According to researchers, women who have had a complicated pregnancy could benefit from screening to prevent diabetes and heart disease later on. Researchers in Glasgow, Scotland, suggest that recent evidence justifies monitoring women who have had difficult pregnancies - for they are at risk of health problems later on in life. For example, those who develop diabetes during pregnancy are at increased risk of mid-life diabetes. Similarly, those who have a premature or low weight baby may also be at increased risk, as are those who develop pre-eclampsia.
The researchers suggest it would be worthwhile screening such women for risk factors, like high cholesterol and high blood pressure. The pregnancy information could be logged in the family doctor's database and used to guide mid-life screening - from the late 30s onwards. It seems that there may be underlying genetic factors influencing both difficult pregnancies and diabetes and heart disease.