The rates of gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) increased from 2016 to 2020, according to the July 19 issue of the National Vital Statistics Reports, a publication from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Elizabeth C.W. Gregory, M.P.H., and Danielle M. Ely, Ph.D., from the National Center for Health Statistics in Hyattsville, Maryland, present data on trends in GDM among women giving birth in the United States from 2016 through 2020; data were obtained from birth certificates.
The researchers found that the overall rate of GDM was 7.8 per 100 births among women giving birth in 2020, which represented a 30 percent increase from 2016. From 2016 to 2020, there were increases observed, with a larger annual percent change from 2019 to 2020 versus 2016 to 2019 (13 versus 5 percent) overall and for almost every characteristic examined. The rate of GDM varied by maternal race and Hispanic origin in 2020; the highest and lowest rates were seen for non-Hispanic Asian and non-Hispanic Black women (14.9 and 6.5 percent, respectively). With increasing maternal age, prepregnancy body mass index, and plurality, the GDM rate increased. The GDM rate varied by state from a low of 4.7 to a high of 12.6 percent in Mississippi and Alaska, respectively, in 2020.
“The larger than average increase in GDM during 2019 to 2020 may be related, in part, to changes observed in the general and at-risk populations (including pregnant women), such as decreased physical activity, weight gain, and other lifestyle factors that are known to impact GDM,” the authors write.