Performance of guidelines for the screening and diagnosis of gestational diabetes mellitus during the COVID-19 pandemic: A scoping review of the guidelines and diagnostic studies evaluating the recommended testing strategies.
Curtis AM., Farmer AJ., Roberts NW., Armitage LC.
Aim: The COVID-19 pandemic has necessitated less resource-intensive testing guidelines to identify gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM). We performed a scoping review of the international evidence reporting the ability of diagnostic tests recommended during the pandemic to accurately identify patients with GDM, compared to pre-pandemic reference standards, and associated test and clinical outcomes. Methods: A comprehensive search of the literature was carried out in Embase, LitCovid, Cochrane Covid-19 study register, and medRxiv on 14th June 2021. Results: 145 unique citations were returned; after screening according to pre-specified inclusion criteria by title and abstract and then full text, 13 studies involving 40,836 pregnant people and an additional 52,884 instances of OGTT were included. Thresholds defined in the Australian pandemic guideline appear adequate to identify most GDM cases; false negative cases appeared at lower risk of hyperglycaemia-in-pregnancy(HIP)-related events. For UK and Canadian guidelines, a larger proportion would be misdiagnosed as non-GDM; these false negative cases had broadly equivalent HIP-related event rates as true positives. Conclusions: The OGTT remains the most effective test to identify abnormal glucose processing in pregnancy, supporting the prompt return to standard guidelines post-pandemic. Cohort studies investigating the impact of the change in guidelines on GDM pregnancies and associated outcomes are needed.