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Gestational diabetes: symptoms, causes

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Gestational diabetes: symptoms, causes

The paper ” Gestational Diabetes: Symptoms, Causes’ is a perfect example of a research proposal on health sciences and medicine. Who We AreWe are a large non-government institution in the UK working for people with gestational diabetes, conducting various research programs and campaigning and helping people live with the condition. We have a large number of members and we represent the interests of women with gestational diabetes by working towards improving the standards of quality of treatment for gestational diabetes by extensive research work. Our mission is to help women recover from gestational diabetes and reduce chances of developing gestational diabetes

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      • Our Vision is:
  • To provide better treatments for curing gestational diabetes
  • To create awareness and understanding about gestational diabetes and its causes
  • To work with women suffering from gestational diabetes and improve their quality of life
      • Our Values are:
  • To put the interests of women with gestational diabetes first.
  • To be the best source of information on gestational diabetes.
  • To work in partnership with all those affected by gestational diabetes.
  • To be honest, ethical, and accountable.

ObjectiveIn order to have an effective plan laid out, it is necessary to state our objectives which will outline our step-by-step approach of fighting gestational diabetes. These are:

  • Campaigning: We aim at influencing the government to achieve the high-quality standards of care for patients of gestational diabetes by developing strong policies.
  • Educating and Awareness: We aim to work hard to raise awareness of gestational diabetes and the causes of the same.
  • Information: We would provide high-quality information to the women suffering from gestational diabetes and to other healthcare professionals with the help of leaflets, books, and the Internet. For this, we would also operate a 24-hour available Careline where anyone can call and enquire about any gestational diabetes-related health problem.
  • Research: We aim to carry out high-class researches in the field of gestational diabetes in order to come up with easy and economical solutions to deal with it.
  • Treatment: To provide patients suffering from gestational diabetes with first-class treatments which are also affordable.

Target GroupIt has been found out that there are certain groups of women who are more prone to develop gestational diabetes who will constitute our target group which is formed of women who:

  • have a family history of diabetes especially type-2 diabetes
  • Have suffered from gestational diabetes in their previous pregnancy.
  • Have experienced a birth defect in a previous pregnancy.
  • Are obese that is a BMI greater than 29.
  • Have a relatively older maternal age (over the age of 30).
  • Have suffered from a spontaneous miscarriage or a previous.
  • Have experienced a previous delivery of a large baby that is greater than 9 pounds.
  • Have a Hispanic, First Nations, or African-American origin.

The target group has been formed based on a study conducted by health professionals from the University Hospital Zurich. The results of the study stated that out of the 772 patients who were tested over a period of 21 months, 10. 2% of them suffered from GDM that is 53 women. Of these women:(University Hospital Zurich, 1999)Introduction of gestational diabetesWhat is Gestational DiabetesA temporary condition that occurs during pregnancy is called Gestational diabetes sometimes also referred to as glucose intolerance of pregnancy or Gestational diabetes mellitus(GDM). It is known to affect 2 to 4 percent of pregnant women and increases the risk of developing diabetes in both, the mother and the child. It can be tested between the 26th or 28th week of pregnancy. Gestational diabetes is different from type-1 diabetes which occurs right from the childhood of a person in which the body does not produce any insulin and from type-2 diabetes as that occurs almost by the age of 45 and is governed by the age factor. The symptoms of gestational diabetes are not very clear; however constant thirst, increased urination, vomiting and nausea, blurred vision, and very high fatigue are some indicators. (AMA, 2006)
CausesThe changes that occur in the hormones in a women’s body during pregnancy lead to the development of gestational diabetes. A number of hormones are produced during pregnancy which blocks the insulin thereby leading to the development of gestational diabetes. In normal cases, gestational diabetes almost ceases as soon as the baby is born, however, studies have shown some women may continue to suffer from diabetes. EffectDeveloping Gestational diabetes also has other ripple effects attached to it. While in most of the cases diabetes disappears once the baby is born, according to certain studies it has been shown that almost 40 percent of women suffering from gestational diabetes will also go on to have a type- 2 diabetes. This necessitates screening for type-2 diabetes if one is suffering from gestational diabetes. Another problem is the risky effect which the high blood glucose levels can have on a baby who is developing. This is more prevalent in cases in women who have not controlled their blood glucose levels at normal levels initially. This can lead to miscarriage or birth defects. However, the likelihood of such kind of problems to arise is less as gestational diabetes will not appear until well after that critical period. If gestational diabetes is not controlled properly it may lead to the growth of a large baby which then necessitates the need for instrumental deliveries. Such babies need special care during the postpartum period. Also, there are few risks involved for the babies who are born to mothers with Gestational Diabetes such as that of shoulder dystocia (birth trauma), macrosomia (large, fat baby), prolonged newborn jaundice, respiratory distress syndrome, neonatal hypoglycemia (low blood sugar in the newborn) and low blood calcium. A recent study has shown that women with gestational diabetes are also susceptible to develop cardiovascular risk. This is due to certain complications that might arise during pregnancy and predispose women to develop vascular and metabolic diseases later in their life. However, the relation between a pregnancy complication and the development of coronary heart disease remains unexplained. (BMJ 2002)Also, pregnant women who develop gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) have a risk of developing periodontitis in the future. This was found out according to a study conducted by healthcare professionals from Tulane University in New Orleans. According to the study it was found out that the possibilities of developing periodontitis were 44. 8% amongst pregnant women suffering from GDM. Hence it is necessary to improve the oral health of people and treat periodontal disease before or during pregnancy in order to not only reduce the maternal and infant morbidity connected with GDM during pregnancy but also avoid type 1 diabetes later in life. (Am J Obstet Gynecol, 2006)CureTreatment of gestational diabetes is like a plan that would encompass following several actions. The basic aim is to reduce the risk of developing gestational diabetes, passing on diabetes to your child, and reducing the risk of developing diabetes after the birth of the child. Various measures that need to be taken for the same are:

  1. Having a balanced diet: Women during their pregnancy should control the amount of carbohydrate intake in their diet and have a proper diet plan chalked out by a healthcare professional.
  2. Regular exercise: A recent study has shown that regular exercise proves beneficial and might also prevent the need for insulin injections.
  3. Observing blood glucose levels: Pregnant women should take a simple home blood sugar test almost 1 hour after each of their meals. It is recommended that women who take insulin should test their blood sugar even before their meals.
  4. Observing fetal growth and well-being: Keeping a check on the fetal movements or fetal growth can be helpful as one might be able to evaluate the size of the fetus, and in case of a large size, one might want to take insulin injections.
  5. Regular medical checkups: The chances of developing high blood pressure amongst women with gestational diabetes are twice as high as compared to other pregnant women. Hence, it is necessary to have regular medical visits in order to keep a check on their blood pressure.
  6. Insulin injections: Lastly, if the blood sugar levels are going over the acceptable range even after following at least 2 weeks a balanced diet and regular exercise then one might have to take insulin injections.
  7. Controlling/treating hypoglycemia: The risk of developing hypoglycemia or low blood glucose increases when women undertake a program in order to have tight control over their blood glucose levels and hence it is necessary to keep a ready source of carbohydrates with them at all times.
  8. According to a very recent study it has been found out that women with gestational diabetes can be precisely identified by measuring the fasting capillary glucose. Few healthcare professionals from the Orebro University Hospital, Sweden assessed the diagnostic properties of fasting capillary glucose as a screening test for finding out gestational diabetes in a lesser risk population of few Swedish women. (BJOG, 2006)

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