Hyperglycemia in pregnancy and developmental outcomes in children at 18-60 months of age: The PANDORA Wave 1 study

Angela Titmuss, Anita D'Aprano, Federica Barzi, Alex D.H. Brown, Anna Wood, Christine Connors, Jacqueline A. Boyle, Elizabeth Moore, Kerin O'Dea, Jeremy Oats, H. David McIntyre, Paul Zimmet, Jonathan E. Shaw, Maria E. Craig, Louise J. Maple-Brown

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study aimed to explore the association between hyperglycemia in pregnancy (type 2 diabetes (T2D) and gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM)) and child developmental risk in Europid and Aboriginal women. PANDORA is a longitudinal birth cohort recruited from a hyperglycemia in pregnancy register, and from normoglycemic women in antenatal clinics. The Wave 1 substudy included 308 children who completed developmental and behavioral screening between age 18 and 60 months. Developmental risk was assessed using the Ages and Stages Questionnaire (ASQ) or equivalent modified ASQ for use with Aboriginal children. Emotional and behavioral risk was assessed using the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire. Multivariable logistic regression was used to assess the association between developmental scores and explanatory variables, including maternal T2D in pregnancy or GDM. After adjustment for ethnicity, maternal and child variables, and socioeconomic measures, maternal hyperglycemia was associated with increased developmental "concern"(defined as score ≥1 SD below mean) in the fine motor (T2D odds ratio (OR) 5.30, 95% CI 1.77-15.80; GDM OR 3.96, 95% CI 1.55-10.11) and problem-solving (T2D OR 2.71, 95% CI 1.05-6.98; GDM OR 2.54, 95% CI 1.17-5.54) domains, as well as increased "risk"(score ≥2 SD below mean) in at least one domain (T2D OR 5.33, 95% CI 1.85-15.39; GDM OR 4.86, 95% CI 1.95-12.10). Higher maternal education was associated with reduced concern in the problem-solving domain (OR 0.27, 95% CI 0.11-0.69) after adjustment for maternal hyperglycemia. Maternal hyperglycemia is associated with increased developmental concern and may be a potential target for intervention so as to optimize developmental trajectories.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)695-705
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Developmental Origins of Health and Disease
Issue number6
Early online date4 Apr 2022
Publication statusPublished - 4 Dec 2022


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