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Pregnancy-Related Problems-Check Your Symptoms. Preeclampsia. Risk: High Blood Pressure in Pregnancy. Women With High Blood Pressure When Pregnant More Likely to Develop Heart Disease Later Feb. 5, 2007 -- Women who develop even mild high blood pressure during pregnancy may be more likely to have heart disease later in life, according to a new study.

Risk: High Blood Pressure in Pregnancy

Doctors usually assume that developing high blood pressure during pregnancy has no long-term consequences and will merely go away once the baby is born. The new study suggests this may not be true. As a result, women who have high blood pressure while pregnant may require early intervention to protect their hearts. "Our research and that of others may have important implications for the management of women who have high blood pressure in pregnancy," concludes study researcher Michiel L. The study appears in the February issue of Hypertension: Journal of the American Heart Association. Heart Disease Later In the study of 491 postmenopausal women, almost 31% said they had high blood pressure when they were pregnant. Predictive Value. Gestational diabetes. What is gestational diabetes?

Gestational diabetes

This is a type of diabetes that some women get during pregnancy. Between 2 and 10 percent of expectant mothers develop this condition, making it one of the most common health problems of pregnancy. Diabetes is complicated, but in a nutshell it means you have abnormally high levels of sugar in your blood. Here's what happens: When you eat, your digestive system breaks most of your food down into a type of sugar called glucose.

When you're pregnant, hormonal changes can make your cells less responsive to insulin. Most women with gestational diabetes don't remain diabetic after the baby is born. Contractions begin and the cervix gradually opens. How will I know if I have gestational diabetes? Gestational diabetes usually has no symptoms. By the way, if you get a positive result on a glucose-screening test, it doesn't necessarily mean that you have gestational diabetes. How can I tell whether I'm at high risk for gestational diabetes? Diabetes in Pregnancy. Gestational diabetes refers to diabetes that is diagnosed during pregnancy.

Diabetes in Pregnancy

Gestational diabetes occurs in about 7 percent of all pregnancies, usually in the second half of the pregnancy. It almost always goes away as soon as your baby is born. However, if gestational diabetes is not treated during your pregnancy, you may experience some complications. Causes Pregnancy hormones cause the body to be resistant to the action of insulin, a hormone made by your pancreas that helps your body use the fuels supplied by food.

The carbohydrates you eat provide your body with a fuel called glucose, the sugar in the blood that nourishes your brain, heart, tissues and muscles. Diagnosis. Preeclampsia. Preeclampsia — also known as pregnancy-induced hypertension (PIH) or toxemia — is a disorder that generally develops late in pregnancy (after week 20) and is characterized by a sudden onset of high blood pressure, edema (swelling, generally in the feet, ankles and hands) and signs that some organs may not be working normally (including protein in the urine).

Preeclampsia

When the condition is diagnosed before 32 weeks of pregnancy, it’s known as early-onset preeclampsia. An estimated 5 to 10 percent of pregnant women are diagnosed with preeclampsia — though half of those cases are among those who had high blood pressure prior to pregnancy. While most cases resolve without issues, if left untreated it can be dangerous for both mom and baby. Unmanaged preeclampsia can prevent a developing fetus from getting enough blood and oxygen, damage a mother's liver and kidneys, and, in rare cases, progress to eclampsia, a much more serious condition involving seizures. The causes behind preeclampsia Risk factors. Health Risks. Part 1 of 9: Risk Factors Risk Factors Every pregnancy carries its risks.

Health Risks

But good prenatal care and support can help minimize those risks. Factors like age and overall health status can increase a woman’s chances of experiencing complications during pregnancy. Part 2 of 9: Reproductive Abnormalities Reproductive Abnormalities Structural problems in a woman's uterus or cervix heighten the risk of difficulties like miscarriage, an abnormally positioned fetus, and difficult labor. The Dangers of Gaining Too Much Weight During Pregnancy. Blend Images/Getty As long as the numbers on the scale don't get out of control, it's okay to give in to an occasional craving.

The Dangers of Gaining Too Much Weight During Pregnancy

Still, some women manage to go overboard by eating for two (linebackers!) And becoming less active than they were pre-conception -- and that could be dangerous for both Mom and baby. "You don't need to gain a ton of weight to have a healthy baby," says Anita Sadaty, M.D., an ob-gyn based in Great Neck, New York. In fact, an average-sized woman should pack on only 25 to 35 pounds over the course of nine months -- any more than that and you're asking for trouble. Being pregnant will just feel harder. You'll be more likely to develop diabetes. You're more likely to have complications during your delivery. The more you gain, the longer it takes to lose it. You put your baby at a disadvantage too. Copyright © 2014 Meredith Corporation.