Complications of Gestational Diabetes

Updated at: Feb 23, 2012
Complications of Gestational Diabetes

Complications related to gestational diabetes can affect both mother and child. If properly detected, it can be treated permanently.

Aparna Mir
PregnancyWritten by: Aparna MirPublished at: Feb 22, 2012

Complications of gestational diabetesDiabetes developed during pregnancy is termed gestational diabetes. Though it disappears after child’s birth, it can create complications for both mother and her baby if undetected and left untreated. Occurrence of gestational diabetes in pregnant woman can make the delivery complicated.

There are various complications that can arise due to gestational diabetes.

Complications in the baby

  •  Low blood sugar level- The baby can suffer from low blood sugar level (hypoglycaemia) due to this. This condition arises because of the high production of insulin by the mother’s body to maintain the high glucose level in the body. Sometimes this can also lead to death of the child shortly after the birth.
  • Overweight babies - The production of insulin increases twice in pregnant woman. This results in increased size of the baby.  The condition of oversized babies is called macrosomia. These babies cause complications during delivery.
  • Jaundice - As the baby is delivered prematurely, the baby’s internal mechanisms remain underdeveloped. The baby’s liver fails to work properly to clear the bilirubin produced in the blood.
  • Prone to obesity and type II diabetes- Children born to mothers having gestational diabetes are very prone to develop obesity and type II diabetes in future. If not checked, they can even die at a very young age due to diabetes.


Complications in the woman

  • Onset of type II diabetes- If a woman has developed gestational diabetes during one pregnancy, chances are there she can again have it in future pregnancies. The woman becomes very sensitive towards developing type II diabetes. For such woman, it is advisable to check their glucose level on a regular basis and try to maintain it with a proper diet.
  • Sudden increase in blood pressure- Gestational diabetes can cause a sudden rise in the blood pressure (Preeclampsia)  during delivery. Both mother and her child are at a high risk during such condition.

Apart from these, a woman can develop serious depression and feel emotionally weak during gestational diabetes.

Complications related to gestational diabetes can be prevented by regular check-ups. A woman suffering from gestational diabetes can lead a normal life if treated and cared properly. They can also give birth to normal babies if the disease is identified before time and cured.


Read more articles on Gestational Diabetes.



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