High pregnancy weight gain increases risk of early gestational diabetes: Study - Hindustan Times
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High pregnancy weight gain increases risk of early gestational diabetes: Study

ByVicky Pathare
Jan 12, 2024 05:36 AM IST

Gestational Diabetes Mellitus is (GDM) associated with an increased risk of adverse maternal and foetal outcomes including preeclampsia, cesarean delivery, stillbirth, macrosomia, large for gestational age, and neonatal hypoglycemia, said doctors

A recent study conducted by doctors at the Hirabai Cowasji Jehangir Medical Research Institute (HCJMR) has found that high pregnancy weight gain increases the risk of early Gestational Diabetes Mellitus (GDM) among women.

Women with a history of GDM are at elevated risk of GDM in future pregnancies and the development of type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease in later life, says doctor. (REPRESENTATIVE PHOTO)
Women with a history of GDM are at elevated risk of GDM in future pregnancies and the development of type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease in later life, says doctor. (REPRESENTATIVE PHOTO)

Gestational Diabetes Mellitus (GDM) is a type of diabetes that develops in pregnancy when blood sugar levels get too high. It usually appears during the middle of pregnancy, between 24 and 28 weeks.

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GDM is associated with an increased risk of adverse maternal and foetal outcomes including preeclampsia, cesarean delivery, stillbirth, macrosomia, large for gestational age, and neonatal hypoglycemia, said doctors.

Also, the risk of early GDM was lower among taller women compared to shorter ones when pregnancy weight, maternal age, and parity remained the same, said the doctors.

The study was conducted by a team of HCJMR, which includes— Swapna Deshpande, Dr Tarja I. Kinnunen, Dr Anuradha Khadilkar, Dr Jyothi Unni, Dr Vandana Khanijo, Dr Namrata Donga and Dr Sangita Kulathinal.

The two years long study was conducted on 600 expecting mothers from private tertiary hospitals and Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) run Rajiv Gandhi Hospital and Sonawane Hospital.

The findings of the study have been recently (last month) published in BMC Journal.

Dr Anuradha Khadilkar, director of HCJMR, said, the impact of pregnancy weight and the rate of gestational weight gain together on the risk of early GDM in less than 24 weeks of pregnancy has not been studied in the Indian context.

“The pregnancy weight plays a major role in the risk of development of early GDM. There is a need for healthcare workers to focus on pregnancy weight which is a key risk factor for GDM. Also, women with a history of GDM are at elevated risk of GDM in future pregnancies and the development of type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease in later life,” she said.

During the study clinical data of expecting mothers attending antenatal care clinics was collected within 12 weeks of gestation and between 19–24 weeks of gestation period. Interviews and home visits were done to collect information and understand the lifestyle of the pregnant women.

Out of these 600 pregnant women, Seven (1.2%) women were underweight, 142 (23.8%) were in the normal weight category, 339 (56.4%) were overweight and 112 (18.6%) were obese.

As per the study, ‘89 women (14.8%) were diagnosed with early GDM by 24 weeks. Out of which 59 (9.8%) were diagnosed before 12 weeks and 30 of 541 (5.5%) women were diagnosed between 19-24 weeks.

Two-thirds (66%) of early GDM were diagnosed before 12 weeks of gestation. When comparing the risk of early GDM between the BMI categories, 64 (18.9%) of the overweight women and 21 (18.8%) of the obese women were diagnosed with early GDM.

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