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Diabetologia. 2012 Nov;55(11):3114-27. doi: 10.1007/s00125-012-2689-8. Epub 2012 Sep 5.

The diabetic pregnancy and offspring blood pressure in childhood: a systematic review and meta-analysis.

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Section of Neonatal Medicine, Department of Medicine, Imperial College London, Chelsea and Westminster Campus, 369 Fulham Road, London SW10 9NH, UK.



Offspring of diabetic mothers have increased risk of the metabolic syndrome in adulthood. Studies examining BP in offspring of diabetic mothers have conflicting conclusions. We performed a systematic review and meta-analysis of studies reporting offspring BP in children born to diabetic mothers.


Citations were identified in PubMed. Authors were contacted for additional data. Systolic and diastolic BP in offspring of diabetic mothers and controls were compared. Subgroup analysis of type of maternal diabetes and offspring sex were performed. Fixed-effects models were used, and random-effects models where significant heterogeneity was present. Meta-regression was used to test the relationship between offspring systolic BP and prepregnancy BMI.


Fifteen studies were included in the review and 13 in the meta-analysis. Systolic BP was higher in offspring of diabetic mothers (mean difference 1.88 mmHg [95% CI 0.47, 3.28]; p = 0.009). Offspring of mothers with gestational diabetes had similar diastolic BP to controls, but higher systolic BP (1.39 mmHg [95% CI 0.00, 2.77]; p = 0.05); results for type 1 diabetes were inconclusive and there were no separate data available on offspring of type 2 diabetic mothers. Male offspring of diabetic mothers had higher systolic BP (2.01 mmHg [95% CI 0.93, 3.10]; p = 0.0003) and diastolic BP (1.12 mmHg [95% CI 0.36, 1.88]; p = 0.004) than controls; in female offspring there was no difference (systolic: 0.54 mmHg [95% CI -1.83, 2.90], p = 0.66; diastolic: 0.51 mmHg [95% CI -1.07, 2.09], p = 0.52). The correlation between offspring systolic BP and maternal prepregnancy BMI was not significant (p = 0.37).


Offspring of diabetic mothers have higher systolic BP than controls. Differences related to sex and type of maternal diabetes require further investigation.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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