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Association between gestational diabetes mellitus and depression in parents: a retrospective cohort study

Authors Pace R, Rahme E, Da Costa D, Dasgupta K

Received 17 August 2018

Accepted for publication 19 October 2018

Published 3 December 2018 Volume 2018:10 Pages 1827—1838


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Professor Henrik Toft Sørensen

Romina Pace,1 Elham Rahme,1,2 Deborah Da Costa,1,2 Kaberi Dasgupta1,2

1Centre for Outcomes Research and Evaluation, Research Institute of the McGill University Health Centre, Montreal, QC, Canada; 2Department of Medicine, McGill University Health Center, Montreal, QC, Canada

Purpose: The aim of this study was to examine the association between gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) and depression incidence in mothers and fathers during prenatal and postnatal periods.
Patients and methods: Matched pairs (GDM vs no GDM) of randomly selected mothers with singleton live births (matched by age group, delivery year, and health region) and their partners (Quebec, Canada; cohort inception 1990–2007) were assessed for a composite outcome of depression/self-harm/suicide using a health administrative database. We examined the association of GDM and the composite outcome in the following three nonoverlapping periods: 1) 24 weeks gestation up to delivery; 2) delivery up to 1 year postpartum; and 3) 1 year postpartum to study end (March 31, 2012). We used stratified Cox proportional regression hazards models, with three models in mothers and three models in fathers, corresponding to each of the time periods of interest.
Results: In the 58,400 mothers, women with GDM had a nearly twofold greater risk (adjusted HR: 1.82, 95% CI 1.28, 2.59) of being diagnosed with depression compared to those without GDM during the prenatal period. In the first year postpartum, there was no conclusive difference observed between the two groups of mothers (adjusted HR: 1.05, 95% CI 0.84, 1.30). Beyond the first year postpartum, there was an 8% increased risk (adjusted HR: 1.08, 95% CI 1.03, 1.14) of depression in women with a history GDM compared to those without. A total of 63,384 fathers were included in our analyses, and no association between GDM in one’s partner and depression was found during any of the three time periods evaluated.
Conclusion: GDM is associated with an increased risk of depression in women particularly during pregnancy highlighting the need to screen for depression and provide supportive interventions during this period.

Keywords: depression, self-harm, suicide, administrative health data, pregnancy, postpartum

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