Prepregnancy Diabetes Tied to Congenital Anomalies

THURSDAY, Oct. 29, 2020 — Prepregnancy diabetes is associated with several subtypes of congenital anomalies of the newborn, according to a study published online Oct. 21 in Diabetes Care.

Yuxiao Wu, from the University of Iowa in Iowa City, and colleagues examined the association between maternal prepregnancy diabetes, gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM), and 12 subtypes of congenital anomalies of the newborn. The analysis included 29,211,974 live births (maternal age, 18 to 49 years old) identified in the U.S. National Vital Statistics System (from 2011 to 2018).

The researchers identified 90,061 infants who had congenital anomalies identified at birth. For prepregnancy diabetes, the adjusted risk ratio for congenital anomalies at birth was 2.44; for gestational diabetes, the adjusted risk ratio was 1.28. Findings were consistent across subgroups by maternal age, race/ethnicity, prepregnancy obesity status, and infant sex. Increased risk was observed for most subtypes of congenital anomalies with maternal prepregnancy diabetes or GDM. Specifically, for cyanotic congenital heart disease, the adjusted risk ratio was 4.61 with prepregnancy diabetes and 1.50 with GDM. Additionally, for hypospadias, the adjusted risk ratio was 1.88 with prepregnancy diabetes and 1.29 with GDM.

“These findings suggest potential benefits of preconception counseling in women with preexisting diabetes or at risk for GDM for the prevention of congenital anomalies,” the authors write.

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