Master's Project Title:

A Review on the Relationship Between Gestational Diabetes Mellitus and Later Childhood Obesity

MCH Student:

Kate Erickson

Date of Defense:

September 2008


Objectives: Gestational Diabetes Mellitus is prevalent in 7% of pregnant women.  It is important to understand what risks are placed on the offspring who are exposed to Gestational Diabetes.

Methods:  This paper reviewed eight journal articles from North American and Western Europe since 1998 and earlier.  Reviewed articles included children ages 5-18 years of age to help determine what conclusions can be made about the link between Gestational Diabetes and later childhood obesity.

Results:  This review indicates that the relationship is inconclusive.  The studies were inconsistent in how they defined childhood obesity and how they gathered their participants.  This may explain why there is no general agreement on the relationship with obesity.

Conclusions:  More studies are needed that use larger sample sizes and utilize more diverse populations, and that have more clear definitions of how GDM was identified in patients.