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Study: Diabetic women more likely to have stillborn baby

By: Team Ifairer | Posted: 30-07-2019
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Study: Diabetic women more likely to have stillborn baby
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Researchers from the University of Glasgow looked at the records of nearly 4,000 Scottish diabetic mothers and found that diabetic women are more than four times more likely to have a stillborn baby than those without the condition. The new study found that high blood sugar levels in pregnant diabetics was a "risk factor" in stillbirths. The Body Mass Index (BMI) of diabetic women is also a critical factor, the study found. Researchers also found that a third of stillbirths in diabetic women happened at full term.The study identified 5,392 babies born to 3,847 mothers with diabetes in Scotland between April 1998 to June 2016.

Dr Sharon Mackin, who carried out the study, said, "It is vital that we, as healthcare professionals, find better ways to support women during their fertile ages to optimise weight and blood sugar, so that when entering pregnancy, whether that be planned or unplanned, they are better prepared and their risk of adverse outcomes is reduced.

"It is important that women with diabetes are mindful of this, and are able to access appropriate pre-conceptual counselling, even if not imminently planning a pregnancy. Women with diabetes should also make contact with their diabetes clinic as soon as they get a positive pregnancy test so that we can see and support them early on," she said.

The study ruled that earlier delivery may be considered "an attractive option" but that more research was needed before recommendations for optimal timing were made. Dr Mackin said the question "has to be asked about whether earlier delivery of all diabetic pregnancies could prevent these term stillbirths".

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