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Obesity and obstacles to pregnancy

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NEW YORK -

Jassira Espaillat-Batista always dreamed about being a mom. But seven years ago it didn't seem possible.

She weighed 340 pounds, had high blood pressure and was pre-diabetic. Her doctor gave her devastating news. "The chances of me conceiving would be very slim, practically impossible," she said.

The 33-Year-old says that was her wakeup call. "That's when I started researching weight loss surgery," she said.

Dr. Mitchell Roslin with Lenox Hill Hospital, says a growing number of obese women are resorting to surgery to help fertility. "Having excess fat changes the concentration of the hormones that actually regulate menstruation and ovulation," he said.

It's estimated about half of American women over 20 are either overweight or obese. Doctors say losing even 10 percent of your body weight can help increase fertility and help prevent pregnancy complications.

"There is a high chance of miscarriage, there's a higher chance of high gestational weight baby secondary to gestational diabetes,

Jassira lost 66 pounds just six months after surgery. She also got a big surprise. "Yes, I was pregnant," she said.

She now has two boys and weighs 160 pounds. "If someone would have told me then that this would be my life now I would have laughed in their faces," Jassira said.

She says she's happy with her weight and even happier with her family.

Vinita Nair - CBS News

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