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Dr Rebecca Dennison is SPCR launching fellow in the Primary Care Unit at the University of Cambridge.

News piece first published by the Primary Care Unit.

A third of women who get diabetes while pregnant – a common condition called gestational diabetes mellitus or GDM – will go on to develop type 2 diabetes within 15 years of their pregnancy. The figures, in new research from the University of Cambridge, show that the risk of developing type 2 diabetes after a pregnancy with GDM is much more variable than previously thought and persists into later life.

Gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) is one of the most common conditions of pregnancy, affecting up to 13% of pregnancies across the world. It is becoming more common, because of increasing levels of obesity, sedentary lifestyles and unhealthy diets. Although most women no longer have diabetes after they have given birth, GDM is known to be associated with future risk of developing type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM).

This new study is the largest and most comprehensive systematic review of all the available data from studies published up to October 2019. It provides the best available estimate of the risk of T2DM after having GDM and explores reasons for the variation in risk.

Read the full news article: https://www.phpc.cam.ac.uk/pcu/33-of-women-who-have-gestational-diabetes-will-develop-type-2-diabetes-within-15-years-new-research-shows/ 

Read the paper

R Dennison, E Chen, ME Green, C Legard, D Kotecha, G Farmer, S Sharp, RJ Ward, JA Usher-Smith, SJ Griffin, The absolute and relative risk of type 2 diabetes after gestational diabetes: A systematic review and meta-analysis of 129 studies, in Diabetes Research and Clinical Practice, 15 December 2020. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.diabres.2020.108625

Read more about Dr Dennison’s research 

Reducing health risks for mothers who develop diabetes during pregnancy: new study explores women’s experiences of post-partum screening

Strategies to promote healthier lifestyles for women who have had gestational diabetes need to consider the distinct needs and experiences of new mothers, say researchers