Men More Likely To Develop Diabetes If Spouse Has Gestational Diabetes

Dr. Kaberi Dasgupta MD, MSc, FRCPC Associate Professor, Department of Medicine Divisions of Internal Medicine, Clinical Epidemiology, and Endocrinology and Metabolism Royal Victoria Hospital Quebec, Canada

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:
Dr. Kaberi Dasgupta MD, MSc, FRCPC
Associate Professor, Department of Medicine
Divisions of Internal Medicine, Clinical Epidemiology, and Endocrinology and Metabolism
Royal Victoria Hospital
Quebec, Canada

 

Medical Research: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Dr. Dasgupta: We know that health behaviours can contribute to developing gestational diabetes and type 2 diabetes (e.g., eating out frequently, lack of fruits and vegetables, not walking enough, spending most of the day sitting). We also know that genetic factors are important. Sometimes we focus more on the genetic factors than on health behaviours. By showing that spouses share diabetes risk, we highlight the importance that behaviour and environment play as spouses are not generally related biologically. In a previous meta-analysis, we showed that spouses were concordant for diabetes (if one had it, there was a 24% relative risk increase that the other did too.)

In the study Gestational Diabetes Mellitus in Mothers as a Diabetes Predictor in Fathers: A Retrospective Cohort Analysis, we took it further and compared men whose partners had gestational diabetes and men whose partners did not. Over a 13 year period of follow-up, the men whose partners had gestational diabetes were 33% more likely to develop diabetes.

Medical Research: What should clinicians and patients take away from your report?

Dr. Dasgupta: We already knew that gestational diabetes predicts diabetes in mothers. We now know that gestational diabetes predicts diabetes in fathers. When a woman is diagnosed with gestational diabetes, this should be understood as an issue for the health of the whole family, a signal that everyone in the household should work together to achieve the health behaviours that have been shown to reduce diabetes risk.

Medical Research: What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?

Dr. Dasgupta: We need to perform trials and develop programs that involve both mothers and fathers in health behaviour interventions and demonstrate that this reduces their risk of cardiometabolic complications. Our group and others are involved in such work. Please see https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT02343354.

Citation:
Kaberi Dasgupta, Nancy Ross, Sara Meltzer, Deborah Da Costa, Meranda Nakhla, Youssef Habel, Elham Rahme. Gestational Diabetes Mellitus in Mothers as a Diabetes Predictor in Fathers: A Retrospective Cohort Analysis. Diabetes Care, 2015; dc150855 DOI: 2337/dc15-0855

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Dr. Kaberi Dasgupta MD (2015). Men More Likely To Develop Diabetes If Spouse Has Gestational Diabetes