Gestational diabetes

Gestational diabetes is a type of diabetes that can develop in some women during the second half of pregnancy. Doctors usually check for the condition in pregnant women by doing a blood test, because women often are not aware that they have gestational diabetes.

With treatment, most women who have gestational diabetes will have healthy babies. Gestational diabetes is treated by making certain eating changes, exercising, checking blood sugar levels, and possibly taking insulin shots to keep blood sugar levels within a target range.

Gestational diabetes usually goes away after the baby is born. But women who have gestational diabetes are more likely to develop diabetes later in life.

If the woman's blood sugar level is not controlled, gestational diabetes can cause problems, such as a baby that grows too large or a baby who is born with low blood sugar.

Last Updated: November 4, 2009

Author: Judy Dundas

Medical Review: Anne C. Poinier, MD - Internal Medicine & Alan C. Dalkin, MD - Endocrinology

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