Prepregnancy Counseling Among U.S. Women With Diabetes and Hypertension, 2016–2018


      Individuals who have diabetes or hypertension established before pregnancy are at increased risk for maternal and infant health complications. Guidelines recommend that providers deliver prepregnancy counseling, but little is known about the receipt of those services among patients with chronic conditions.


      Data from the 2016–2018 Pregnancy Risk Assessment Monitoring System, a population-based survey among women with recent live births, were used. Self-reported receipt of prepregnancy counseling on folic acid supplementation, pregnancy desire, contraceptive use, and improving health before pregnancy was examined overall and by diabetes and hypertension status. Multivariable logistic regression examined the association between diabetes and hypertension status and the 4 prepregnancy counseling outcomes. Analyses were conducted in 2020.


      Overall, 2.1% of women reported having both diabetes and hypertension, 1.3% reported having diabetes alone, and 3.1% reported having hypertension alone. Less than half of the sample reported receiving each prepregnancy counseling outcome. In adjusted models, women with hypertension alone were more likely to report each counseling outcome than women without diabetes or hypertension. Women with diabetes alone were only more likely to report receiving counseling about improving health, and women with both conditions were not more likely to report the receipt of any counseling outcome under study.


      Women with prepregnancy diabetes, hypertension, or both reported low levels of the recommended prepregnancy counseling, suggesting an evidence–practice gap that should be addressed to optimize maternal and infant health outcomes. There is a need for evidence-based and patient-centered models of prepregnancy counseling for those with diabetes and hypertension.
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