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New research aims to reduce the risk of complications in overweight pregnant women

Women who are overweight have a greater risk of experiencing complications during pregnancy and childbirth. In a new study that is being financed by a grant of DKK 6.5 million from the Novo Nordisk Foundation, Julie Glavind from Aarhus University and Aarhus University Hospital will establish whether any of these complications can be avoided by inducing labour earlier.

More than twelve per cent of all Danish women of childbearing age are severely overweight with a body mass index (BMI) in excess of thirty. And the higher the woman's BMI before pregnancy, the greater the risk of experiencing complications during pregnancy and childbirth. Overweight can e.g. lead to preeclampsia, pregnancy-related diabetes, the need for a caesarean section and, in the worst case, stillbirth.

Currently, women with a BMI of thirty or higher have the possibility of induced labour once they are 7-12 days past their due date. Julie Glavind, who is specialty registrar and PhD at the Department of Clinical Medicine, will work with her research group to establish whether the risk of caesarean section and a range of other complications can be reduced by inducing labour one week before the due date. The study involves 1,900 pregnant women, and the majority of maternity wards in Denmark are expected to be able to participate.


Specialty Registrar & PhD Julie Glavind
Aarhus University, Department of Clinical Medicine and
Aarhus University Hospital, Department of Gynaecology and Obstetrics
Mobile: (+45) 2444 6204
Email: julie.glavind@clin.au.dk