Reducing the Impact of Gestational DiabetesIN NEW DEVELOPMENTS IN MEDICINE
Every expectant mother hopes her child’s birth will be free and easy of any complications for herself or her child. The reality is, however, that about 135,000 pregnant American women are diagnosed with gestational diabetes every year, according to the American Diabetes Association. New treatment guidelines from the National Institutes of Health suggest that certain steps can be taken to reduce the impact of this condition for both mother and baby.
While there is little doubt in the medical community that treating moderate to severe gestational diabetes has a positive impact on the health and wellness of mothers and babies, recent research from an NIH network study found that treating mothers who exhibit with the symptoms of mild gestational diabetes can also benefit from being treated for the condition.
Evaluating the Research
The study included 958 women who were diagnosed with mild gestational diabetes. Approximately half of these women were treated for the condition, and the other half were not treated for the condition. Both groups also received traditional pregnancy care in addition to any additional treatment for the gestational diabetes.
Findings resulted from the study included that women with mild gestational diabetes who were treated are:
- Half as likely to have an oversized infant.
- Three-fifths as likely to develop conditions such as preeclampsia.
- Three-fifths as likely to develop high blood pressure.
Because researchers would have to follow these children for several years to determine if there are any long-term benefits for their mother’s treatment, further studies are needed.
| Are You at Risk?
According to the American Diabetes Association, the reasons that some women develop gestational diabetes are unclear. What is known, however, is that certain risk factors can include:
Gestational diabetes can be diagnosed through a simple blood glucose test.
Sources: www.nih.gov, www.diabetes.niddk.nih.gov, www.ada.org© 2013. True North Custom Media. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on new developments in medicine, visit the Claxton-Hepburn Medical Center website.