Pregnant women with diabetes Diabetes of either type is obviously a cause of concern for the individual suffering from it. But for pregnant women with diabetes, it might mean an increased risk of birth defects in their babies, says a new study by Newcastle University and Regional Maternity Survey Office.

Statistics brought forth by this news convey that children born to women suffering from diabetes at the time of pregnancy, are approximately four times more prone to having a congenital anomaly, as compared to those whose mothers did not exhibit this condition. The relation is being traced to the glucose levels of the expectant female.

“The good news is that, with expert help before and during pregnancy, most women with diabetes will have a healthy baby. The risk of problems can be reduced by taking extra care to have optimum glucose control before becoming pregnant. Any reduction in high glucose levels is likely to improve the chances of a healthy baby. All young women with diabetes need to know about preparing for pregnancy, and should contact their doctor or diabetes team as soon as possible if they are thinking about pregnancy or become pregnant,” commented Dr. Ruth Bell, the lead researcher of this study.

This study investigated the records of 401,149 pregnancies in the north of England from the period spanning 1996 to 2008. Of these, 1,677 cases covered women suffering from diabetes. It was also seen that if the blood glucose levels of these subjects were controlled within the recommended ranges, the chances of congenital defects in the offspring were significantly reduced.

The findings of this study have been published in the journal, Diabetologia.