Gestational Diabetes: Is A Cesarean Necessary If You Have Gestational Diabetes?

I am three months pregnant and had gestational diabetes during my first pregnancy. According to the doctor that was the reason I ended up with a cesarean. My blood sugar levels are good right now. What are the possibilities of having a vaginal birth this time?


Peg Plumbo CNM

Peg Plumbo has been a certified nurse-midwife (CNM) since 1976. She has assisted at over 1,000 births and currently teaches in the... Read more

Gestational diabetes alone is not a medical indication for a cesarean. In fact, the baby would be at more risk of respiratory distress following a cesarean. However, the prevalence of larger than average birth weights in mothers who have gestational diabetes can increase the likelihood of a surgical delivery.

Your chances of having a vaginal birth depend on a number of factors. Make sure you see a care provider who believes in vaginal birth after caesarean (VBAC) and ask for their statistics and those of the hospital. Some just give lip service to it but in the end advise against it for a variety of reasons.

Baby weight often increases with the next pregnancy, so if macrosomia (a big baby) was the indication for the first cesarean, this may tend to recur.

Your care provider should inform you of the specific indication for your first cesarean. If you feel dissatisfied with the answers he or she is providing or if you feel that you are not getting the whole story, it is never too late to change providers.

About two thirds of the women who have gestational diabetes with their first pregnancy, develop it again in a subsequent pregnancy. Exercise and an excellent diet may prevent recurrence of the gestational diabetes and could prevent you from becoming an overt diabetic in later years.

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