Fasting glucose in early pregnancy detects diabetes risk
As in the earlier study, women were ranked into groups according to their fasting glucose levels, ranging from less than 4.1 mmol/L up to 5.8 mmol/L. With increasing levels the frequency of diabetes during pregnancy increased from 1.0% in the lowest group to 11.7% in the highest. The frequency of ‘large for dates’ babies and of caesarean section also increased with fasting glucose levels. There was only a slight increase in risk of developing diabetes once obesity before pregnancy was taken into account, but an increased risk of having a large baby remained even after excluding women who developed diabetes.
It seems that screening for diabetes earlier than the last third of pregnancy, which is currently the custom, might be beneficial. They suggest that a large trial is needed to confirm their findings and to evaluate whether diet and exercise might reduce diabetes in those at highest risk.