Postpartum Adiponectin Concentration, Insulin Resistance and Metabolic Abnormalities Among Women With Pregnancy-Induced Disturbances


Tina Costacou, PhD, University of Pittsburgh, Department of Epidemiology, 3512 Fifth Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15213


The authors compared postpartum adiponectin levels among women with prior pregnancy-induced disturbances and assessed their association with homeostasis model assessment for insulin resistance (HOMA-IR), the metabolic syndrome (MS), and the Framingham risk score (FRS). Women delivering in 1998 through 2001 and who had gestational diabetes mellitus (n=22), gestational hypertension (n=32), or preeclampsia (n=34) were examined 1 to 2 years after delivery and were grouped-matched to controls (n=29) by age and prepregnancy body mass index. HOMA-IR was increased, adiponectin values were decreased, and there was a higher MS prevalence in women with prior gestational diabetes mellitus (all P<.05). Adiponectin levels were inversely related to HOMA-IR (r=−0.45; P<.0001) and FRS (r=−0.25; P=.007), and a significant trend for decreasing adiponectin values with increased number of MS components was noted (P trend <.0001). Adiponectin concentration remained a significant correlate of FRS and MS irrespective of pregnancy history; a concentration <10.5 µg/mL provided the optimal cutoff to distinguish those with or without MS. Thus, a lower postpartum adiponectin concentration identifies women at increased cardiovascular risk regardless of pregnancy history.