A new study has found the pregnant women suffering from depression in their first six months of pregnancy have a higher risk of getting gestational diabetes. Researchers at the National Institute of Health, USA, have found a two-way link between depression and gestational diabetes.
In addition, the reverse was also found to be true, where women with gestational diabetes happened to be at a higher risk of postpartum depression. Gestational diabetes is a form of diabetes that occurs only during pregnancy, and poses serious health risks to the mother and baby.
Though it is said that obesity ups the risk for gestational diabetes, this study found that non-obese women with depression were at a greater risk for gestational diabetes than obese women with depression. Under the study, the pregnancy records of 2334 non-obese pregnant women and 468 obese pregnant women were analysed by the researchers, who tracked the progress of their pregnancies to understand the fetal growth. The women answered questionnaires on depression between 16th and 22nd week of pregnancy, and again at six weeks after giving birth.
Women who had highest scores for depression in the first and second trimesters, which was about 17% had nearly triple the risk for gestational diabetes, compared to women who had lower depression scores.
“Our results suggest it would be a good idea for clinicians to pay particular attention to women with high depression scores when evaluating the risk of gestational diabetes,” said the study’s senior author, Cuilin Zhang, M.D., Ph.D, in the Division of Intramural Population Health Research at National Institute of Child Health and Human Development.