Study Shows Impact of Sleep on Gestational Weight Gain During Pregnancy

ATLANTA (Feb. 1, 2016)—In a study to be presented on Feb. 4 at 1:15 p.m. EST, at the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine’s annual meeting, The Pregnancy Meeting™, in Atlanta, researchers will present findings from a study titled, Short and long sleep durations in pregnancy are associated with extremes of gestational weight gain.

Epidemiologic data from non-pregnant women has linked poor sleep with obesity and weight gain. The researchers in this study set out to determine the relationship between objectively measured sleep duration and weight gain during pregnancy.

Women studied were enrolled in the nuMoM2b study, a multi-center prospective cohort study of nulliparous women with a singleton gestation. They were recruited to wear an actigraph to record objective sleep activity for seven consecutive days. Women with pregestational diabetes and chronic hypertension were excluded from the study. Sleep duration was calculated as an average across study nights.  Actigraphy and weight gain data were reviewed for 751 women.  The majority of women (74.8%) had a sleep duration between seven and nine hours.

The data suggested that both short and long sleep duration in pregnancy are associated with gestational weight gain.  “We know that poor sleep in pregnancy has been linked to adverse pregnancy outcomes,” explained Francesca Facco, M.D., one of the researchers of the study who is with the Eunice Kennedy Shriver NICHD NuMoM2b Network in Bethesda, Md.  Dr. Facco will present the findings at the SMFM annual meeting. “Our findings provide a potential mechanism for poor sleep in pregnancy and adverse outcomes,” Facco added.

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A copy of the abstract is available at http://www.smfmnewsroom.org and below.  For interviews please contact Vicki Bendure at Vicki@bendurepr.com 202-374-9259 (cell).

The Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine (est. 1977) is the premiere membership organization for obstetricians/gynecologists who have additional formal education and training in maternal-fetal medicine.  The society is devoted to reducing high-risk pregnancy complications by sharing expertise through continuing education to its 2,000 members on the latest pregnancy assessment and treatment methods. It also serves as an advocate for improving public policy, and expanding research funding and opportunities for maternal-fetal medicine. The group hosts an annual meeting in which groundbreaking new ideas and research in the area of maternal-fetal medicine are shared and discussed.  For more information visit www.smfm.org.

Abstract 33    Short and long sleep durations in pregnancy are associated with extremes of gestational weight gain

Authors: Francesca Facco1,2, Kathryn Reid3,1, William Grobman3,1, Corette Parker4,1, Shannon Hunter4,1, Matthew Koch4,1, Phyllis Zee3,1

1for the Eunice Kennedy Shriver NICHD NuMoM2b Network, Bethesda, MD, 2Magee-Womens Research Institute, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA, 3Northwestern University, Chicago, IL, 4RTI International, Triangle Park, NC

Objective: Epidemiologic data from non-pregnant cohorts have linked poor sleep with obesity and weight gain. Our objective was to determine the relationship between objectively measured sleep duration and weight gain in pregnancy.

Study Design: Women enrolled in the nuMoM2b study, a multi-center prospective cohort study of nulliparous women with a singleton gestation, were recruited at the 2nd study visit (16- 21 weeks’) to wear an actigraph to record objective sleep activity for 7 consecutive days. Women with pregestational diabetes and chronic hypertension were excluded. Sleep duration (SD) was calculated as an average across study nights and categorized as follows: <6, 6 to <7, 7 to <8, 8 to <9, and >9 hours/night. Gestational weight gain (GWG) was calculated relative to self-reported prepregnancy weight using measured weights at visit 2 and visit 3 (22-29 weeks’), and chart abstracted last weight prior to delivery. We examined GWG using gestational age-standardized z-scores, a measure of GWG that by design is uncorrelated with gestational age at measurement and BMI. Z scores of <-1 and >+1 were used to define groups with the smallest and largest normalized weight gains, respectively.

Results: Actigraphy and weight data were available for 751 women. The majority of women (74.8%) had a SD between 7 to <9 hours; 2.1% and 5.2% had a SD of <6 and >9 hours/night, respectively. Non-linear relationships were observed between SD and GWG (see Table). For all GWG assessments, large GWG (Z>+1) became less frequent as SD increased. Women with the shortest (<6) and the longest (> 9) SD had the highest rates of small GWG ( Z<-1). Differences were statistically significant for GWG at Visit 2 and Visit 3 (p<.0001, p=.04) and were similar in magnitude for the last weight prior to delivery (p=0.0504).

Conclusion: Our data suggests that both short and long SD in pregnancy are associated with GWG. Poor sleep in pregnancy has been linked to adverse pregnancy outcomes, and our findings provide one potential mechanism for this association.

Abstract 33

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