Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Diabetes in Pregnancy is on the rise - US News and World Report

Gestational Diabetes in the news: Here's a snippet of a great article in US News and World Report about how the growing diabetes epidemic is affecting pregnant mothers.

It's important to remember that Gestational Diabetes and diabetes during pregnancy (type 2 diabetes, or prepregnancy diabetes) are different.

Nonetheless, there are risks for mothers and children, so don't delay your testing and be sure to follow up on your treatment plan and diet!
Diabetes in Pregnancy Is on the Rise - US News and World Report: "Diabetes in Pregnancy Is on the Rise
By Lindsay Lyon
Posted April 28, 2008

"Having poorly controlled diabetes while pregnant can cause all sorts of harm, from stillbirths and miscarriages to birth defects. So experts are concerned that the number of women who already have diabetes by the time they conceive is rising rapidly: Between 1999 and 2005, the group doubled in size, growing significantly across all age, racial, and ethnic groups examined by Kaiser Permanent Southern California researchers, who report their findings in May's Diabetes Care. Different from gestational diabetes, a temporary type that some women develop well into pregnancy, prepregnancy diabetes can pose more of a threat to a developing fetus.

'A baby's organs form during the first five to eight weeks of pregnancy,' says Steven Gabbe, dean of the Vanderbilt University School of Medicine and an obstetrician who specializes in diabetes and pregnancy. 'If a mother's diabetes is poorly controlled, she can have up to a 25 percent risk of delivering a baby with a major malformation of the heart, brain, or skeleton."...

...Since gestational diabetes usually develops late in pregnancy, it doesn't cause the birth defects that pre-existing diabetes can. However, "there are risks associated with having gestational diabetes as well," cautions study author Jean Lawrence, a research scientist at Kaiser Permanente. Marked by a buildup of glucose in the bloodstream, it can fatten babies, making them difficult to deliver and possibly necessitating a cesarean, and it can also set them up for future health problems. Even though gestational diabetes tends to disappear following delivery, women who have it are much more likely to do so again in later pregnancies; they're also more likely to develop type 2 diabetes down the road."

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