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Homocysteine Levels Predicts Future Diabetes After Gestational Diabetes

Posted: Monday, November 28, 2005

Measurement of homocysteine at six week's postpartum "would be helpful" to identify women with a previous history of pregnancy-induced diabetes at high risk for developing diabetes, study investigators conclude.

Diabetes that develops during pregnancy normally clears up after delivery. Nowadays, however, full-blown diabetes often develops in women who suffered with pregnancy-induced diabetes.

Homocysteine, an amino acid, has been tied to heart disease and stroke but its relationships to and role in the onset of diabetes is unclear.

To investigate, Dr. Nam H. Cho from Ajou University School of Medicine in Suwon, Korea and colleagues studied 170 women with a history of pregnancy-induced diabetes who had normal glucose tolerance or impaired glucose tolerance (a prediabetic condition) at baseline exams conducted at six weeks postpartum.

Over the next 4 years, 18 women (10.6 percent) became diabetic. Of these, nine had normal glucose tolerance and nine had impaired glucose tolerance at baseline.

Cho's team found that higher postpartum homocysteine levels were associated with the onset of diabetes, regardless of age, body weight, and family history of diabetes.

The results hint that early postpartum "hyperhomocysteinemia" in mother who had pregnancy-induced diabetes ups the risk of diabetes later on, the authors conclude.

Source:  Diabetes In Control:

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