HealthDay News — Intrauterine exposure to maternal gestational diabetes is associated with an increased cardiovascular disease risk and risk factors in offspring up to age 35 years, according to a study published online in CMAJ, the journal of the Canadian Medical Association.

Laetitia Guillemette, PhD, from the Children’s Hospital Research Institute of Manitoba in Winnipeg, Canada, and colleagues conducted a cohort study of 293,546 offspring born between 1979 and 2005 and followed until March 2015 to examine the potential association between exposure to maternal diabetes and cardiovascular disease events.

The researchers found that during 3,628,576 person-years of follow-up, 0.9% of the offspring experienced a cardiovascular disease end point and 4.3% experienced a cardiovascular disease risk factor. The risk for cardiovascular disease end points was significantly increased in offspring exposed to gestational diabetes after propensity score matching (adjusted hazard ratio, 1.42; 95% confidence interval, 1.12 to 1.79); no significantly increased risk was seen with exposure to type 2 diabetes (adjusted hazard ratio, 1.40; 95% confidence interval, 0.98 to 2.01). For cardiovascular disease risk factors, a similar association was observed (gestational diabetes: adjusted hazard ratio, 1.92; 95% confidence interval, 1.75 to 2.11; type 2 diabetes: adjusted hazard ratio, 3.40; 95% confidence interval, 3.00 to 3.85).

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“Screening children with in utero exposure to diabetes for cardiovascular disease risk factors might help to evaluate the future burden related to cardiovascular disease in the population,” the authors write.

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