Poster Presentation

Friday, July 13, 2007
9:30 AM - 10:15 AM

Friday, July 13, 2007
3:15 PM - 4:00 PM
This presentation is part of : Poster Presentation III
Obesity on Vagal Tone and HbA1c during Pregnancy
Rebecca J. Helmreich, MSN, RN, School of Nursing, University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston, Houston, TX, USA
Learning Objective #1: Discuss the differences between pregnant obese and non obese women on vagal responses, HbA1c and oxygenation at 20, 28 and 36 weeks gestation.
Learning Objective #2: Explore potential transdisciplinary interventions to increase heart rate variability such as exercise, or proper weight gain during pregnancy to imporve maternal and infant perinatal outcomes.

  Purpose: to examine the effect of gestational weight gain in obese and non-obese women during pregnancy, on vagal tone, HbA1c, SpO2, and the incidence of pregnancy complications.

 Design: Comparison study with repeat measures

 Sample, Setting: The convenience sample will consist of 40 pregnant women who will be observed at three times for 30 minutes at 20, 28, and 36 weeks gestation.

 Methods: The woman will be comfortably positioned in a semi-sitting position and ECG leads will be placed to obtain her HR signal. During the observation, subjects will be monitored for vagal tone and oxygenation. The blood for HbA1c will be drawn after the observation periods. 

 Findings:  Files of sequential HR/HP will be stored on an IBM-compatible computer; MXedit software will be used to graphically display the HP data, to edit outliers, and to quantify the HP and the amplitudes of RSA. SPSS software will be used to perform all statistical analyses for the association between initial and repeat measures of HbA1c values with weight gain and obesity conditions.  The tentative analysis plan will include descriptive statistics, t-tests for two group comparisons, and, repeated measures ANOVA to test the group differences with changes over time.  Correlations and regression analyses will be performed to examine the association of obesity and levels of weight gain on vagal response, HbA1c, oxygenation, and pregnancy complications and birth outcomes. 


 Conclusions: Although it is known that obesity affects HbA1c and SpO2, no data are available for advanced heart period measurement on vagal responses in relation to HbA1c and oxygenation in obese pregnant women.  This dissertation project will lead to further research and underpin clinical practice, leading to interventions that promote vagal responses and positive pregnancy outcomes for mothers and infants.