Maternal Obesity Linked To Increased Risk of Congenital Malformations in Offspring Interview with:
Dr. Martina Persson

Clinical Epidemiology Unit
Department of Medicine Solna
Karolinska University Hospita What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: It is well known that obesity increases risks of several maternal, fetal and neonatal complications including congenital malformations. However, it has not been clear if risks of malformations are increased also in offspring of normal weight mothers or if risks increase with degree of maternal obesity.

In this study, we found progressively increasing risks of major congenital malformations in the offspring with a mother’s overweight and obesity severity. What should readers take away from your report?

Response: The most sensitive period of fetal organ development is the first eight weeks of gestation and it is during this time a mother´s BMI may influence risks of malformations. Thus, it is important to try to obtain a normal bodyweight before conception. What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?

Response: Our results should be confirmed in other populations and mechanisms behind the increased risks of malformations associated with maternal obesity should be further explored. Is there anything else you would like to add?

Response: Obesity is a major health problem in many countries in the world. Preventive measures to halt the obesity epidemic should be implemented at all levels of society. Thank you for your contribution to the community.


Note: Content is Not intended as medical advice. Please consult your health care provider regarding your specific medical condition and questions.

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Last Updated on June 15, 2017 by Marie Benz MD FAAD