Maternal Weight Ups Infant Size More Than Glucose Intolerance

Excess weight gain during pregnancy, pre-pregnancy BMI are better predictors of large-for-gestational-age

WEDNESDAY, May 23 (HealthDay News) -- For women without gestational diabetes, excess maternal weight gain during pregnancy and body mass index (BMI) before pregnancy are greater predictors of large-for-gestational-age infants than mild glucose intolerance and lipid levels, according to a study published online May 22 in CMAJ, the journal of the Canadian Medical Association.

To assess the effects of maternal obesity, glycemia, lipids, adipokines, and inflammation on infant birth weight, Ravi Retnakaran, M.D., of Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City, and colleagues conducted a study involving 472 pregnant women who completed an oral glucose tolerance test but did not have gestational diabetes. One hundred four women had gestational impaired glucose tolerance.

The researchers found that 68 infants were large for their gestational age. Logistic regression analysis identified significant metabolic predictors of having a large-for-gestational-age infant, including pre-pregnancy BMI (odds ratio [OR], 1.16 per 1 kg/m² increase); gestational weight gain up to the time of the oral glucose tolerance test (OR, 1.12 per 1 kg increase); and leptin level (OR, 0.50 per one standard deviation change). Neither impaired glucose tolerance nor any of the lipid measures were independent predictors of large-for-gestational-age infants.

"These data suggest that maternal weight and its associated circulating factors have a greater impact on infant birth weight than do mild glucose intolerance and lipid levels in women without gestational diabetes," the authors write.

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