Gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) is an impaired glucose tolerance with onset or first recognition during pregnancy. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the clinical outcomes of a blood glucose monitoring protocol implemented by nurses and dietitians in a diabetes team to the previously established protocol of direct monitoring of GDM patients by a diabetologist.
Two groups of patients were formed: The first group was based on a traditional protocol (P1: 230 patients) with patients' blood glucose constantly checked by a diabetologist. In the second structured group (P2: 220 patients) patients were referred to a diabetologist only if they required insulin therapy.
The number of medical visits (P2: 1.28 ± 0.70 vs P1: 3.27 ± 1.44; P < .001) and the percentage of patients with hypoglycemia (P2: 6.8% vs P1: 15.2%; P < .006) were found to be lower in group P2 than in group P1. In both groups, a direct relationship was found between a parental history of diabetes and the risk of GDM (odds ratio [OR]: P1 = 2.2 [1.17-4.12]; P2 = 2.5 [1.26-5.12]). In group P1, it was observed that hyperweight gain in patients who were already overweight before becoming pregnant significantly increased the risk of macrosomia (OR: 3.11 [1.39-25.7]), whereas this was not detected in patients in group P2. In group P2, a correlation was found between macrosomia and insulin therapy (OR: 0.066 vs 0.34). In group P1 and group P2, a correlation was observed between insulin therapy and a family history of diabetes (OR: 2.20 vs 2.27), and a body mass index of greater than 30 kg/m2 in group P2 (OR: 3.0 vs 1.47).
The data we collected show that creating a structured protocol for GDM management reduces the number of medical visits required by patients without increasing the risk of hypoglycemia, macrosomia, or hyperweight gain during pregnancy.