Future Cardiac Event Risk Higher in Women With Gestational Diabetes

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The risk for cardiac events is higher for women with gestational diabetes.
The risk for cardiac events is higher for women with gestational diabetes.

HealthDay News -- The risk of cardiovascular outcomes is elevated for women with gestational diabetes, even in the absence of subsequent type 2 diabetes, according to a study published in Diabetes Care.

Ravi Retnakaran, MD, from Mount Sinai University in Toronto, and Baiju R. Shah, MD, PhD, from the University of Toronto, examined the role of type 2 diabetes in determining vascular outcomes in women with previous gestational diabetes. Women with a live-birth pregnancy between April 1994 and March 2014 were stratified into four groups: women with gestational diabetes in whom type 2 diabetes developed (15,585 women); women with gestational diabetes in whom type 2 diabetes did not develop (41,299 women); women without gestational diabetes in whom type 2 diabetes developed (49,397 women); and women with neither gestational diabetes nor type 2 diabetes (1,408,798 women). 

Participants were followed for a median of 10.0 years.

The researchers found that among women with gestational diabetes, those in whom type 2 diabetes developed had elevated risks of vitrectomy/photocoagulation, renal dialysis, and hospitalization for foot infection (hazard ratios: 4.49, 7.52, and 4.32, respectively; all P <.0001). Although absolute event rates were very low, the risks of cardiovascular disease and coronary artery disease were increased for both women with gestational diabetes in whom type 2 diabetes developed and in those in whom type 2 diabetes did not develop.

"Future macrovascular risk is an inherent feature of gestational diabetes, irrespective of subsequent type 2 diabetes," the researchers wrote.

Reference

  1. Retnakaran R, Shah BR. Role of type 2 diabetes in determining retinal, renal, and cardiovascular outcomes in women with previous gestational diabetes mellitus. Diabetes Care. 2016 Nov 7. doi:10.2337/dc16-1400 [Epub ahead of print].
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