5. Your risk of complications drops, but doesn’t go away
A 2005 study in the journal Obstetrics and Gynecology found that women who had weight-loss surgery developed pregnancy-induced hypertension and gestational diabetes at rates similar to those of healthy-weight women who’d never been obese or had weight-loss surgery.
But since many women who get weight-loss surgery are still plus-size to some degree when they become pregnant, moms-to-be can expect their doctors to keep a closer watch on their pregnancies, says Sharon Phelan, an obstetrician in Albuquerque, New Mexico, who has treated many plus-size women during pregnancy, including women who have had weight-loss surgery.
“You’re still at risk for gestational diabetes [if you’re plus-size but have had weight-loss surgery], but the risk is far less than before surgery,” says Phelan.
For example, Celeste Olivares, a 41-year-old nurse and mother of two, lost more than 150 pounds from gastric banding and was 237 pounds when she became pregnant with her first child in 2005. Her diabetes and cardiomyopathy (a form of heart inflammation) had gone away completely after the weight loss, but she continued to monitor her blood sugar during pregnancy. At 30 weeks, her blood sugar rose slightly and her doctor put her on insulin as a protective measure.