HealthDay News — The type of contraceptives prescribed before pregnancy may influence the risk of gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM), according to researchers.

“Over the years, concerns have been raised about the possible association between hormonal contraceptives and various chronic diseases, including cardiovascular disease, breast cancer, and metabolic dysfunction,” explained Brittney A. Kramer, MPH, of the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services in Jefferson City, and colleagues in Preventing Chronic Disease. “However, little is known about hormonal contraceptive use and its role in the development of gestational diabetes (GDM).”

To examine the association between contraceptive method used before pregnancy and maternal risk for GDM, the investigators analyzed data from 2,741 women who completed the 2007 and 2008 Missouri Pregnancy Risk Assessment Monitoring System.

Continue Reading

Among those surveyed, 17.9% had used hormonal contraceptive methods and 8.3% were diagnosed with GDM. Females who used hormonal methods of contraception were more likely to be diagnosed with GDM (adjusted odds ratio, 1.43; 95% CI: 1.32-1.55) compared with those who used no contraception.

Females who had used barrier methods of contraception were less likely to be diagnosed with GDM (aOR, 0.79; 95% CI: 0.72-0.86) compared with those who had used no contraception.

“Although researchers have not established a causal relationship between hormonal contraception use and GDM, results of our study suggest there may be an underlying correlating mechanism. More research is needed to assess hormonal contraception use as a potential risk factor for GDM,” wrote the inspectors.


  1. Kramer B et al. Preventing Chronic Disease. 2014; doi: