What is gestational diabetes?
Diabetes that develops during pregnancy is called gestational diabetes. It usually develops in the middle or latter half of pregnancy and becomes normal after delivery.
How is it diagnosed?
All pregnant women will undergo a Glucose tolerance test (GTT) at 24 wks of pregnancy. It involves taking blood sugar values after taking glucose drink. If the values are abnormal, they are diagnosed to have gestational diabetes.
What are the risk factors?
Obesity, family history of diabetes, diabetes in a previous pregnancy are some of the risk factors. But anybody can develop gestational diabetes. Hence the test is done for all pregnant women.
How can it affect pregnancy?
Baby can grow big. This increases the chance of cesarean section. Baby can have problems after birth. The chance of the baby developing obesity and diabetes in later life is high. These problems are reduced if blood sugar control is good.
How is it treated?
It can be treated with diet and exercise. Some women need insulin or tablets.
Do they need to follow up after delivery?
They are advised to undergo GTT 6wks after delivery for long term follow up.
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