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CGM improves birth outcomes for mothers with diabetes

As published in The Lancet, a report has shown that 24-hour glucose monitoring during pregnancy has been shown to improve birth outcomes for women with Type 1 diabetes and their babies. The report’s authors say that continuous glucose monitoring should be offered to all pregnant women with Type 1 diabetes to reduce risk of complications for newborn babies.

With half of babies born to women with Type 1 diabetes facing complications as a result of being exposed to maternal high blood sugar levels, the study use of a CGM device helped reduce blood sugar levels by a small amount but compared to traditional monitoring, women who used the device spent more time in the normal range for blood sugar levels and less time with high blood sugar levels although the number of severe hypoglycaemic episodes and the time spent hypoglycaemic was comparable in the two groups.

Importantly, birth outcomes improved for those using CGM. “For a long time there has been limited progress in improving birth outcomes for women with Type 1 diabetes, so we’re pleased that our study offers a new option to help pregnant women with diabetes and their children,” says author Dr Denice Feig, University of Toronto and Sinai Health System, Canada. Professor Helen Murphy, University of East Anglia, UK, adds, “Although CGM is expensive, the extra costs are likely be offset by the shorter hospital stays for babies and the reduction in neonatal intensive care unit admissions. We only need to treat six pregnant women with continuous glucose monitoring to prevent one baby weighing more than average at birth and one neonatal intensive care unit admission.”

The study was funded by the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, Canadian Clinical Trials Network, and National Institute for Health Research (USA).

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