Maternal-fetal glucose metabolism and fetal growth retardation: Is there an association?

Jeanna M. Piper, Nancy T. Field, Kenneth Higby, Byron D. Elliott, Oded Langer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVE: To test the hypothesis that in normotensive pregnancies decreased maternal glucose response leads to relative fetal hypoglycemia and hypoinsulinemia, which result in delayed fetal growth. STUDY DESIGN: We enrolled patients with and without risk factors for growth retardation. Each under went an oral glucose tolerance test with both glucose and insulin evaluation. Cord blood was obtained for glucose and insulin evaluation. RESULTS: The normotensive pregnancies at risk had lower maternal glucose levels (index, 91 vs. 116 mg/dL; P < .05), a trend to ward lower maternal insulin levels (index, 398 vs. 483 μIU/mL; P = NS) and normal maternal insulin/glucose ratios. We found no differences, however, in the fetal metabolic parameters (glucose 83 vs. 78 mg/dL, insulin 17 vs. 24 μIU/mL; P = NS). CONCLUSION: Maternal glucose metabolism is altered in nonhypertensive pregnancies, with a risk of delayed fetal growth; however, the fetal glucose response may remain normal in the face of fetal growth retardation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)761-766
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Reproductive Medicine for the Obstetrician and Gynecologist
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 1 1996


  • fetal growth retardation
  • glucose

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology


Dive into the research topics of 'Maternal-fetal glucose metabolism and fetal growth retardation: Is there an association?'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this