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Asian women with diabetes are particularly likely to have poor pregnancy outcomes, a new UK study reveals.

The research found Asian women were nearly five times more likely than Caucasians to suffer a pregnancy-related loss or congenital abnormality.

The results follow a Confidential Enquiry into Maternal and Child Health report earlier this month warning that women with diabetes were missing out on treatment to reduce their risk of pregnancy problems.

Dr Evelyn Verheijen, specialist registrar in obstetrics and gynaecology at Queens Park Hospital, Blackburn, said: 'There are particular groups within society that are prone to poor outcomes and diabetes makes it worse. There is much more type 2 in the first place in Asian people. It comes earlier so it comes at child-bearing age.'

The study of 202 diabetes-

affected pregnancies in Yorkshire also found women who used insulin to control type 2 diabetes early in pregnancy were at a 10-fold increased risk of congenital malformation.

'This is an unexpected finding as often women with type 2 diabetes are started on insulin prior to pregnancy to try to optimise control,' said the researchers, whose study was published in the latest issue of BJOG.

Asian women suffered all 14 stillbirths and infant deaths and 13 of the 15 congenital malformations in the study group.

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