Introduction: Diabetes is the most common medical complication of pregnancy. It can be associated with many complications for mother and fetus. Gestational diabetes is also one of the main health issues in Iran. Therefore, the present study is aimed at a deeper understanding of women’s experiences of gestational diabetes and their perceived needs to inform future lifestyle interventions.

Methods: This qualitative content analysis study was carried out in 2015. Participants were pregnant women diagnosed with gestational diabetes in the 24th to 36th week of pregnancy, who were referred to the clinics affiliated with Shahid Beheshti Medical Science University in Tehran, Iran. In-depth interviews were conducted with participants, using semi-structured questions. Interviews were audio taped and transcribed verbatim. Conventional content analysis was carried out for data analysis. Interviews continued until data saturation was obtained. Data were coded in MAXQDA software (version 11). 

Results: Content analysis highlighted two themes; educational needs and need to support. The former was featured with five main categories: information sources, education process, unknown and known, weaknesses of public information system, and eagerness to learn. The latter was featured with two main categories: family support and social support.

Conclusion: Clarifying the needs of the mothers with gestational diabetes, leads to better and proper education planning and a program toward the improvement of health, self-care, and prevention of diabetes.


Keywords: Diabetes, Pregnancy, Women, Needs, Content analysis
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