Three classes of obesity were identified with class one assessing women with the lowest severity of obesity.
The research found 21 per cent of women with class I obesity developed gestational diabetes, compared with 28 per cent with class III.
Women with class I obesity had half the risk of developing pre-eclampsia compared class III. (2.8% versus 6.2%).
There was an increased risk of caesarean delivery, with a 40 per cent risk in class I, a 45 per cent risk in class II and 54 per cent in class III. This compared with the national average of 33 per cent.
26 per cent of women with class I obesity had a large baby compared with 33 per cent in class III.
“Our study highlights the importance of weight management in women of child-bearing age, not just during pregnancy, but also at the time of conception,” Sarah said.
“Encouragingly, we also demonstrated that with good obstetric care, we can mitigate some of the risks associated with obesity in pregnancy.
“Our research not only provides individuals with an incentive to manage their own weight, but also offers health providers and policy-makers more evidence to support pre-conception weight management initiatives.”