Background: Women with gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) are at an increased risk for
developing metabolic syndrome, type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM), and cardiovascular disease. In this
review, we will discuss postpartum cardiovascular and diabetes risk in women with a history of GDM
and different ways to improve postpartum screening.
Methods: This review involves a comprehensive literature review on gestational diabetes and postpartum
risk for cardiovascular disease and diabetes mellitus as well as post-partum screening methods.
Results: Cardiovascular risk post-partum is potentiated by increased inflammatory markers leading to
worsening atherosclerosis and cardiovascular events downstream. Decreased insulin sensitivity and β
cell compensation, recurrent GDM, maternal factors such as pre and post-partum weight gain and lactation
may contribute to T2DM risk. Postpartum glucose testing is essential in screening women as
hyperglycemia in pregnancy has long term effects on both cardiovascular disease and diabetes risk on
Conclusion: Long and short term improvement to post-partum glucose testing is essential to decreasing
cardiometabolic and diabetes risk in women with gestational diabetes mellitus.