What are the Risk Factors for Gestational Diabetes?

By  ,  Onlymyhealth editorial team
Aug 23, 2011

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Risk Factors for Gestational DiabetesAny woman can develop gestational diabetes during pregnancy but certain factors increase your risk of developing gestational diabetes. Read to know more on the risk factors for gestational diabetes.

  • Age: Women who are 25 or older are at higher risk of gestational diabetes during pregnancy.
  • Past history: If you have had gestational diabetes in any previous pregnancy the risk of gestational diabetes in the current pregnancy is increased. Women who have given birth to a baby who weighed more than 9 lb (4 kg) are also more likely to develop gestational diabetes.
  • Family history: Family history of diabetes (parent or sibling with type 2 diabetes) increases the risk of gestational diabetes.
  • Lifestyle and weight: Women who are not physically active before pregnancy and who are obese (mass index [BMI] of 30 or higher) are at increased risk of gestational diabetes.
  • Race: Women from certain race or ethnic group such as Latin Americans, Native Americans, Asian Americans, African Americans, or Pacific Islanders are at high risk of gestational diabetes.
  • Medical history: Women with polycystic ovary syndrome, dark skin rash called acanthosis nigricans on the back of the neck or in folds on the body, on certain medications (such as corticosteroids), history of pre-diabetes, history of problems during previous pregnancy  are at increased risk of gestational diabetes.

These risk factors just increase your likelihood of developing gestational diabetes but they definitely do not mean that you will develop gestational diabetes. Consult your doctor for advice on the measures that can help to prevent gestational diabetes.


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