Diabetes is on the rise among pregnant women, posing the serious health problems for mothers to be and their unborn children, research suggests.
It can endanger the mother and also raise the risk of miscarriage, stillbirth or birth defects, the research carried out by doctors indicates.
Alarmingly, many women have been discouraged from giving birth, specifically because, a big proportion of the population; get complications due to pressure and diabetes.
Morris Nsanzebona a researcher at the University of Kabgayi, Gitarama made a survey in towns to find out the level of care women with such threats receive.
The survey found out that diabetes is a big problem and probably a nationwide trend occurring hand-in-hand with obesity which also carries other risk factors for birth complications.
"It can also lead to children, who are at risk of developing diabetes and obesity later in life," Nsanzebona, who is also a research scientist, said.
Rosemary Nsanze says the research findings will be used to educate women, how to access appropriate treatment and care.
She says that, to tell a woman that she might miscarry or her baby might die, or might have abnormalities brings a fear in them which is not good.
She adds that in general when one is pregnant, she is pretty vulnerable to those sorts of messages and need check ups.
"The diseases like diabetes need careful watching, with patients self monitoring the blood sugar levels and taking insulin to address any imbalances," she advises.
She recommends regular trips to the doctors and specialists to ensure the treatment is working properly.
Dr. Deo Mbonigaba, the president of the Rural Doctors Association says that many women do not know that they have diabetes and pressure which they actually need to know so that they get enough care and avoid complications when pregnant.
Mbonigaba adds that it’s important for all women to have proper ante-natal care, pre-theoretical counseling both before and after they actually conceive as well as appropriate sterilisation of their diabetes because they are many in number.
"Because we know if the diabetes is not looked after properly, then the health of the baby and the mother may be at risk. So we have to get the right type of assessment and management of people’s diabetes right first, which involves using members of the health care team to help look after that woman and her baby" says Mbonigaba.
Mbonigaba says that pregnant mothers require gynecologists, obstetricians, diabetes educators, and midwives who are part of a health care team to help in counseling and treatment in case one is sick.
He says it depends on the patient and the ability to monitor her properly.
Didier Nyarwaya a doctor and chairman of the Medical Association’s (AMA) Rural Reference group, says that only a small proportion of women would need to be moved to the city for the last couple of months of their pregnancy
"They’ve got to be looked after, these ladies, they may well have to travel to a medical centre to have their child, but for a large part of their pregnancy they can be looked after conjointly with a gynecologist and a specialist obstetrician involved very often," he said.
He adds that women in need of doctors in the rural areas fail to reach them because it’s sometimes not easy to access all members of that team without the women having to travel large distances, to access the appropriate levels of care.
"for anyone living in rural villages, going to see a doctor can be an exercise in frustration because of the far distanced hospitals where there is the long wait to get an appointment" says Nyarwaya.