Cookies on this website
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Continue' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

Obesity raises the chances of complications and medical interventions in childbirth. But a new study by Oxford University shows the risks are not the same for all obese women.

For otherwise healthy women, the increase in risk with obesity may not be as great as previously suspected.

'The increased risk was fairly modest for obese women who did not have conditions such as high blood pressure, diabetes or a previous caesarean section, and the risks were quite low if the woman had given birth previously,' said lead researcher Dr Jennifer Hollowell of the National Perinatal Epidemiology Unit at Oxford University.

'It is important to appreciate that we are not saying that obesity isn't important or that obesity doesn't increase a woman's risks during pregnancy,' she added. 'We found that around half of very obese women giving birth in obstetric units have medical problems or pregnancy complications when admitted. But our study focused on women who were obese but otherwise healthy when they went into labour, and some of them had much lower risks than might have been expected.'

Read more (Oxford University News)

Similar stories

New Research Highlights Importance of Early Years Development on Future Wellbeing

Oxford researchers involved nearly 4,000 children across the UK in three specially developed science lessons to educate pupils about brain development during early childhood. The SEEN (Secondary Education around Early Neurodevelopment) project was commissioned and funded by KindredSquared and is part of a wider drive to increase public understanding of how early experiences can shape the adults we become.

Study reveals ‘stop-eating’ response to DNA damage

A new study from the MRC Weatherall Institute of Molecular Medicine sheds light on the mechanism by which DNA damage suppresses appetite, a finding with implications for understanding the appetite lowering side-effects of chemotherapy.

World’s first cancer prevention trial to test diabetes drug in patients with high-risk genetic condition

Oxford researchers will lead a £2m national cancer prevention trial to assess the benefit a diabetes drug has in patients with Li Fraumeni Syndrome (LFS), a genetic condition that impacts 1 in 20,000 people worldwide and puts them at a 70-90% lifetime risk of cancer.

Oxford-led research maps milestone stage of human development for the first time

Scientists have shed light on an important stage of early embryonic development that has never been fully mapped out in humans before.

Overusing antibiotics? Find out with Antibiotic Footprint Calculator

To help reduce the overuse of antibiotics, Oxford researchers today released a new, easy to use online tool – Antibiotic Footprint Calculator – that could make an important contribution in the fight against antimicrobial resistance (AMR), one of the world’s most significant emerging threats to public health.