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Task Force: Screen for Gestational Diabetes After 24 Weeks of Pregnancy
Date:5/27/2013

complications caused by large infants becoming stuck in the birth canal (shoulder dystocia).

Although there is not enough research to support gestational diabetes screening before 24 weeks of pregnancy, the task force said future research may shed more light on how to better manage diabetes in early pregnancy.

"It's always better to prevent a disease than to be diagnosed with one," Nicholson said. "Women should have a conversation with their doctor before getting pregnant or in the early stages of pregnancy about steps they can take -- such as improving their diet, being physically active or other strategies -- to reduce their risk of developing gestational diabetes."

Of the 4 million women who give birth each year, 7 percent have gestational diabetes. The experts said the number of women developing the condition is on the rise as obesity, older maternal age and other risk factors become increasingly common.

Before developing its final recommendation, the task force posted its draft recommendation on its website for public comment. Comments can be submitted from May 28 to June 24.

More information

The American Diabetes Association provides more information on gestational diabetes.

-- Mary Elizabeth Dallas

SOURCE: U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, news release, May 27, 2013


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