17% of Women with Previous Gestational Diabetes Develop Diabetes Later On in Life

A study from the Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology at Rigshospitalet, Denmark, has concluded that women with previous gestational diabetes mellitus have a considerably increased risk of developing diabetes later on in life. The report was published in the September 1992 issue of Am J Obstet Gynecol.

For the study, 241 women with previous dietary-treated gestational diabetes, a pregnancy-linked diabetic condition, were investigated. 17.4% of the women investigated developed diabetes (3.7% developed type I diabetes and 13.7% developed type 2). A control group of 57 women without previous gestational diabetes showed no later development of diabetes.

Factors for predicting the development of diabetes were the fasting glucose level at diagnosis, premature delivery, and an oral glucose test result that showed diabetes 2 months after childbirth. The researchers note that follow-up studies are important, especially in those women with previous gestational diabetes in whom the identified predictive factors are present.

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