Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD
Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.
Charles Patrick Davis, MD, PhD
Dr. Charles "Pat" Davis, MD, PhD, is a board certified Emergency Medicine doctor who currently practices as a consultant and staff member for hospitals. He has a PhD in Microbiology (UT at Austin), and the MD (Univ. Texas Medical Branch, Galveston). He is a Clinical Professor (retired) in the Division of Emergency Medicine, UT Health Science Center at San Antonio, and has been the Chief of Emergency Medicine at UT Medical Branch and at UTHSCSA with over 250 publications.
- What is gestational diabetes?
- What causes gestational diabetes?
- What are risk factors for gestational diabetes?
- What are the symptoms of gestational diabetes?
- How is gestational diabetes diagnosed?
- What are the consequences of gestational diabetes for the baby and mother?
- What is the treatment for gestational diabetes?
- Can gestational diabetes be prevented?
- What is the outlook (prognosis) for gestational diabetes?
- Find a local Obstetrician-Gynecologist in your town
What is gestational diabetes?
Gestational diabetes is diabetes, or high blood sugar levels, that develops during pregnancy. It occurs in about 4% of all pregnancies. It is usually diagnosed in the later stages of pregnancy and often occurs in women who have never had diabetes.
What causes gestational diabetes?
Gestational diabetes is thought to arise because the many changes, hormonal and otherwise, that occur in the body during pregnancy lead some women to become resistant to insulin. Insulin is a hormone made by specialized cells in the pancreas that allows the body to effectively use glucose for fuel (energy). When levels of insulin are low, or the body cannot effectively use insulin, blood glucose levels rise.
What are risk factors for gestational diabetes?
Some degree of insulin resistance and impaired glucose tolerance is normal in late pregnancy. However, in some women, this is enough to produce diabetes of pregnancy, or gestational diabetes. There are several risk factors that can increase your risk of getting gestational diabetes. Risk factors include:
- Being overweight or obese
- Having a history of gestational diabetes in a previous pregnancy
- Having had a baby with a high birth weight (over 9 pounds)
- Having a parent or sibling with type 2 diabetes
- Having polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS)
- Being of African American, American Indian, Asian American, Hispanic, or Pacific Islander American ethnicity
- Having pre-diabetes
Viewers share their comments
Parenting and Pregnancy
Get tips for baby and you.