Lowe WL Jr, Scholtens DM, Lowe LP, Kuang A, Nodzenski M, Talbot O, Catalano PM, Linder B, Brickman WJ, Clayton P, Deerochanawong C, Hamilton J, Josefson JL, Lashley M, Lawrence JM, Lebenthal Y, Ma R, Maresh M, McCance D, Tam WH, Sacks DA, Dyer AR, Metzger BE (2018) JAMA. 2018 Sep;320(10): 1005-1016. doi: 10.1001/jama.2018.11628.
The sequelae of gestational diabetes (GD) by contemporary criteria that diagnose approximately twice as many women as previously used criteria are unclear.
To examine associations of GD with maternal glucose metabolism and childhood adiposity 10 to 14 years' postpartum.
The Hyperglycemia and Adverse Pregnancy Outcome (HAPO) Study established associations of glucose levels during pregnancy with perinatal outcomes and the follow-up study evaluated the long-term outcomes (4697 mothers and 4832 children; study visits occurred between February 13, 2013, and December 13, 2016).
Gestational diabetes was defined post hoc using criteria from the International Association of Diabetes and Pregnancy Study Groups consisting of 1 or more of the following 75-g oral glucose tolerance test results (fasting plasma glucose ≥92 mg/dL; 1-hour plasma glucose level ≥180 mg/dL; 2-hour plasma glucose level ≥153 mg/dL).
Primary maternal outcome: a disorder of glucose metabolism (composite of type 2 diabetes or prediabetes). Primary outcome for children: being overweight or obese; secondary outcomes: obesity, body fat percentage, waist circumference, and sum of skinfolds (>85th percentile for latter 3 outcomes).
The analytic cohort included 4697 mothers (mean [SD] age, 41.7 [5.7] years) and 4832 children (mean [SD] age, 11.4 [1.2] years; 51.0% male). The median duration of follow-up was 11.4 years. The criteria for GD were met by 14.3% (672/4697) of mothers overall and by 14.1% (683/4832) of mothers of participating children. Among mothers with GD, 52.2% (346/663) developed a disorder of glucose metabolism vs 20.1% (791/3946) of mothers without GD (odds ratio [OR], 3.44 [95% CI, 2.85 to 4.14]; risk difference [RD], 25.7% [95% CI, 21.7% to 29.7%]). Among children of mothers with GD, 39.5% (269/681) were overweight or obese and 19.1% (130/681) were obese vs 28.6% (1172/4094) and 9.9% (405/4094), respectively, for children of mothers without GD. Adjusted for maternal body mass index during pregnancy, the OR was 1.21 (95% CI, 1.00 to 1.46) for children who were overweight or obese and the RD was 3.7% (95% CI, -0.16% to 7.5%); the OR was 1.58 (95% CI, 1.24 to 2.01) for children who were obese and the RD was 5.0% (95% CI, 2.0% to 8.0%); the OR was 1.35 (95% CI, 1.08 to 1.68) for body fat percentage and the RD was 4.2% (95% CI, 0.9% to 7.4%); the OR was 1.34 (95% CI, 1.08 to 1.67) for waist circumference and the RD was 4.1% (95% CI, 0.8% to 7.3%); and the OR was 1.57 (95% CI, 1.27 to 1.95) for sum of skinfolds and the RD was 6.5% (95% CI, 3.1% to 9.9%).
Among women with GD identified by contemporary criteria compared with those without it, GD was significantly associated with a higher maternal risk for a disorder of glucose metabolism during long-term follow-up after pregnancy. Among children of mothers with GD vs those without it, the difference in childhood overweight or obesity defined by body mass index cutoffs was not statistically significant; however, additional measures of childhood adiposity may be relevant in interpreting the study findings.