Faculty of Public Health - Andalas University - OCS, 13th IEA SEA Meeting and ICPH - SDev

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Perceived psychological stress and risk of hyperglycemia during pregnancy
Surabhi Mishra, Avinash Shetty, Chythra R Rao

Last modified: 2018-08-07



The present study evaluates association between stress during pregnancy and Gestational Diabetes Mellitus (GDM), for it can be an effective intervention for its management. Though low stress during pregnancy helps maintain glucose homeostasis, evidences of GDM risk are less extensive. Therefore, this study also identifies its correlation with maternal blood glucose levels.

Materials and methods

A prospective case-control study was carried out among pregnant women attending regular antenatal clinic at two private hospitals. The study comprised of 100 cases and 273 matched controls. Data was collected by personal interviews using a standard questionnaire. Psychological stress was assessed using 10-item Cohen Perceived Stress Scale. Data so collected was reported on 5-point scale. Score of 20 or higher was considered as high stress. Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) was used for analysis.


Results shows high exposure rates for high stress levels among cases (53.0%) compared to controls (8.1%). The odds of GDM experiencing high stress scores ≥20 are higher than <20 (OR:12.9; 95% CI: 7.2-23.1; p<0.001). The study also shows poor or no correlation between stress during pregnancy and maternal blood glucose levels


Despite existence of poor or no relationship with maternal blood glucose levels, high stress levels during pregnancy are potential risk factors for GDM, a major finding of the study.


Stress during pregnancy, Gestational diabetes mellitus, Cohen Perceived Stress Scale, maternal blood glucose level, OGTT