In a study of 4,000 pregnant women, researchers found that almost 1 in 5 overweight women had to undergo an emergency Caesarean Section birth because the muscles in their uterus failed. The research suggests obesity impairs the ability of the uterus to contract sufficiently in order to dilate the cervix and deliver the baby.
The team from the University of Liverpool’s Physiology department found that obese women were 3.5 times more likely to require a Caesarean for slow labour than normal weight women.
Obese women who gave birth vaginally were also found to encounter other problems in child birth – more than twice as many (6%) experienced excessive bleeding following delivery compared with normal weight women (3%). This blood loss was also attributed to poor uterine activity in the obese group. Heavy bleeding occurs when the uterus is unable to contract well enough to clamp off the blood vessels that are sheared following delivery of the placenta.
Professor Sue Wray commented: “Our research shows overweight women are at considerably higher risk of having to undergo an emergency Caesarean Section birth and find labour a more difficult experience than normal weight women. Interestingly, when we took uterus muscle samples from the overweight women and studied them in the lab they also performed poorly and contracted less well than matched samples from normal weight women”.
The research team found that less calcium was able to enter the uterine cells of the obese women to support uterus muscles in contracting during labour.
Professor Wray explained: “We suspect one reason preventing sufficient levels of calcium entering the uterus muscles is the high levels of cholesterol in an obese woman’s bloodstream. This could disrupt cell membranes and signalling pathways, including calcium entry. We will be investigating this further in future studies.”
Dr Siobhan Quenby from the University of Liverpool’s Obstetrics department commented: “In the meantime it is vital pre-pregnancy advice and counselling is available to women about the implications of weight on childbirth. Pregnancies among overweight women must be classified as high risk pregnancies and appropriate antenatal care should be provided so they receive the optimum care during maternity.”
The research, funded by the Medical Research Council, has been published in the British Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology.
Joanna Robotham | alfa
Millions through license revenues
27.04.2017 | Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn
New High-Performance Center Translational Medical Engineering
26.04.2017 | Fraunhofer ITEM
More and more automobile companies are focusing on body parts made of carbon fiber reinforced plastics (CFRP). However, manufacturing and repair costs must be further reduced in order to make CFRP more economical in use. Together with the Volkswagen AG and five other partners in the project HolQueSt 3D, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) has developed laser processes for the automatic trimming, drilling and repair of three-dimensional components.
Automated manufacturing processes are the basis for ultimately establishing the series production of CFRP components. In the project HolQueSt 3D, the LZH has...
Reflecting the structure of composites found in nature and the ancient world, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have synthesized thin carbon nanotube (CNT) textiles that exhibit both high electrical conductivity and a level of toughness that is about fifty times higher than copper films, currently used in electronics.
"The structural robustness of thin metal films has significant importance for the reliable operation of smart skin and flexible electronics including...
The nearby, giant radio galaxy M87 hosts a supermassive black hole (BH) and is well-known for its bright jet dominating the spectrum over ten orders of magnitude in frequency. Due to its proximity, jet prominence, and the large black hole mass, M87 is the best laboratory for investigating the formation, acceleration, and collimation of relativistic jets. A research team led by Silke Britzen from the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany, has found strong indication for turbulent processes connecting the accretion disk and the jet of that galaxy providing insights into the longstanding problem of the origin of astrophysical jets.
Supermassive black holes form some of the most enigmatic phenomena in astrophysics. Their enormous energy output is supposed to be generated by the...
The probability to find a certain number of photons inside a laser pulse usually corresponds to a classical distribution of independent events, the so-called...
Microprocessors based on atomically thin materials hold the promise of the evolution of traditional processors as well as new applications in the field of flexible electronics. Now, a TU Wien research team led by Thomas Müller has made a breakthrough in this field as part of an ongoing research project.
Two-dimensional materials, or 2D materials for short, are extremely versatile, although – or often more precisely because – they are made up of just one or a...
20.04.2017 | Event News
18.04.2017 | Event News
03.04.2017 | Event News
27.04.2017 | Life Sciences
27.04.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
27.04.2017 | Earth Sciences