Gestational Diabetes Essay

977 Words Sep 11th, 2012 4 Pages
Gestational Diabetes
Alivia Danna
October 5, 2011
HED 3390

Gestational Diabetes Gestational diabetes is a disease that affects pregnant women it’s a glucose intolerance that is started or diagnosed during pregnancy. Based on recently announced diagnostic criteria for gestational diabetes, according to the American Diabetes Association, it is estimated that gestational diabetes affects 18% of pregnancies. Pregnancy hormones can block insulin therefore causing the glucose levels to increase in a pregnant woman’s blood. Gestational diabetes starts when your body is not able to make and use all the insulin it needs for pregnancy (American Diabetes Association). Without enough insulin, glucose cannot leave the blood and be changed to
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Not all women experience symptoms of gestational diabetes, or the symptoms are mild and not life threatening to the pregnant woman. Most of the time the blood sugar level returns to normal after delivery, which was the case for my mom. The one that’s affected the most is the baby and it’s usually later on in the pregnancy after the baby is already formed, but while the baby is busy growing. Untreated or poorly controlled gestational diabetes can hurt your baby. Although insulin does not cross the placenta, glucose and other nutrients do, so extra blood glucose goes through the placenta, giving the baby high blood glucose levels. This causes the baby's pancreas to make extra insulin to get rid of the blood glucose. Since the baby is getting more energy than it needs to grow and develop, the extra energy is stored as fat. This can lead to macrosomia, or a "fat" baby, babies with macrosomia face health problems of their own, including damage to their shoulders during birth, newborns may have very low blood glucose levels at birth and are also at higher risk for breathing problems. Babies with excess insulin become children who are at risk for obesity and adults who are at risk for type 2 diabetes (American Diabetes Association). Women with Gestational diabetes tend to have larger babies therefore there may be birth injuries or the need to have a C-section.
The treatment of gestational diabetes is simple you must monitor
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