Assessment of cardiac function in fetuses of gestational diabetic mothers during the second trimester

Document Type



Paediatrics and Child Health


Fetuses of diabetic mothers may have structural or functional cardiac abnormalities which increase morbidity and mortality. Isolated functional abnormalities have been identified in the third trimester. The aim of the present study was to assess fetal cardiac function (systolic, diastolic, and global myocardial performance) in the second trimester in mothers with gestational diabetes, and also to relate cardiac function with glycemic control. Mothers with gestational diabetes mellitus referred for fetal cardiac evaluation in the second trimester (between 19 and 24 weeks) from March 2015 to February 2016 were enrolled as case subjects in this study. Non-diabetic mothers who had a fetal echocardiogram done between 19 and 24 weeks for other indications were enrolled as controls. Functional cardiac variables showed a statistically significant difference in isovolumetric relaxation and contraction times and the myocardial performance index and mitral E/A ratios in the gestational diabetic group (p = 0.003). Mitral annular plane systolic excursion was significantly less in the diabetic group (p = 0.01). The only functional cardiac variable found abnormal in mothers with poor glycemic control was the prolonged isovolumetric relaxation time. Functional cardiac abnormalities can be detected in the second trimester in fetuses of gestational diabetic mothers and timely intervention can improve postnatal outcomes.

Publication (Name of Journal)

Pediatric Cardiology