Gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) can result
in a number of adverse outcomes for both mother and baby, some of which may be
long term. Women with GDM have a higher risk of Type 2 diabetes later in life. Furthermore,
affected babies have an increased risk of obesity, glucose intolerance and
diabetes in late adolescence and young adulthood.
With evidence showing the prevalence of GDM increasing over the past 10 years, more efforts have been made to recommend lifestyle changes to prevent and treat GDM, such as diet and exercise. Although research shows that GDM can be effectively managed by lifestyle modification, there appear to be limited options for culturally tailored lifestyle modification interventions.
Systematic reviews suggest that tailoring education to the cultural background of patients with Type 2 diabetes is important1. Women with GDM from different cultural backgrounds may therefore vary in their acceptance of lifestyle modification advice, which may result in poorer outcomes.
To provide evidence to support our hypothesis “CALD Women with GDM will have better maternal and perinatal outcomes when they are provided with culturally tailored education in lifestyle modification as compared to non-culturally tailored education”.
Three stages of research are proposed:
Stage 1: To investigate differences in maternal and perinatal outcomes for women from different CALD backgrounds attending a specialist public hospital antenatal clinic.
Stage 2: To investigate the basis for these cultural differences using qualitative methods.
Stage 3:Using results from stage 2, to design and implement culturally tailored education for GDM women from CALD backgrounds, and measure its effectiveness.
An evidence based and effective educational program in lifestyle modifications for women with GDM that can be delivered in a range of community and hospital based health care settings.