Gestational diabetes in Korea: incidence and risk factors of diabetes in women with previous gestational diabetes

Diabetes Metab J. 2011 Feb;35(1):1-7. doi: 10.4093/dmj.2011.35.1.1. Epub 2011 Feb 28.


Korean women with a history of gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) have a 3.5 times greater risk of developing postpartum diabetes than the general population. The incidence of type 2 diabetes mellitus in early postpartum is reported as 10-15% in Korean women. A prospective follow-up study on Korean women with GDM showed that approximately 40% of women with previous GDM were expected to develop diabetes within 5 years postpartum. Independent risk factors for the development of diabetes in Korean women with previous GDM are pre-pregnancy body weight, gestational age at diagnosis, antepartum hyperglycemia on oral glucose tolerance test, low insulin response to oral glucose load, and family history of diabetes. Women with postpartum diabetes have greater body mass indexes, body weight, and waist circumferences than women with normal glucose tolerance. Multiple logistic regression analysis has revealed that waist circumference is the strongest obesity index along with systolic blood pressure and that triglyceride levels are a major independent risk factor for developing diabetes. These results in Korean women with previous GDM underline the importance of postpartum testing in Korean women diagnosed with GDM, and demonstrate that impaired B-cell function, obesity, and especially visceral obesity, are associated with the development of diabetes.

Keywords: Diabetes, gestational; Incidence; Postpartum diabetes; Risk factors.