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Gestational Diabetes Screening: Questions for the doctor

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Gestational diabetes is a type of diabetes that some women develop during pregnancy. When you have diabetes, there's too much sugar (glucose) in your blood.

If you develop gestational diabetes, it can lead to health problems for you and your baby during and after pregnancy. For example:

  • During your pregnancy, your baby is likely to grow bigger than normal. This could make giving birth more difficult – and make it more likely that you'll have a caesarian delivery (C-section).
  • Your baby may be at risk for childhood obesity.
  • You'll be at risk for developing type 2 diabetes after pregnancy. After your baby is born, you'll need to get tested regularly for type 2 diabetes.

If you have gestational diabetes, you and your doctor or midwife can work together to protect you and your baby. You can lower your risk for gestational diabetes by eating healthy and staying active before and during your pregnancy.

Getting tested for gestational diabetes is part of regular prenatal care (health care during pregnancy). Usually, you'll get the test between 24 and 28 weeks of pregnancy.

What about cost?

Under the Affordable Care Act, most health insurance plans must cover testing for gestational diabetes. Depending on your insurance, you may be able to get tested at no cost to you. Check with your insurance company to learn more.

What do I ask the doctor?

Visiting the doctor can be stressful. It helps to have questions written down before your appointment. You may also want to ask a family member or close friend to go with you to take notes.

Print this list of questions, and take it with you the next time you visit your doctor or midwife.

  • What puts me at risk for gestational diabetes?
  • What can I do to lower my risk?
  • How will you test me for gestational diabetes?
  • How could gestational diabetes affect my baby’s health?
  • How could gestational diabetes affect my health?
  • If I have gestational diabetes, what happens next?

Content last updated October 15, 2020

Reviewer Information

This information on gestational diabetes screening was adapted from materials from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases.

Reviewed by:
Shin Kim
Division of Reproductive Health
National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Michelle Owens-Gary
Division of Diabetes Translation
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

August 2018

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