Glucose Pregnancy Test

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What is a Glucose Pregnancy Test?

A Glucose Pregnancy Test is the blood sugar test done at regular intervals in pregnant women after they reach the 24th – 28th week of pregnancy to check for gestational diabetes.

What are other names for Glucose Pregnancy Test?

Glucose Pregnancy Test is also called Oral Glucose tolerance test, Glucose screening test, gestational diabetes test or simply GTT Glucose Tolerance test.

What Is Glucose Pregnancy test
What Is Glucose Pregnancy test

Why is Glucose Pregnancy Test performed?

  • When a woman is pregnant she eats for two so the blood has a high surge of glucose after every meal.
  • During pregnancy certain hormones hamper the functioning of pancreas and hence reduce insulin. Insulin is the hormone that regulates the level of glucose after your meal.
  • It is probable that an overweight woman, Asian, African or Hispanic woman is more prone to having gestational diabetes. These are risk factors for gestational diabetes.
  • Gestational diabetes gets normal after you deliver your baby. However gestational diabetes itself is a risk factor for type 2 diabetes.
  • So a doctor will do a glucose pregnancy test even if you are not having any evident symptoms of gestational diabetes.

What are the symptoms for taking the Glucose Pregnancy Test?

There are symptoms that compel you to take a Glucose Pregnancy Test:

  1. When you suddenly gain weight and it goes on increasing very rapidly
  2. If you feel lethargic all the while and it doesn’t feel like normal sickness
  3. You might be excreting urine of a black color which is due to ketone bodies in urine

When to take Glucose Pregnancy Test?

  1. If you’ve conceived after crossing 25 years of age you are more likely to get gestational diabetes, hence Glucose Pregnancy Test is a must for you.
  2. Again if you have a family history of diabetes then you are more likely to have gestational diabetes and so need a Glucose Pregnancy Test.
  3. If you are overweight or were obese before pregnancy then you need to get a Glucose Pregnancy Test.
  4. If you had complications during previous pregnancy then your doctor will perform a Glucose Pregnancy Test.
  5. In case you are from the ethnic lineage of Africans, Hispanics, Asians etc. Then you need to get a Glucose Pregnancy Test.

How is the Glucose Pregnancy Test done?

There are two kinds of Glucose Pregnancy Test – one is a one step pregnancy test and other is a two step pregnancy test. Depending on your medical history either you’ll choose from them or recommended one of them.

Types of Glucose Pregnancy Test

One step Glucose Pregnancy Test

For this, you have to go fasting for 8 hours before starting the test.

  1. Your doctor gives you a concentrated glucose (sugar syrup) of 75 g (called 75 g OGTT) to drink it in one sitting.

  2. Then ideally your doctor should take 4 blood samples.
    • First would be a zero hour sample – immediately after drinking the sugar syrup.
    • The second sample is taken after one hour of drinking the sugar syrup.
    • The third is taken after one and a half hour of drinking the syrup.
    • While the last is taken after two hours have passed from the time of drinking the syrup.
  3. After the blood tests, you get your reports.

Two Step Glucose Pregnancy Test

First stage of Two Step Glucose Pregnancy Test

You don’t have to go fasting. Your doctor will give you a concentrated glucose syrup of 75 g of sugar to drink. He will withdraw a blood sample after one hour passes from the time of drinking the syrup.

Second stage of Two Step Glucose Pregnancy Test

It is done when one is diagnosed with elevated levels of blood sugar in the range 135 – 140 mg/dL in the first step of Two step Glucose Pregnancy Test. You’ll have to come fasting for the next stage of Two step Glucose Pregnancy Test. Otherwise, a normal glucose will stop the Two Step Glucose Pregnancy Test at the first stage itself.

If you have to come to the second stage then you will undergo the One Step Glucose Pregnancy Test.

  1. Your doctor gives you a concentrated glucose (sugar syrup) of 100 g sugar to drink.

  2. Then your doctor will take 4 blood samples after every sixty minutes or one hour for three hours.
  • First would be a zero hour sample – immediately after drinking the sugar syrup.
  • Second, third and fourth after every one hour.
  1. Then the doctor will perform the blood tests and you will get your reports.

Which is better One Step Glucose Pregnancy Test or Two Step Pregnancy Test?

Some of you might think that One step Glucose Pregnancy Test is better than Two Step Glucose Pregnancy Test. You’d be thinking that in one go you’ll come to know your results and won’t have to drink the syrup twice. But it is always advisable that you repeat any test at least twice. Thus Two Step Glucose Pregnancy Test is preferable to minimize the chances of getting a false report.

One Step Pregnancy Test has its own advantages such as immediate results and is ideal for those who have severe symptoms of gestational diabetes. In such cases the rapid diagnosis helps for immediate onset of treatment.

What to eat before going for a Glucose Pregnancy Test?

  1. Generally a Two Step Glucose Pregnancy Test doesn’t require any special preparatory measures.
  2. You don’t have to go fasting for the Two Step Glucose Pregnancy Test but as soon as you reach you’ll be given a concentrated Glucose syrup. This is done to overload your body with sugars and then your body’s response is studied.
  3. While for a One Step Glucose Pregnancy Test you will need to go fasting for 8 hours, which is like overnight fasting and going empty stomach for the test.

What is the principle of Glucose Pregnancy Test?

A glucose pregnancy test tests the ability of your body’s insulin to deal with sugar overload. Insulin is the regulatory hormone which is responsible for controlling the blood sugar.

Blood samples taken at different stages show the state of sugar metabolism. After three hours the sugar level should go down as by that time insulin does the job.

If this doesn’t happen then it means your insulin hormone is ineffective or the receptors are desensitized. Insulin abnormalities cause diabetes. When this happens during pregnancy due to hormonal misbalance it is ‘Gestational Diabetes’.

What to do after Glucose Pregnancy Test?

A doctor performs the Glucose Pregnancy Test. You really don’t need to do anything after taking a Glucose Pregnancy Test. You will get your Glucose Pregnancy Test reports within two to three days.

How to read Glucose Pregnancy Test?

If the sugar level doesn’t drop even after three hours and is above 140 mg/dL then you have gestational diabetes.

What are the abnormal results for Glucose Pregnancy Test?

Presently the abnormal values for Glucose Pregnancy Test are

  • Fasting blood sugar above 95 mg/dL
  • One hour blood sugar above 180 mg/dL
  • Two-hour blood sugar above 155 mg/dL
  • Three-hour blood sugar above 140 mg/dL

A very important note: We do our best to give the most updated information regarding every health disorder. However, these standard normal values change every few months. They change for every country based on the races, genders and all factors unique to the population of that place. You might click on another link and get a different set of values. A particular value considered abnormal today might come to the normal range tomorrow. It will have different values in different countries. It is always best to allow your doctor do this and never risk your health by trying to analyze things. Don’t invite havoc to your life.

What to do after diagnosis of gestational diabetes?

  1. If one has gestational diabetes then you have to follow certain precautions for the safety of you and your baby.
  2. Never miss your medications for gestational diabetes as skipping it can make you fall into the deep sleep ‘comma’.
  3. Always follow up with your doctor during the 24th to 26th week for checking your gestational diabetes.

Never take gestational diabetes lightly. It can create a lot of complication for your pregnancy and even delivery.

Diabetes is directly associated with your state of consciousness, healing of wounds, metabolism, excretion etc. However, gestational diabetes is not chronic.

The symptoms of gestational diabetes go away once the pregnancy comes to its completion stages. But it is essential that you take the Glucose Pregnancy Test to prevent any regretful complications later.