World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


Babies Get Better Chance To Escape Dangerous Health Cycle


Babies Get A Better Chance To Escape A Dangerous Health Cycle

Friday 7 December 2012

– note study is attached: Click here to read [pdf]

A promising step forward in stopping an intergenerational cycle of birth complications, diabetes and obesity associated with gestational diabetes has been made by researchers at the University of Sydney.

“To our knowledge, this is the first study to show that mums with carefully controlled gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) can give birth to babies with normal levels of body fat,” said Dr Cheryl Au, who recently completed her Bachelor of Medicine/Surgery at Sydney Medical School and is lead author of the study being published in Diabetes Care on Friday, 7 December.

“This is very important for those babies’ immediate and future health. An overweight baby with a high percentage of body fat is at higher risk of complications during labour such as fractures due to a difficult delivery and caesarian sections. After birth they are at increased risk of obesity and diabetes. If the baby is a girl she is more likely to develop GDM if she gets pregnant.

“So we are talking about preventing a continuous cycle of health risks for a condition that is developed by an estimated 17,000 Australian women a year.”

During a normal pregnancy the hormone insulin becomes less effective in transferring glucose from the bloodstream to the mother’s tissues to make sure the baby gets sufficient nutrients from her blood.

GDM occurs if the mother no longer secretes enough insulin into her tissues, resulting in high blood glucose concentration in her blood stream. One result is an excess transfer of nutrients to the baby causing increased weight and body fat.

The study was performed at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital and looked at 532 babies born to mothers without GDM and 67 babies born to mothers with GDM. The majority of GDM mothers were treated at the hospital’s dedicated GDM clinic where treatment consisted of diet, exercise, self-monitoring of glucose four times a day and insulin if needed, resulting in good control of blood glucose levels for the majority

“We used the gold standard method of air displacement plethysmography which uses pressure and volume changes to get an accurate reading of the percentage of body fat. Most other studies use measures such as skin fold thickness or an X-ray technique which are less accurate,” said Dr Au.

“We were surprised and delighted to find there were no differences in body fat percentage between the GDM and non-GDM babies. This is in contrast to previous studies which showed that, even if birth weight can be normalised with good glucose control, body fat is still increased in these infants, with all the accompanying health risks.”

The researchers will continue to follow the babies’ progress to assess their long-term outcomes.

Dr Au’s honours supervisors and contributing authors to the study were Professor Heather Jeffery and Dr Camille Raynes-Greenow both from the University’s School of Public Health. The other contributing authors from the School of Public Health are Dr Robin Turner and Ms Angela Carberry.


ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Peace Deal ‘first Step’ In Resolving South Sudan Crisis

Children at a protection of civilians site in Juba, South Sudan, run by the UN Mission, perform at a special cultural event in March 2015. UN Photo/JC McIlwaine More>>

Yemen: Killing Or Maiming An Average Of Eight Children A Day

Killing or maiming an average of eight children a day, ‘brutal’ Yemen conflict must end – UNICEF More>>

Changing Habits/behaviours Key To Overcome Vaccine Hesitancy

Vaccine hesitancy can be caused by factors such as negative beliefs based on myths, misinformation. Fear of needles can be a factor for refusal. Photo: PAHO/WHO More>>

Burundi: Ban Condemns Assassination Of Senior Army Officer

Refugees from Burundi in South Kivu, Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). Photo: OCHA/Naomi Frerotte United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has condemned the assassination Burundi’s former Army Chief of Staff, Colonel Jean Bikomagu, who ... More>>

Deadly Industrial Explosions In Northern China

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has been deeply saddened to learn of the loss of life and the injuries to scores of people as a result of deadly explosions in Tianjin, China. More>>

UN Urges Action To Tackle Deepening Refugee Crisis In Greece

A group of Syrian refugees arrive on the island of Lesbos after travelling in an inflatable raft from Turkey, near Skala Sykaminias, Greece. Photo: UNHCR/A. McConnell More>>

Probe Into Those Responsible For Chemical Weapons In Syria

The US Vessel Cape Ray, on which all 581 metric tonnes of a precursor chemical for sarin gas were removed from Syria and safely destroyed as the ship sailed in international waters in 2014. Photo: US Dept. of Transportation More>>

Myanmar Election: UNICEF Urges Prioritisation Of Children

With 99 days to go before Myanmar elections, UNICEF urges candidates make children the clear winner More>>

Liberia Thousands Of Unregistered Children Born During Ebola Crisis

Thousands of unregistered children born in Liberia during Ebola crisis at risk of exploitation – UNICEF More>>

UN Refugee Agency Envoy Angelina Jolie Visits Myanmar

UNHCR Special Envoy Angelina Jolie Pitt (left) in Myitkyina township, Kachin State, Myanmar, meeting with some of the 100,000 displaced people who currently live there. Photo: UNHCR/T.Stoddart More>>

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
World
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news