Duggar Drama: Jill Dillard Ignores Medical Advice, Is Her Unborn Child At Risk?

The Duggar family is at the center of yet another controversy. Married Duggar daughter Jill Dillard recently announced that she was expecting her second child. The Dillards had recently returned from El Salvador and Duggar fans seemed relieved when Jill announced her pregnancy with many believing this would mean their favorite Duggar would remain in the United States away from the Zika-virus scare until the baby’s birth. However, it seems the celebration was premature as Jill Dillard recently announced that she would be returning to Central America despite being pregnant and would return shortly before the baby’s birth.

The Duggar Family Blog reveals that Jill Dillard has made plans to travel back to Central America with her husband Derick Dillard and son Israel despite concerns about the safety of pregnancy in the region. Jill Dillard recently announced that she was pregnant and is due in July. For many Duggar fans, this seemed to solidify that the Dillards were back in the United States until at least July. However, it seems that Jill is not planning to follow the advice of the El Salvador medical community and will be returning to the Zika-prone area.


Though the Duggar daughter did not provide a firm date that the family would return to Central America, she noted it would be “soon.”

“We are planning to go back very soon. Then we will come back for the birth of the baby.”

The comments seem to imply that Jill, Derick, and Israel will return to Central America within the coming weeks and return once Jill is further along in her pregnancy. It is unclear how long Jill will remain in Central America, but if she stays beyond 34 weeks, it will make flying a much riskier endeavor.


USA Today notes that the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology (ACOG) suggests that the best time to travel is between the 14th and 28th weeks of pregnancy with travel beyond 34 weeks considered risky.

“Traveling at week 34 and beyond is especially risky because it is very close to the mother’s due date–only six weeks away. Complications like preterm labor are likely to occur at this time. In addition, labor and delivery can occur while on the road, over the water or in the air. Without the proper professionals and facilities nearby, the infant and mother can suffer serious complications.”

With Jill suffering birth complications that resulted in a cesarean section with her first child, it would be unlikely that the mother-to-be would take such a risky move. However, if she did, it wouldn’t be the first medical advice this pregnancy that she ignored.

The CDC notes that travel to Zika-infested should be avoided by pregnant women and El Salvador recommended that women in the region try to avoid pregnancy until at least 2018. The CDC also notes that they do not know if there is a safe time to travel during pregnancy. In other words, they cannot ensure that it is safe for a pregnant woman to travel to a Zika-prone area at any point in her pregnancy without risk. Therefore, it seems that Jill has decided to take the risk and enter the territory despite the risks.


The medical community has made the assessment based on increased risk of microcephaly and other birth defects in babies born to Zika-infected mothers. Many Duggar fans are concerned about Jill’s choices wondering why the family would choose to go back to the country during pregnancy instead of waiting a few extra months.

What do you think about Jill Dillard deciding to return to Central America despite medical warnings about the trip? What about the idea of Jill traveling late in her pregnancy despite having complications during her first birth?

[Featured Image by Dillard Family/Facebook]