OBESITY during pregnancy, independent of its health consequences such as diabetes, may account for the higher risk of giving birth to an unusually large infant, according to researchers at the National Institutes of Health.
Macrosomia – large body size at birth – is common among children born to obese women, particularly those who have gestational diabetes (high blood sugar during pregnancy). Macrosomia increases the risk that an infant will experience bone fracture during delivery. It also increases the likelihood that the infant will need to be delivered by caesarean section. Having a large infant also increases a mother’s risk for postpartum hemorrhage, or excessive bleeding at birth.