At my last doctors appointment (yesterday) there were some symptoms that have caused concerns. My normal doctor is still on holidays (a Summer hazard of Norway – everyone disappears for six weeks all at the same time) so I had a very young female doctor. Two scary words were brought up at the appointment: diabetes and pre-eclampsia.
Pre-eclampsia can be a serious condition – it can lead to life threatening complications to you and the baby. It effects the health of the placenta and can cause problems to the growth of the baby. The only way to cure it is by delivery of the baby and placenta. There are a few symptoms to look out for – high blood pressure, protein in the urine and oedema (puffy/swelling of the hands and feet). My blood pressure has always been good, about 70-80/120. The last urine test with the midwife showed no protein. However, I do have oedema. It’s normal to get a little puffy in pregnancy especially by the end so I didn’t make a fuss. But now even when I wear my hubbies socks (size 47 male – yes, he has the biggest feet I have ever seen!) I still get very deep sock marks around my ankles. However, I forgot (like so many times) to bring in a morning urine sample to test. As I had another ultrasound appointment at the hospital the next day (today) the doctor insisted that I take a morning sample to them.
I was the one who brought up the word ‘diabetes’. At my last midwife appointment she mentioned that because of some of my symptoms the doctor will need to organise a diabetes test. Diabetes, better known as Gestational Diabetes in pregnant women, can be developed in later pregnancy. Usually it goes after birth but sometimes it doesn’t. I’ve already had three kids and haven’t developed diabetes but it’s always been a concern of mine. My grandma died of diabetes when she was 40. I’ve always been wary of the disease as it took away my grandma before I was born – my dad was only 13. The doctor ordered a blood test then and there at the clinic. As soon as the results came in the microbiologist called the doctor. She was with another patient and wouldn’t answer so the microbiologist immediately went into the consultation room to talk with her. Hmmm – that has never happened before after a blood test. The microbiologist stuck a post-it on my pregnancy record for the hospital. Just some numbers and letters and then insisted that I do a morning urine test for the hospital the next day. Of course, it made me curious.
At home I went straight onto the internet to get some knowledge. I found out that normal human blood sugar level should be 3.3-7.0. Mine was 7.3. The other test was Haemoglobin. Normal should be 4-5.9%. The International Diabetes Federation recommends that patients should be below 6.5% and the American Diabetes Association say 7%. I was 10.3%. Oops!
Well, this morning I’ve been a good girl and did a proper urine sample. This next visit to the hospital will be the last turning point to the story before the climax. But I hope this time my life doesn’t play out to a Hollywood movie. (The last turning point in a Hollywood screenplay has to be so dramatic that propels the hero into making character building decisions that inevitably leads to a loose or gain all climax.)