HealthDay News — Women with gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) face a substantially higher risk of later diabetes, according to a study published online in Diabetes Care.

Katharine J. McCarthy, PhD, MPH, from the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York City, and colleagues estimated racial and ethnic differences in the influence of GDM on diabetes risk and glycemic control. Analysis included a final birth cohort of 336,276 women (2009 to 2017).

The researchers found that the cumulative incidence for diabetes was 11.8% for women with GDM and 0.6% among women without GDM. Diabetes risk with GDM was more than 11-fold higher overall (adjusted hazard ratio, 11.5), with slight differences seen by race and ethnicity. Further, GDM was associated with a lower likelihood of glycemic control (adjusted hazard ratio, 0.85), with highest risk among Black women (adjusted hazard ratio, 0.77) and Hispanic women (adjusted hazard ratio, 0.84).

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“Our findings highlight the importance of regular diabetes screening following a gestational diabetes, particularly in the first 12 months following delivery — which was marked by the highest incidence of diabetes and least likelihood of glycemic control — in order to facilitate early detection and appropriate diabetes management,” McCarthy said in a statement. “In addition to care coordination between obstetric and primary care providers, provider education on the importance of obstetric history-taking is essential in facilitating diabetes awareness and early glycemic control.”

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