Gestational weight gain and pregnancy outcomes in obese women: how much is enough?

Obstet Gynecol. 2007 Oct;110(4):752-8. doi: 10.1097/01.AOG.0000278819.17190.87.


Objective: To examine the effect of gestational weight change on pregnancy outcomes in obese women.

Methods: A population-based cohort study of 120,251 pregnant, obese women delivering full-term, liveborn, singleton infants was examined to assess the risk of four pregnancy outcomes (preeclampsia, cesarean delivery, small for gestational age births, and large for gestational age births) by obesity class and total gestational weight gain.

Results: Gestational weight gain incidence for overweight or obese pregnant women, less than the currently recommended 15 lb, was associated with a significantly lower risk of preeclampsia, cesarean delivery, and large for gestational age birth and higher risk of small for gestational age birth. These results were similar for each National Institutes of Health obesity class (30-34.9, 35-35.9, and 40.0 kg/m(2)), but at different amounts of gestational weight gain.

Conclusion: Limited or no weight gain in obese pregnant women has favorable pregnancy outcomes.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Birth Weight / physiology
  • Cesarean Section / statistics & numerical data
  • Cohort Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Infant, Small for Gestational Age
  • Missouri / epidemiology
  • Obesity / classification
  • Obesity / complications*
  • Pre-Eclampsia / epidemiology
  • Pre-Eclampsia / etiology
  • Pre-Eclampsia / physiopathology
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications* / physiopathology
  • Pregnancy Outcome*
  • Weight Gain / physiology*