Pregnancy and Diabetes

Monday, March 07, 2011

The key to a healthy pregnancy for a woman with diabetes is keeping blood glucose in the target range both before and during her pregnancy. Dr. Edward Hill discusses more about pregnancy and diabetes in todays 60 Second Housecall.

Dr. Hill:

Women who have never had diabetes before but who develop high blood glucose levels during pregnancy are said to have gestational diabetes. This requires evaluation and treatment during pregnancy. It usually goes away after pregnancy but may return in subsequent pregnancies and may precede development of type 2 diabetes years later.

Risks associated with pregnancies for women with diabetes include:

Heavier than average weight at birth

Low blood glucose in the newborn

Birth defects

Higher risk of Cesarean delivery or operative vaginal delivery and

Higher risk of delivering a stillborn infant

It is important to control diabetes before planning a pregnancy, so prenatal care for women with diabetes should begin before becoming pregnant. Optimum blood glucose management reduces risk to the mother and to the fetus.

Managing other chronic conditions that often accompany diabetes, such as heart disease, high blood pressure and peripheral vascular disease, is also important to maximize chances of delivering a healthy infant.

For North Mississippi Medical Center, Im Dr. Edward Hill.