Type 2 diabetes is a medical condition in which the body finds it difficult to regulate the blood sugar levels due to reduced sensitivity of the insulin receptor molecules. As such, the blood sugar levels rises. Medications and dietary management is required to keep the blood sugar levels from fluctuating.
Pregnancy is associated with physiological and hormonal changes within the body. The body is under stress to meet the additional requirements of a growing fetus. There are several complications that arises as a result of pregnancy in women suffering from type 2 diabetes.
Type 2 Diabetes In Pregnancy
High Blood Pressure
The chances of the mother developing high blood pressure is increased in women with type 2 diabetes. The blood pressure and diabetes is a risky combination and requires frequent monitoring. Those with high blood pressure are likely to develop swelling of the ankles, fatigue, headache, palpitations etc.
When the blood pressure goes beyond a level, there are chances of developing convulsions called pre eclampsia. This is a major complication that could endanger the life of both the mother and baby, if not properly attended to. There is also the possibility of going into early labour and caesarian section is very often required.
Urinary Tract Infections
Type 1 diabetes predisposes a pregnant women into developing frequent urinary tract infections. Urinary tract infections are otherwise common in pregnant women, if proper precautions are not taken. These infections require special monitoring as there are chances that the infections could ascend up from the bladder onto the kidneys and result in severe infections with related complications. Also infections make the diabetes even more difficult to manage as insulin levels rise during infections.
Chances Of Caesarian Section
There are chances that pregnant women with type 2 diabetes often require caesarian section. If she has developed blood pressure too then the chances of a normal vaginal delivery becomes even more remote.
There may be occasions where early interference becomes necessary when the life of the mother or the baby is at risk. As a result type 2 diabetes requires careful management especially during pregnancy.
In a women with type 2 diabetes, the baby gets too much nourishment. As a result the baby grows at a rapid rate, resulting in a large baby. It is also called macrosomia.
The baby usually gathers the fat around its shoulders and its trunk. When the baby is large, normal vaginal delivery becomes difficult. Also there are chances that the fat shoulders of the baby could get damaged while passing through the vagina.
Low Blood Sugar In The Baby
It often happens in babies born to mothers with diabetes. There is a risk that the blood sugar levels of the baby drops below normal levels soon after birth. As a result the baby must be monitored and its nutrient supplies must be provided. It is necessary to give the baby frequent feeds after birth.
Neonatal jaundice is the yellowish discoloration of the skin and mucous membrane soon after birth. It is not related to any infection and commonly occurs in babies due to blood group incompatibility. In babies born to mothers with type 2 diabetes, the chances of developing neonatal jaundice is increased.