Gestational diabetes: risk of recurrence in subsequent pregnancies

Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2010 Nov;203(5):467.e1-6. doi: 10.1016/j.ajog.2010.05.032. Epub 2010 Jul 13.


Objective: We sought to examine the recurrence risk of gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) in a subsequent pregnancy and determine whether recurrence risk is modified by race/ethnicity.

Study design: We used the Kaiser Permanente Southern California longitudinally linked records (1991-2008) to study women with first 2 (n = 65,132) and first 3 (n = 13,096) singleton pregnancies. Adjusted odds ratios (ORs) were used to estimate the magnitude of recurrence.

Results: Risks of GDM in the second pregnancy among women with and without previous GDM were 41.3% and 4.2%, respectively (OR, 13.2; 95% confidence interval, 12.0-14.6). The recurrence risk of GDM in the third pregnancy was stronger when women had GDM in both prior pregnancies (OR, 25.9; 95% confidence interval, 17.4-38.4). Hispanics and Asian/Pacific Islanders have higher risks of recurrence.

Conclusion: A pregnancy complicated by GDM is at increased risk for subsequent GDM. The magnitude of risk increases with the number of prior episodes of GDM. These recurrence risks also showed heterogeneity by race-ethnicity.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • African Americans
  • Age Factors
  • Asian Americans
  • California
  • Diabetes, Gestational / etiology*
  • Female
  • Hispanic or Latino
  • Humans
  • Medical Records
  • Odds Ratio
  • Pregnancy
  • Recurrence
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Risk*
  • Whites