(HealthDay News) — Among women with gestational diabetes, lower education level and higher BMI at diagnosis are associated with reduced likelihood of postpartum follow-up, according to research published in Clinical Diabetes.
Irène P. Mathieu, from the Vanderbilt University School of Medicine in Nashville, Tennessee, and colleagues conducted a retrospective chart review of 373 postpartum patients with gestational diabetes. The researchers examined disparities in postpartum follow-up, as well as characteristics associated with follow-up.
The researchers found that patients with less than a high school education were less likely to complete a follow-up visit than patients with an advanced degree (OR=4.36). Additionally, education level correlated inversely with fasting glucose at the time of diagnosis, a significant predictor of postpartum diabetes risk.
Patients who did not follow up had an average BMI of 31.7, compared with 29.9 for those who did follow up (P=.01). The researchers also noted that the likelihood of keeping a follow-up visit was lower for patients with a higher BMI (OR=0.69).
Among women with gestational diabetes, a prepregnancy BMI of greater than 30 was associated with an increased risk for postpartum diabetes.
“These findings could serve as a starting point for targeted intensive postpartum outreach,” the researchers wrote.