Screening for gestational diabetes at antenatal booking in a Malaysian university hospital: the role of risk factors and threshold value for the 50-g glucose challenge test

Peng Chiong Tan, Liza Ping Ling, Siti Zawiah Omar
Australian & New Zealand Journal of Obstetrics & Gynaecology 2007, 47 (3): 191-7

BACKGROUND: The best method of screening for gestational diabetes (GDM) remains unsettled. The 50-g glucose challenge test (GCT) is used in a two-stage screening process but its best threshold value can vary according to population.

AIMS: To evaluate the role of risk factors in conjunction with GCT and to determine an appropriate threshold for the one-hour venous plasma glucose with the GCT.

METHOD: In a prospective study, 1600 women at antenatal booking without a history of diabetes mellitus or GDM filled a form on risk factors before GCT. Women who had GCT >or= 7.2 mmol/L underwent the 75-g oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT). GDM was diagnosed according to WHO (1999) criteria.

RESULT: Thirty-five per cent had GCT >or= 7.2 mmol/L, 32.6% underwent OGTT and 34.5% of OGTT confirmed GDM. The GDM rate in our population was at least 11.4%. Examination of the receiver operator characteristic curve suggested that the best threshold value for the GCT in our population was >or= 7.6 mmol/L. Multivariable logistic regression demonstrated that only GCT >or= 7.6 mmol/L was an independent predictor for GDM (adjusted odds ratio 3.7: P < 0.001). After GCT, maternal age and anthropometry, OGTT during the third trimester, family history, obstetric history and glycosuria were not independent predictors of GDM.

CONCLUSIONS: Risk factors were not independent predictors of GDM in women with GCT >or= 7.2 mmol/L. GCT threshold value >or= 7.6 mmol is appropriate for the Malaysian population at high risk of GDM.

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