Dealing with diabetes throughout pregnancy

By Dr. Ian Shyaka

Before discovery of some drugs for diabetes, women with diabetes mellitus were at very high risk of complications during pregnancy. Today, most women with diabetes can have a safe pregnancy and delivery, similar to that of non-diabetic women. This improvement is largely due to good blood glucose (sugar) control, which requires adherence to diet, frequent daily blood glucose monitoring, and timely diabetes medicine adjustment.

Glucose in the mother’s blood crosses the placenta to provide energy for the baby; thus, high blood glucose levels in the mother lead to high blood glucose levels in the developing baby as well.

Women with poorly controlled high blood sugar levels are more likely to have problems during pregnancy and child birth, but the risk of developing these problems is greatly minimized to as much as non-diabetic pregnant mothers with proper diabetes control.

A diabetic pregnant mother may need monitoring and follow up by different doctors, depending on the availability of these doctors and their expertise in diabetes control. One doctor might take care of your pregnancy although this doctor might also be able to take care of your diabetes. If not, one will see a diabetes doctor during pregnancy.

Dr. Ian Shyaka is a General medical Practitioner

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