Boys born to moms with GDM at risk of neurodevelopmental delays

10 Oct 2022
Boys born to moms with GDM at risk of neurodevelopmental delays

Neurodevelopment appears to be significantly delayed at up to 4 years of age in boys who are born to mothers with gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM), reports a recent study.

Drawing from the National Birth Cohort in the Japan Environment and Children’s Study, the researchers looked at 81,705 foetal records, in which the Ages and Stages Questionnaire (ASQ3) was used to assess neurodevelopment. Criteria from the Association of Diabetes and Pregnancy Study Groups were used to determine GDM.

At delivery, mothers had a mean age of 31.3 years, and 2.6 percent (n=2,162) were deemed to have GDM. Among infants, 51 percent were boys, 17 percent were delivered through a caesarean section, and the average gestational age was 39.5 weeks.

According to ASQ3 cut-offs, 3.4 percent had developmental delays in communication skills at 4 years of age, 4.3 percent in gross motor skills, 5.1 percent in fine motor skills, 2.7 percent in problem solving, and 4.2 percent in personal and social skills.

Generalized estimating equations showed that kids born to mothers with GDM were nearly 25 percent more likely to have problem solving delays at 4 years of age (odds ratio [OR], 1.24, 95 percent confidence interval [CI], 1.12–1.36). The same was true for fine motor (OR, 1.15, 95 percent CI, 1.03–1.27) and personal and social (OR, 1.18, 95 percent CI, 1.04–1.33) skills.

Stratified analyses showed that such effects were more pronounced in boys. Maternal GDM did not significantly affect fine motor and personal and social skills in girls.

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