Article Text

Download PDFPDF
Obesity in pregnancy: a major healthcare issue
  1. Elly Tsoi1,
  2. Humera Shaikh2,
  3. Stephen Robinson1,
  4. Tiong Ghee Teoh2
  1. 1Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, St Mary's Hospital, Imperial College London, London, UK
  2. 2Department of Metabolic Medicine, St Mary's Hospital, Imperial College London, London, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr Stephen Robinson, Department of Metabolic Medicine, St Mary's Hospital, Imperial College London, London W2 1NY, UK; stephen.robinson{at}


The prevalence of maternal obesity is rising, up to 20% in some antenatal clinics, in line with the prevalence of obesity in the general population. Maternal obesity poses significant risks for all aspects of pregnancy. There are risks to the mother with increased maternal mortality, pre-eclampsia, diabetes and thromboembolic disorders. There is increased perinatal mortality, macrosomia and congenital malformation. The obstetric management, with increased operative delivery rate, and increased difficulty of anaesthesia, carry risk for the obese mother. Long term complications associated with maternal obesity include increased likelihood of maternal weight retention and exacerbation of obesity. This review aims to discuss these risks with a view to suggesting management to ensure the best outcome for both the mother and the offspring.

  • Pregnancy
  • maternal obesity
  • maternal medicine

Statistics from

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.


  • Competing interests None.