Volume 116, Issue 3 p. 442-451

Body composition by dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry in women with previous pre-eclampsia or small-for-gestational-age offspring

AL Berends

Corresponding Author

AL Berends

Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Division of Obstetrics and Prenatal Medicine

Dr AL Berends, Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Erasmus MC, University Medical Centre Rotterdam, Room Number 2224a, PO Box 2040, 3000 CA Rotterdam, the Netherlands. Email [email protected]Search for more papers by this author
MC Zillikens

MC Zillikens

Department of Internal Medicine, University Medical Centre Rotterdam, Rotterdam, the Netherlands

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CJM de Groot

CJM de Groot

Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Division of Obstetrics and Prenatal Medicine

Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Haaglanden Medical Centre, The Hague, the Netherlands

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F Rivadeneira

F Rivadeneira

Department of Internal Medicine, University Medical Centre Rotterdam, Rotterdam, the Netherlands

Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, University Medical Centre Rotterdam, Rotterdam, the Netherlands

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BA Oostra

BA Oostra

Department of Clinical Genetics

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CM van Duijn

CM van Duijn

Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, University Medical Centre Rotterdam, Rotterdam, the Netherlands

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EAP Steegers

EAP Steegers

Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Division of Obstetrics and Prenatal Medicine

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First published: 21 January 2009
Citations: 18

Part of this research was presented as an oral presentation at the European Congress of the International Society for the Study of Hypertension in Pregnancy, 24–26 May 2007, Reykjavik, Iceland and at the annual meeting of the Society for Gynecologic Investigation, 26–29 March 2008, San Diego, CA, USA.

Abstract

Objective To investigate differences in body composition and fat distribution between women with previous pre-eclampsia or small-for-gestational-age (SGA) offspring and those with uncomplicated pregnancies.

Design Cohort study.

Setting Population-based study in a genetically isolated population in the southwest of the Netherlands.

Population Women after pregnancies complicated by pre-eclampsia (n=45), SGA offspring (n=53) and uncomplicated pregnancies (n=106).

Methods Women were compared for body composition and fat distribution variables, assessed by dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA) and anthropometrics at a mean follow-up time of 10.8 (SD ±5.9) years after pregnancy.

Main outcome measures Total lean and fat mass, android fat mass, gynoid fat mass, android-to-gynoid fat ratio, waist and hip circumference, waist-to-hip ratio.

Results Women with previous pre-eclampsia compared with controls had higher mean total fat mass index (11.5 ± 0.6 versus 9.7 ± 0.4 kg/m2; P = 0.03), lean mass index (15.8 ± 0.3 versus 14.5 ± 0.2 kg/m2; P =0.001) and body mass index ([BMI]; 28.4 ± 0.8 versus 25.4 ± 0.5 kg/m2; P = 0.005). Their waist circumferences (90.7 ± 2.0 versus 78.5 ± 1.3 cm; P < 0.001) and waist-to-hip ratios (0.86 ± 0.01 versus 0.77 ± 0.01; P < 0.001) were also higher as well as android fat mass (2.8 ± 0.2 versus 2.1 ± 0.1 kg; P = 0.01) and android-to-gynoid fat ratios (0.45 ± 0.02 versus 0.39 ± 0.01; P = 0.02). Mean total fat, lean and BMI was not significantly different between women with previous SGA offspring and controls, yet waist-to-hip ratios (0.83 ± 0.01; P < 0.001) were higher. The observed differences in waist and hip circumference, waist-to-hip ratio and gynoid fat mass could not be attributed to differences in BMI.

Conclusion Women with previous pre-eclampsia or SGA offspring pregnancies compared with those with uncomplicated pregnancies have a preferential fat accumulation in the abdominal over hip region, which may explain, at least partly, their increased cardiovascular risk.