[Obese pregnant women have complicated deliveries]

Ugeskr Laeger. 2003 Mar 3;165(10):1027-30.
[Article in Danish]


Introduction: On the background of the increasing prevalence of overweight and obesity, we wanted to describe the deliveries among this group of women.

Material and methods: A prospective study of 798 pregnant women during 1 1/2 year. According to Body-Mass-Index (BMI) all referred women were divided into three groups considering their age and parity. A) 270 pregnant women with BMI 26-30. B) 132 pregnant women with BMI > 30. C) 320 pregnant women with BMI 20-25, the control group.

Results: The deliveries were induced at 9% and 11% in group A and group B, making a significant difference to the induction of 5% among the controls (p < 0.05). The most frequent reason for induction was graviditas prolongata. This was the case for 5% in group A and 6% in group B compared to 3% in group C. This was not significant (p = 0.24). The rates of cesarean section were 19% and 24% in group A and B, making a significant difference to the rate of 9% among the controls (p < 0.01). Disproportio foetopelvina and late decelerations were the most frequent reason for cesarean section during delivery. Disproportio foetopelvina discovered during delivery was the case for 5% in group A and 8% in group B compared to 1% in group C. This difference is significant with p < 0.05.

Discussion: Our study shows that obese and pregnant women have a high rate of induction and postdatism. They have a higher rate of cesarean section compared to normal weight women and get more frequently cesarean section during delivery because of disproportio foetopelvina. Health service professionals working with pregnant women should be aware of the overweight problems.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • English Abstract

MeSH terms

  • Body Mass Index
  • Cesarean Section
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Labor, Induced
  • Obesity / complications*
  • Obstetric Labor Complications / etiology*
  • Parity
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications / etiology
  • Prospective Studies