Gestational diabetes for pregnant woman and there Risk Factors


Gestational diabetes is a condition in which a woman without diabetes develops high blood sugar levels during pregnancy. Gestational diabetes generally results in few symptoms; however, it does increase the risk of pre-eclampsia, depression, and requiring a Caesarean section. Babies born to mothers with poorly treated gestational diabetes are at increased risk of being too large, having low blood sugar after birth, and jaundice. If untreated, it can also result in a stillbirth. Long term, children are at higher risk of being overweight and developing type 2 diabetes.

Gestational diabetes is caused by not enough insulin in the setting of insulin resistance. Risk factors include being overweight, previously having gestational diabetes, a family history of type 2 diabetes, and having polycystic ovarian syndrome. Diagnosis is by blood tests. For those at normal risk, screening is recommended between 24 and 28 weeks' gestation. For those at high risk, testing may occur at the first prenatal visit.Journal of Clinical Diabetes is a peer-reviewed journal that aims to publish research dealing with Diabetes research which covers a wide variety of specialties such as: Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes, Diabetic Nephropathy and retinopathy, Gestational Diabetes and covers all aspects of diabetes technology including: insulin and metabolic peptide delivery, glucose monitoring, Prediabetes, Latent autoimmune diabetes in adults etc.

Risk factors

  • Classical risk factors for developing gestational diabetes are:
  • Polycystic ovary syndrome
  • A previous diagnosis of gestational diabetes or prediabetes, impaired glucose tolerance, or impaired fasting glycaemia
  • A family history revealing a first-degree relative with type 2 diabetes
  • Maternal age – a woman's risk factor increases as she gets older (especially for women over 35 years of age).
  • Paternal age – one study found that a father's age over 55 years was associated with GD
  • Ethnicity (those with higher risk factors include African-Americans, Afro-Caribbeans, Native Americans, Hispanics, Pacific Islanders, and people originating from South Asia)
  • Being overweight, obese or severely obese increases the risk by a factor 2.1, 3.6 and 8.6, respectively.
  • A previous pregnancy which resulted in a child with a macrosomia (high birth weight: >90th centile or >4000 g (8 lbs 12.8 oz))

Morgan E,
Editorial Manager,
Journal of Clinical Diabetes.