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Diabetes Technol Ther. 2001 Winter;3(4):635-40.

New therapies for the pregnant patient with diabetes.

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Department of Gynecology and Obstetrics, Stanford University, California, USA.


Gestational diabetes complicates 3-5% of pregnancies. Of diabetes seen during pregnancy, 10% is pregestational and the remaining 90% represents gestational diabetes. (1,2) Pregnancy in women with pregestational diabetes is especially high risk. Spontaneous abortion, preterm labor, congenital malformations, preeclampsia, macrosomia, birth injury, and cesarean section are all increased in these pregnancies. Deterioration of maternal health during pregnancy, especially in the setting of diabetes-induced end-organ disease, is a real concern. Vigilant surveillance and management of associated disorders such as retinopathy, nephropathy, and chronic hypertension are required. During the preinsulin era, maternal and perinatal mortality in pregnancies complicated by pregestational diabetes was approximately 50%. (1,2) Although modern obstetrical management and the appropriate use of insulin have dramatically improved maternal-fetal outcomes, pregnant patient with diabetes remains at increased risk for complications. There is no doubt that optimizing maternal glucose control is a key element in avoiding established perinatal risks. The most effective means to accomplish this control are topics of active research. Further, hormonal changes during pregnancy can make glycemic control difficult even for the most compliant and educated patient. This paper discusses several new approaches, either currently in practice or under consideration, to pregnancies complicated by diabetes, including oral hypoglycemic agents, lispro, the insulin pump, and transplantation.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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