Can being obese cause complications for a woman during pregnancy? If so, what complications can occur?

Dr. McKenna discusses the pregnancy complications associated with obesity. Click play to watch the video or read the transcript.

Can being obese cause complications for a woman during pregnancy? If so, what complications can occur?

Definitely. Women who are obese are more likely to develop complications of pregnancy such as gestational diabetes, preeclampsia or hypertensive disease during pregnancy, preterm birth, growth abnormalities of the baby. Most importantly, they're at increased risk to have a baby die before it's time to be born or have a stillbirth.

In addition, obese women are more likely to have a cesarean delivery. Unfortunately, if they're obese and they have a cesarean delivery, they're at an increase risk for surgical complications such as wound infections or even blood clots after surgery.

   

Women who are obese are more likely to develop complications of pregnancy such as gestational diabetes, preeclampsia or hypertensive disease (high blood pressure). They are also at a higher risk for preterm birth and growth abnormalities of the baby. Most importantly, there is an increased risk of miscarriage or for the baby to be stillborn, when the baby dies before birth. 

Being obese does not mean that a woman must have a cesarean delivery, but the likelihood increases. Women who are obese and have a cesarean delivery are at increased risk for surgical complications such as wound infections or blood clots after surgery.

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