Gestational Diabetes Mellitus (GDM)

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Gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) is an intolerance of glucose documented for the first time during pregnancy. It is usually a short-term type of diabetes and the most common health problem with pregnant women. GBM is caused by the way the hormones in pregnancy affect the mother. GDM accounts for 5-7% of all pregnancies (American Diabetes Association, 2010). During pregnancy the placenta develops and becomes the main bond between the mother and the baby. It is used to make sure the baby has and gets enough nutrients. The placenta makes several hormones which make it hard for insulin to control blood glucose and block the action of the mother’s insulin in her body (American Diabetes Association, 2010). Hormonal changes during the pregnancy causes the body to be less sensitive to insulin. Insulin has the job of opening up the cells so that the glucose can get inside regulating the amount of glucose in the blood while glucose is the amount of sugar in the blood stream. In pregnancy, the body needs to make three times more insulin for control of the blood sugar. GDM is usually found within the second trimester of a pregnancy and increases until the end of the pregnancy. Usually within a few hours of delivery the condition resolves itself (American Diabetes Association, 2010).

For people with no problems the intestines and stomach digest the carbohydrates that we take in into glucose, which is the body’s main source of energy. After we digest our food the glucose moves to the bloodstream. To get the glucose out of your blood and into the cells of your body the pancreas makes a hormone called insulin (Mayo Clinic, 2010). When you have gestational diabetes either your body does not make enough insulin during your pregna...

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Bennett, L.B., Bolem, S. Wilson, L.M., Bass, E.B., Nicholson, W.K. (2009). Performance Characteristics of Postpartum Screening Tests for Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus in Women with a History of Gestational Diabetes Mellitus: A Systematic Review, 18(7), Retrieved from http://lib-proxy.calumet.purdue.edu:2461/ehost/pdfviewer/pdfviewer?hid=15&sid=af725124-1c4c-4d18-9e92-35d14ad23d66%40sessionmgr4&vid=15

Diabetes Information Hub. (2011). Retrieved from http://diabetesinformationhub.com/GestationalDiabetes.php

Mayo Clinic. (2010). Gestational Diabetes. Retrieved from http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/gestational-diabetes/DS00316

Steady Health. (2011). Gestational Diabetes Complications. Retrieved from http://www.steadyhealth.com/about/complications_of_gestational_diabetes.html

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