Now that you’re in the Second Trimester, your prenatal appointments will become shorter, only about 15 minutes each. These visits will begin like any other, with your healthcare provider checking your weight and blood pressure to make sure that all is progressing smoothly.
Like always, your healthcare provider will take your blood pressure, weight, and have you leave a urine sample, which they will test for elevated levels of sugar and protein, indicators of gestational diabetes and preeclampsia, respectively. The healthcare provider will also check Baby’s heart rate with a fetal doppler, just to make sure everything is going smoothly.
In addition, your healthcare provider may have you take a glucose screening test that can determine your risk of developing gestational diabetes. Once at the office, you’ll be asked to drink a cold, sugary substance containing 50 grams of glucose within five minutes. Following this, your healthcare provider will have you wait for an hour while the glucose seeps into your blood, to see how efficiently your body is able to process sugar. Once the hour has passed, your blood will be drawn, and this efficiency measured. These results will become available by your next appointment. A measurement that is too high (meaning you cannot process glucose efficiently) does not necessarily conclusively point to gestational diabetes, rather, if your reading lies outside of the safe zone your healthcare provider will have you take a longer, more comprehensive, and more confident Glucose Tolerance Test, which will assuredly confirm or deny the development of gestational diabetes.
- “Gestational Diabetes: FAQ177.” ACOG. American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, 9/13/2015. Web.
- “Signs & Symptoms.” Preeclampsia Foundation. Preeclampsia Foundation, 7/5/2010. Web.
- Mayo Clinic Staff. “Glucose challenge test.” Mayo Clinic. Mayo Clinic, 4/17/2013. Web.