Gestational Diabetes Got You Freaked Out? Here’s What You Need to Know
(2021) reported the global prevalence of Gestational Diabetes Mellitus (GDM) was 14.7% based on the International Association of Diabetes and Pregnancy Study Groups (IADPSG) criteria, the most used screening method worldwide. Meaning that one in five pregnant women may be affected. a woman with high blood sugar during pregnancy. Both the mother and the fetus are seriously affected by gestational diabetes. Diabetes has over 100 complications that can include blindness, foot impairment, renal failure, and other devastating effects. It’s like opening a Pandora’s box.
Thankfully, prediabetes is curable. If you form a habit, you can prevent diabetes from occurring!
Effects on pregnant women
- Miscarriage: 15–30% of pregnancies end in miscarriage, and high blood sugar can lead to aberrant embryo growth or even embryo death;
- Pregnancy-related hypertension: 2-4 times more common than in pregnant women without diabetes;
- Recurrent gestational diabetes: There is a 33-69% chance of recurrence in a subsequent pregnancy, a 17–63% rise in the likelihood of long-term diabetes, and a significant incidence of long-term cardiovascular and cerebrovascular disorders;
- Infection: Women who are pregnant and have uncontrolled blood sugar are at risk for infection;
- Polyhydramnios: Increased fetal urine excretion brought on by fetal hyperglycemia and hyperosmotic diuresis could be the cause of polyhydramnios;
- Others: There is a marked increase in the likelihood of dystocia, birth canal damage, and surgical delivery, all of which raise the risk of extended labor and postpartum hemorrhage.
Effects on the fetus
- Fetal macrosomia: When a mother has hyperglycemia, the fetus is exposed to an environment that is hyperinsulinemic for a long time, which causes excessive body development by promoting the synthesis of fat and protein and inhibiting the breakdown of fat. If gestational diabetes is diagnosed, careful food control will result in growth limitation in the fetus.
- Fetal malformations: In addition to having an impact on the expectant mother, hyperglycemia during pregnancy has a number of negative effects for the developing fetus. Fetal abnormalities may arise in extreme circumstances. Seven to ten times as many malformations occur as in a typical pregnancy. Early in pregnancy, hyperglycemia can cause abnormal embryonic development, which can result in miscarriage or embryonic death.
- Premature birth: Premature birth can result from polyhydramnios, which can happen in the second trimester of pregnancy.
Effects on newborns
- Neonatal respiratory distress syndrome: Excessive blood sugar inhibits glucocorticoids, increases the production and release of surfactant in alveolar type II cells, and stimulates the secretion of fetal insulin to produce hyperinsulinemia. It causes the lungs of the fetus to produce more surfactant. Fetal lung maturation is delayed and secretion is decreased.
- Neonatal hypoglycemia
- Neonatal polycythemia
- Neonatal hyperbilirubinemia
- Others: low calcium and low magnesium
Diagnostic criteria for gestational diabetes
Although the risk of Gestational Diabetes Mellitus
(GDM) is higher in certain groups of women, it can happen to any woman in their pregnancy. In Singapore, all pregnant women will be offered screening for GDM with an oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT) between 24 and 28 weeks of pregnancy.
Between weeks 24 and 28 of pregnancy, pregnant women who have not been diagnosed with diabetes should have a 75-gram glucose powder tolerance test performed. Fasting and blood glucose cutoffs of one and two hours following sugar consumption.