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01.12.2014 | Research article | Ausgabe 1/2014 Open Access

BMC Cardiovascular Disorders 1/2014

Association of Gestational Diabetes Mellitus (GDM) with subclinical atherosclerosis: a systemic review and meta-analysis

BMC Cardiovascular Disorders > Ausgabe 1/2014
Jing-Wei Li, Si-Yi He, Peng Liu, Lin Luo, Liang Zhao, Ying-Bin Xiao
Wichtige Hinweise

Electronic supplementary material

The online version of this article (doi:10.​1186/​1471-2261-14-132) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.

Competing interests

The authors declare that they have no competing interests.

Authors’ contributions

JL: Literature search, data extraction and manuscript writing; SH: Literature search and data extraction; PL: Statistical analysis; LL: Statistical analysis; LZ: Manuscript revision and experimental design. YBX is responsible for the overall content as the guarantor. All authors have read and approved the final manuscript.



Gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) is associated with an elevated risk of adverse health outcomes such as type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular diseases. Carotid intima-media thickness (cIMT) is increasingly used as a noninvasive marker for subclinical atherosclerosis. Whether there is a direct correlation between GDM and elevated cIMT is still controversial.


PubMed, Embase and reference lists of relevant papers were reviewed. Studies assessing the relationship between GDM and cIMT were included. Weighted Mean Difference (WMD) of cIMT was calculated using random-effect models.


Fifteen studies with a total of 2247 subjects were included in our analysis, giving a pooled WMD of 0.05 (95% confidence interval [CI] 0.03 –0.07). Furthermore, meta regression and subgroup analysis found that the association between GDM and larger cIMT already existed during pregnancy, and this relation was stronger in obese GDM patients.


GDM in and after pregnancy is associated with subclinical atherosclerosis. Weight control may be helpful to prevent cardiovascular diseases for GDM patients.
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