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Friday, 8 April 2016

Maternal obesity and diabetes may lead to overgrowth of baby

A new research of University of Cambridge brings out that the babies of obese women and those who develop gestational diabetes are five times likely to be excessively large by six months of pregnancy. The research is published recently in the journal Diabetes Care. Gestational diabetes is known to affect women during pregnancy and those associated with obesity are at higher risk. The condition causes the unborn child to be larger, putting the mother at risk during childbirth and likely the offspring may be obese or carry diabetes later life. Solution? These conditions can be controlled by a combination of balanced diet, thorough exercise and meditation.

Researchers at Department of Obstetrics & Gynaecology under University of Cambridge analyzed the data of pregnant women from Pregnancy Outcome Prediction Study, following ultrasound scans of first time mothers to assess the growth of babies inside womb. The compared the measurements of abdominal and head circumference of the foetuses between women who developed gestational diabetes and those who did not.

In a study considering 4069 women, 4.2% were diagnosed with gestational diabetes at or beyond 28weeks. The foetuses of these women grew excessively prior to diagnosis and that happened between 20 and 28 weeks. Hence the babies are already large at the time of diagnosis. Similarly researchers tried to study women with obese, as it is a well known factor for child obesity. Even in the absence of diabetes, the foetus of obese women was twice big than it should be in 28weeks.

The author suggests that the evidence proves an urgent requirement to assess the effect of earlier screening, for the outcome of pregnancy and also benefit of health of offspring. The research was supported by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Cambridge Comprehensive Biomedical Research Centre and SANDS (the stillbirth and neonatal death charity).

Further Study: University of Cambridge

Journal Source: Sovio, U et al. Accelerated fetal growth prior to diagnosis of gestational diabetes mellitus: a prospective cohort study of nulliparous women. Diabetes Care; 8 April 2016; DOI 10.2337/dc16-0160


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