Treatment with metformin appeared to cut the risk of gestational diabetes in a study of 72 women with polycystic ovary syndrome.
The women together had a total of 76 pregnancies during which they were treated with metformin; the incidence of gestational diabetes in these pregnancies was 8%. In contrast, 39 other women with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) who were not diabetic and were not treated with metformin but were managed at the same medical center had a 23% incidence of gestational diabetes, Dr. Charles J. Glueck reported in a poster at the annual scientific sessions of the American Heart Association.
Prior reports have established that gestational diabetes occurs in 25%-45% of women with PCOS. In contrast, the risk of gestational diabetes among the general U.S. population is 1%-4%, said Dr. Glueck, medical director of the Cholesterol Center at Jewish Hospital, Cincinnati.
The 72 women with PCOS but without diabetes began receiving metformin at a daily dosage of 2.55 g before they conceived.
These women also adhered to a daily diet with 1,500 calories that was high in protein (26% of calories) and low in carbohydrates (44% of calories).
A total of 65 women continued to take metformin throughout the term of their subsequent pregnancy. The drug was well tolerated and did not appear to have an adverse effect on any of the children who were delivered.
Source: Diabetes In Control Dot Com.