Health experts advice preconception counseling to mitigate the risks of pregnancy for diabetic women.
A study from Kaiser Permanente, made public last week showed that between 1999 and 2005, there were double the number of births from women suffering diabetes. Further, most of the women had done so in the absence of specialized healthcare and information needed to manage the condition during pregnancy.
Jean Lawrence, the lead author of the study and a research scientist at Kaiser Permanente's Department of Research and Evaluation said, "We're seeing children as young as 10 developing Type 2 diabetes. That means it's never too early for young women to know about their health as it relates to future childbearing."
Pregnant women with diabetes carry an enhanced risk of having a miscarriage or stillbirth. Further, the kids born to diabetic mothers could be victims of birth defects or could be born prematurely. Research has also pointed out that babies born to diabetic mothers could grow up to be overweight adults and could develop diabetes themselves.
During their study which spanned seven years, researchers evaluated 175,000 women of varied ethnicity and who had delivered in Kaiser Hospitals in California.
The study indicated a sharp increase in the incidence of diabetes among pregnant women - from 8 per 1,000 in 1999 to 18 per 1,000 in 2005. Teens between the ages of 13 and 19 were also affected. Growing obesity among children is thought to be behind the onset of early diabetes, researchers said.
In the light of all these developments, preconception counseling is now being recognized as crucial to undergo a hassle free pregnancy. The study, published in Diabetes Care Health offers advice to teenage and young women about education and counseling to offset risks of diabetes and its complications in pregnant women and their children.