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38 weeks Gestational Diabetes Test- advice needed please

(5 Posts)
TheMummyAbroad Fri 21-Oct-11 21:09:33


First off, I live abroad (Costa Rica) so the medical system is all different over here.

I am 38 weeks today, but it feels more like 138 weeks... lots of pregnancy woes the latest of which is an elevated blood sugar testsad. Results were 184 and normal = less than 140.

So now I have been asked to do a second test where blood will be taken three times, BUT to do it I have to:

walk 25 mins to the clinic (I have SPD - so thats already a challenge!)
queue up for an hour at 6am, until clinic doors open at 7am (otherwise you dont get seen)
take 3 year old DS with me and entertain him whole time.
Survive on an empty stomach for 4 hours while queuing/tests are being done
walk back
then wait a week for the results.

you may be able to detect I am not keen on any of this! considering that I will be 39 weeks when I get the results its tempting to just not bother. Is that really irresponsible though? could something really bad happen if I just ignore it and dont bother doing the test?

I asked my doctor what would happen if GD is confirmed and she just said "oh well, you will probably have had your baby by the time the results get back" hmm

I am hoping someone can provide a bit more help/info than her response!

Thanks MNers xxx

hubbahubster Fri 21-Oct-11 22:56:10

TBH I think it's pointless at 38 weeks. The main issue would be shoulder dystocia due to size of baby and by 38 weeks I don't see how you could possibly do anything about it. Could they give you a growth scan instead and offer you a CS if baby seems dangerously big? That would be the safest option. Good luck!

BartletForAmerica Sat 22-Oct-11 10:01:08

I'm a diabetes specialist, so can tell you what we would do with you here with a result like that.

Firstly, I'd want to know what the blood sugar was done and what previous results were.

Secondly, I'd tell you that we don't know what 'normal' blood sugar is in this late stage of pregnancy. We have a rough idea of what is a high blood sugar and what has bad effects on the baby around 24-28 weeks, but not really later on.

Thirdly, I'd get to test your own blood sugar with a home blood glucose meter and ask you to avoid foods that make your blood sugar go high as you work them out (everyone is a bit different). You'd see a dietician to go over your diet and any improvements that could be made.

If you have had high blood sugars throughout the pregnancy, your baby might be bigger so a growth scan (remembering they are not completely accurate and are just a guide) would be a good idea. That would allow a plan for delivery.

The other reason for sorting out your blood sugars now (with the caveat that we don't know what is normal at this stage of pregnancy) is that high blood sugars in you mean high blood sugars in the baby, which raises the baby's level of insulin. This means when the baby is born, their insulin level continues to be high so the baby can get low blood sugars. Normally this can be sorted with early and frequent feeding, but sometimes (rarely) it can cause the baby problems with fitting and might need formula/expressed milk top ups via syringe to give the baby enough sugar to feed properly.

Hope that helps and that some of that can translate to your medical care over there.

GuillotinedMaryLacey Sat 22-Oct-11 10:06:57

I was diagnosed with GD at 38 weeks with dd (subsequently they admitted I didn't have it but that's by the by). I had a growth scan. Was given a blood sugar monitor and told to ring immediately if levels went over the maximum allowed (they didn't). I was induced at 39+5 and dd was born on her due date. They tested her blood sugar frequently and tbh, forced me into formula. Apart from the feeding side which still angers me, there wasn't an awful lot they could do at that stage.

TheMummyAbroad Sat 22-Oct-11 15:02:28

Wow, very very useful information, thanks so much. I am still deciding whether or not to do the extra test - I think I will see how I am feeling on Monday, but its good to know all the possible consequences and what I should be looking out for.

Bartlet for America I had my blood sugar tested at about 15 weeks and the results were normal. I also had tests in a previous pregnancy at 20 weeks and results were OK, although I had a 4.07kg baby and both my husband and I are really small people. Looks like I have been tested all at the wrong times in both pregnancies hmm

hubahubster I have had a few private growth scans and yes, baby is measuring big. I was not that surprised though as my DS was huge too, so was kind of expecting it - at least I know I have squeezed out a fat one before and it was OK.

GuilotinedMaryLacey good to have the heads up re: feeding. This is something I am worried about as I wasnt able to feed beyond a month last time and really want things to work out better this time.

Thanks so much for taking the time to reply everyone smile

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