Gestational Diabetes and Thyroid Disease in Pregnancy
Gestational diabetes is becoming increasingly common due to women having children at a later age and also the epidemic of obesity in the community.
In most women, strict dietary and light exercise measures are all that is needed to control gestational diabetes. However, in more difficult cases, insulin therapy is required. In women who only develop diabetes during pregnancy, the diabetes often resolves after birth and medication is not required. However, these women do have an increased risk of developing diabetes in the future.
Thyroid problems are very common during pregnancy and may require the use of thyroxine if the thyroid is underactive. The amount of thyroxine required during pregnancy is greater than in the non-pregnant state, and therefore some women who may only have a mildly underactive thyroid will require thyroxine during the course of their pregnancy.
An overactive thyroid is much more difficult to treat during pregnancy. It requires the use of anti-thyroid tablets and requires close monitoring.
Maintaining a normal thyroid state during pregnancy is essential for the health of mother and baby.