Women with diabetes are more than four times more likely to have a stillborn baby than those without the disease, found a new study.
Researchers at the University of Glasgow looked at the records of nearly 4,000 Scottish diabetes mothers.
They found that high blood sugar levels in pregnant diabetics are a "risk factor" in stillbirths.
The body mass index (BMI) of women with diabetes is also a critical factor, the study found.
Researchers also find that one-third of stillbirths in women with diabetes have occurred at full length.
Dr Sharon Makin, who conducted the study, stated: "It is vital that we, as healthcare professionals, find better ways to support women throughout their fertile age in order to optimize weight and blood sugar, so that when you enter pregnancy, whether planned or unplanned, they are better prepared and the risk of adverse outcomes is reduced.
"It is important for women with diabetes to have this in mind and have access to appropriate pre-conceptual advice. , even if they do not plan a pregnancy immediately.
"Women with diabetes should also contact their diabetes clinic as soon as they receive a positive pregnancy test so that we can see and support them early."
The study states that early delivery may be considered an "attractive opportunity" but that more research is needed before recommendations are made for optimal timelines.
Dr. Makin stated that the question "must be asked whether early delivery of all diabetic pregnancies can prevent these terms stillbirths. "
She said, 'We don't know the answer to that. The optimal delivery period in such a pregnancy is unclear. "
The study identified 5,392 babies born to 3,884 mothers with diabetes in Scotland between April 1
Mothers with type 1 diabetes were more than three times more likely to have a stillbirth, while those with type 2 were at least four times more likely.
The birth rate was 16.1 per 1000 births for women with type 1 diabetes and 22.9 per 1000 births for type 2 diabetes compared to 4.9 per 1,000 births in the general population.
Type 1 women who have had stillbirths have higher than average blood sugar levels throughout pregnancy, while pre-pregnancy levels are a more important predictor of stillbirth in those with type 2.
Babies with the most high and low birth weight
Dr Emily Burns, Head of Research Communications at Diabetes UK, stated: "Most women with diabetes have a healthy pregnancy and healthy babies, but this study reinforces the importance of helping women to manage your blood glucose levels if you are planning a pregnancy, h to reduce as much as possible the risk of complications.
'In addition, suggesting that losing weight for women with type 2 diabetes with excess weight may help reduce this risk as well.
"We need research to find better ways to predict who is most at risk of pregnancy complications to ensure that support can be given to those who need it most . "