Postpartum Care and Contraception in Obese Women.


Postpartum obese women have an increased risk of breastfeeding difficulties and depression. Retaining the pregnancy weight at 6 months postpartum predicts long-term obesity. Risks for weight retention include excessive gestational weight gain, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, diet, exercise, depression, and duration of breastfeeding. Exercise and reducing total caloric intake promote postpartum weight loss. Intrauterine devices and contraceptive implants are the most effective contraceptives for obese women. Contraceptive pills, patches, and vaginal rings are effective options; however, obese women should be made aware of a potential increased risk of venous thromboembolism. Vasectomy and hysteroscopic sterilization carry the least surgical risk for obese women.