Blood ketone monitoring: a comparison between gestational diabetes and non-diabetic pregnant women

Author(s): Gin H, Vambergue A, Vasseur C, Rigalleau V, Dufour P, et al.


Aim: To measure ketonemia in a control population of pregnant women and in a population of women with gestational diabetes (GDM). To define a normal ketonemia threshold for the controls and to determine whether or not this value could play a role in the clinical management of women with GDM.

Method: Fifty-six women with a normal OGTT and 49 women with GDM were included and monitored from the 25th to the 37th week of pregnancy. Control subjects agreed to perform glycaemia and ketonemia self-monitoring 3 times a day. In addition, women with GDM were asked to measure their postprandial glycaemia. Glycaemia and ketonemia measurements were performed using Optium meters. Subjects kept a 24-hour food record twice a week.

Results: The mean ketonemia was lower in the control group than in the GDM group (0.01+/-0.10 vs. 0.04+/-0.009 mmol/l; P<0.001). Ketonemia values measured before the midday meal and prior to the evening meal were lower for control subjects than for GDM patients (P=0.002 and P=0.005). Fasting ketonemia was unrelated to ketonuria in the GDM group, whereas there was a correlation in the control group (P=0.006). At least one chronic increase in ketonemia levels was observed in 47% of the women with GDM, compared with only 12% of controls. The lowest levels of evening glycaemia correlated with the highest levels of ketonemia; women with GDM reported lower food and carbohydrate intakes than controls (P<0.001).

Conclusion: This work has enabled the establishment of ketonemia reference standards in non-diabetic pregnant women. If ketonemia does indeed indicate overly restrictive dietary behavior, this parameter could be employed for monitoring adherence to the nutritional recommendations for GDM.

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