Gravida and para are medical terms derived from Latin. Gravida stands for gravidity and Para – for parity. Both terms sound almost the same as what they are usually referred to in English. Gravida Para is one of the most common concerns medical transcriptionists asks for. Below are some essentials concerning Gravida Para.
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Gravida Para Essentials
1. Numbers matter
Gravida refers to the number of times there has been a formed viable product of conception. To put it simply, gravida is a number of pregnancies a woman has had in her lifetime and it does not matter whether each is completed or not.
Para refers to the number of live births a woman has had delivered. The important remark here is that para indicates how many 20-week births were given as the pregnancy beyond that period would be considered para 0 or nullipara.
2. let’s see how it works in practice.
Let’s assume of a female patient in labor, 30 years old, G2 P1, 40 weeks pregnant. What does G2 P1 mean?
It means that the woman had two confirmed pregnancies and one of them has been carried. In other words, it will read like secundigravida and primipara.
The suffixes such as nulli, primi or multi can be a good hint for they refer to a certain number of pregnancies, delivered or not.
A “nulligravida” is a woman who has never been pregnant. A “primigravida” is a woman who is pregnant for the first time or has been pregnant one time. A “multigravida” or “secundigravida” is a woman who has been pregnant more than once.
As for para, primipara describes a woman who has had one delivery after 20 weeks while multipara describes a woman who has had two or more births. And Nulliparous is the term that is used for a woman who has never given birth after 20 weeks of pregnancy.
There is also a term “elderly primigravida” that refers to a woman in her first pregnancy, who is at least 35 years old. And it seems the term is commonly used nowadays.
Para may be broken down into TPAL, where T is a number of term pregnancies, P is a number of preterm pregnancies, A stands for abortions and L is the number of living children the woman has. Adding Gravida, the elaborate coding system will appear GTPAL where G is obviously gravidity.
5. One is enough
What about pregnancies with a multiple gestation like when a woman carries twins or triplets?
Gravidity considers each pregnancy only once in terms of its counting whether she carries a single baby or twins.
For example, a woman who has lost a child at 9 weeks of pregnancy then has given a birth to triplets at 36 weeks of pregnancy, and a birth of a single baby at 40 weeks of pregnancy - is Gravida 3. Again, only number of confirmed pregnancies does count, not a number of children she has been carrying.
Parity shows the total number of deliveries after 20 weeks, finally leading to live births. So if a woman, for instance, had delivered twin but had a pregnancy loss before, she would be a Para 2 although she has given birth to 3 infants.
The terms are used not only in human medicine but also in biology. When it comes to human beings, it can lead to some ambiguity for events occurring between 20 and 24 weeks, as well as for multiple pregnancies.