Anybody Fail 1-Hour Glucose Test and Choose to Skip 3-Hour Test?

Updated on April 12, 2010
J.E. asks from Choctaw, OK
20 answers

I'm pregnant with my 3rd baby. With my other two, the 1-hour glucose tests were administered differently than this time. I failed this one, but I've been under a decent amount of stress, I did not sleep well for several days before the test, my iron levels are really low, and my diet has been very erratic for the last few weeks (due to the stress & lack of sleep). I asked to retake the 1-hour test and they said NO.

Because of these factors, and the different way the test was given this time, I do not trust the 1-hour result. I do not react well to the glucose solution in general, and I am reluctant to bombard my system with it again after having to fast for the 3-hour test. Fasting is a sure way to make me vomit which would make the test invalid. Either way, I will not just "check my sugar and shoot up insulin" at regular intervals "just in case" as a treatment. This is NOT a reliable way to treat diabetes in general and does NOT help regulate and maintain normal levels. I also do not eat breakfast (never have or it makes me vomit). I cannot eat anything within several hours of waking in the morning, and cannot easily conform to a scheduled diet. I eat when I'm hungry, and if I try to eat on a schedule, it makes me sick.

I did some reading up on glucose tolerance testing and found conflicting research. One conflict was that doctors have different opinions on whether to fast or not before the test. Another is that they don't agree on the "normal" ranges that they use for the lab values. Yet another is that doctors have differing ideas as to treatment, if any treatment at all, and differing opinions as to whether ANY treatment actually positively affects the baby at birth.

Does anyone have any advice on a more reliable alternative test? My uterus is measuring perfect for my weeks gestation (28w) and I've only gained 10 pounds. I'm a bit overweight, but otherwise healthy and this pregnancy is progressing exactly the same as both of my previous ones. I have had two average-weight healthy babies (1st=7lb 1oz, 2nd=6lb 12oz) and both born on their own time with no complications and before their due dates (1st=37w4d, 2nd=38w4d). Other than the failed test, there is no indication that anything is "off" with this pregnancy.

Thanks for your advice.

1 mom found this helpful

What can I do next?

  • Add yourAnswer own comment
  • Ask your own question Add Question
  • Join the Mamapedia community Mamapedia
  • as inappropriate
  • this with your friends

So What Happened?


I got my test results Fri, so there’s been no time to talk w/doc yet (just a random clinic nurse). Out of fear, I may be assuming the worst from my doc at this point, but I have an appt w/her Mon to discuss it further.

FYI, this is new territory for me. I am not making excuses to get out of the 3-hour test because it’s not fun. I puke a lot for no reason other than food & I do not agree. Not eating, and then drinking ANYTHING on an empty stomach makes me puke! By fasting for the test, then drinking the gluc solution on an empty stomach, I’m sure I’ll throw it up and make the test invalid. I want to diminish the shock and stress on my baby and my system, so I’d rather take another test that I can actually COMPLETE that will clearly confirm or alleviate any GD concerns.

Another concern for me is that it's been 12 years since I’ve dealt w/military docs for pregnancy. My last pregnancy was cared for by a civilian doc because no military hospital was available. The last time I dealt with a military facility for pregnancy, they had some seriously OUTDATED methods of doing some things and some cool NEW ways of doing other things. This is why I researched for more info (and asked for your advice and experiences) rather than just taking the nurse’s word to “get the other test.”

My big issue with the military docs back then was ultrasounds. Their policy was to refuse ANY ultrasounds unless you were bleeding significantly (defined as FILLING more than 1 pad per hour—MAXI pad, not ultrathin pad). They didn’t check to confirm baby’s size, due date, or possible birth defects like spina bifida unless you had a test come back WAY out of normal limits. If test results were just a little off, they didn’t consider that enough “risk” for them to perform an u/s. Since then they’ve “woken up” to the reality that u/s are valuable tools for lots of diagnostic information, not just emergency situations.

So anyway, I want to offer a BIG THANK YOU for your advice & your own experiences! This eases my mind greatly!

Featured Answers



answers from Bloomington on

I was pregnant with twins and two times I tried to take the test and both time I threw up and couldn't finish them then I ended up in the hospital with early labor and they kept asking me about it I begged them not to make me do it and they made me do the test again, I was so mad because here I am feeling helpless in the hospital, I felt weird and felt like I was shaking they had to give me a shot to counter act the test. I would have rather said screw it and just gone by the diet. I would just be careful and watch the diet.

More Answers



answers from Los Angeles on

Two pregnancies and I failed the one hour test both times. Took the 3 hour test both times and passed both times. My doctor said since it was close, but not "technically" gestational diabetes he wanted me to monitor my levels. This meant buying the glucose monitor and testing blood sugar levels after meals etc. My blood sugar levels were always in the normal range. I really followed directions and monitered religously on my first pregnancy. When the same thing happened on the 2nd pregnancy, I was a little more relaxed about the testing. I did monitor my levels but not as much as I did with the first. If you are concerned have the doctor prescribe a glucose monitor and test your sugar levels randomly. At least it would put your mind at ease which could help with stress levels a little!



answers from South Bend on

Don't know about the tests but I see a red flag here. Get a hold of those iron levels for the baby's and your sake. Reasearch all this out nutritionally.
Metagenics has a very good iron supplement which is combined with folic acid for optimal absorbtion. Ask your Dr about it. Stay well.



answers from Milwaukee on

Maybe pick up a bg monitor and self-test at home, hourly, for a day or two. That might help the dr. without doing the 3 hour test.



answers from Chicago on

I skipped both test with my second pregnancy because of how unreliable those tests are...there are also some Dr who think it's a diagnosis looking for a disease. Once you start doing research on it, it really makes you question the science and need of those tests, doesn't it?

In any case, many midwives skip the test completely and just do random blood glucose tests. You could always do that. Or, you could just skip it and not worry about it. You've had two healthy pregnancies, chances you, you will have another.

I was a bit nervous at first about skipping it, but it didn't take me long to get over that. ;-) I got so sick when I did the tests with my daughter (and of course I had to do the 3 hour since the 1 hour has a 50% fail rate!)



answers from Cincinnati on

You do need to work with your doc. Sugars not properly controlled can have impact both on you and your fetus. Consider going for the diabetes diet training (usually runs for about 1 hour), and stick with the recommended diet! Also suggest to your doc that you could do the glucose sticks (blood testing), and see how your body is dealing with the glucose/insulin levels. Just "pretend" that you are diabetic, and do the blood sticks. Then you and your doc will have a reliable, scientifically proven levels to better assess your needs and those of your fetus. If you stay w/ the diet, your blood stick levels should be stable and PROVE that there is no need for insulin support. Or, they will PROVE that you do need the support, and you can see what is needed as well as having control of what you are eating and drinking - you will see the effects.



answers from Columbus on

Do you have any other symptoms? (urinating alot, getting up at night, really thirsty?) I had gestational DB with my first pregnancy and I never had to use insulin - it was handled through diet. I went on a 2000 calorie diabetic diet and it was completely controlled. I just had to keep a record of my sugar levels throughout the day. I didn't have diabetes with my second pregnancy.



answers from Chicago on

Hi Jacki. This is not what you want to hear, but I want to give you a bit more information about some of the things you have mentioned. I am not trying to scold you or scare you!! I want you to have information before you make your decision.

The A1c will not give you or your Doctor the results you need. It is an average score of your blood sugar over the last 3 months -- and your blood sugars will have been within normal range for, at least, 2 of those 3 months. Hence, your score will NOT be indicative of any developing issue with your blood sugar. Even if your blood sugars have been climbing for over a week, those numbers are not significant enough to move the other 11 weeks of normal blood sugar levels. This test will not help you.

Lack of sleep, stress and low iron have very little to do with your blood sugar. It cannot skew your results enough to put your blood sugar in a "danger zone."

I can promise you, with 100% certainty, that no doctor will EVER instruct you to "shoot up insulin" at intervals as a "just in case." Taking insulin without a physiological need will result in damaging, if not catastrophic, results to you and your baby. Yes, you may be instructed to to test your own blood sugar (for the good of you and the baby) at intervals. But insulin therapy will not be given without real, and serious, need.

I'm not familiar with your readings about the lack of positive affect that treatment has for the baby. However, research does prove, without any shadow of a doubt, that pregnancies developed by Moms with out of range blood sugars can result in all sorts of terrible physical deformities to the baby, including major heart defects and underdeveloped brain. High blood sugars are not to be taken lightly. Fortunately, you are beyond your first trimester, which significantly decreases the severity of the damages that high blood sugar can cause.

I know this is not what you are hoping to hear, and I'm sorry. I can tell you are very frustrated and maybe even frightened. I wish only the very best for you and your baby. PLEASE follow-up and let us know all about the happy, healthy baby you give birth to in about 10 weeks!



answers from Indianapolis on

You're right, starving yourself and then taking the test isn't a great idea. Personally, I'd set up a diet and schedule with the doctor so tat you're eating well and testing your blood sugar regularly throughout the day. That's what many midwives do.



answers from Gainesville on

I have to agree with the other ladies that you need to do something. I don't know anything about the A1C test they suggested but my opinion would be you can't do nothing. You have no way of knowing that this pregnancy is progressing exactly the same. I'm not saying you have to do the 3 hour test but you have to do something. The consequences of undiagnosed gestational diabetes could be devastating. No worth that risk imho.



answers from Dayton on

Are you going to WPAFB? Make an appt w/the midwife Joanne. Talk to her about your concerns, she may agree to an alternative for you. PM me and I'll outline the alternative that I suggest my clients present to their doctors, and so-far it has been well-received @ various providers, altho I haven't had anyone need it @ the base yet. I don't think the docs there would be on-board, but Joanne is very reasonable and does follow the midwifery model of care. I'd say follow your gut, if you feel all's well, it probably is, you will notice one of the previous posters KNEW something was wrong even tho the test results did not confirm that. Always follow your gut and you will have few regrets.
Many blessings
Student Midwife AAMI # 1984
Waterbirth credentialed



answers from Cleveland on

I say go with your 'gut' (no pun intended!) feeling! If you think things are OK and you feel that you don't need the test-then don't have it! I had no glucose testing with any of my 3 kids and they were fine. You know your body better than any doctor!!



answers from Cleveland on

I have three kids as well. NEver failed the test till my last pregnancy
And took the second test which I also failed. Diabetes is dangerous if not regulated and should be taken seriously. YOu should listen to Your doctor.


answers from New York on

Jacki, Ask your doctor if you can have the AIC blood test a more reliable test, this will show what your blood glucose levels have been over the past three months. The AIC test is used to monitor how well people who already have diabetes are controlling the disease and most recently studies show that it is also a more reliable test for diagnosis. It is a simple blood test.

Your doctor most likely told you that you could not repeat the 1-hour glucose tolerance test because insurance will not pay for it, but if you pay for it yourself I don't see why he would not let you retake the test. I know the test is terrible!!!! Untreated gestational diabetes can cause devastating birth defects. Insist on the AIC blood test.
Good Luck



answers from Columbus on

I have Celiac disease and a strong family history of Diabetes. I failed the 1 hour GTT but chose not to do the 3 hour. The solution made me sick for 3 days and wasn't going to put my already high risk pregnancy at more of a risk.

I chose to do finger stick blood glucose monitoring. I wrote down everything I ate and tested 3-4 times per day at first, then it was down to twice a day. I was never put on medication or insulin. I just watched what I ate. It was simplier than doing the 3 hour GTT; however, I am a dietitian and was aware of what I should eat.

Good Luck! Do you have a family physician that would repeat the 1h GTT for you? Did you ask a nurse at the doctors or the physician themselves? If you explain to the Physician, you may have better success in getting them to repeat the one hour instead of a staff member.



answers from Minneapolis on




answers from Chicago on

I took the 3 hr test, failed just barley. I just had to monitor my sugar and watch my carbs. I did not have to take any insulin. If your dr is suggesting insulin I think they are wacked. Unless you have had high blood sugar tests with testing your sugar 4 times a day. I know some people do need insulin, however I think the vast majority do not need it, they just need to keep an eye on their sugar levels and control it with diet. I was happy to go to a nutrionist and I learned a lot about food and my body. Good luck.



answers from Columbus on

Get a hemoglobin A1C test and there will be no question about your glucose levels. I think they are even available at drug stores now, but try to get your doctor/lab to do it first.

No fasting and it will accurately let you know what your average glucose levels have been over the last 3 months.

Does diabetes run in your family?



answers from Minneapolis on

I am at the end of my third pregnancy and I always failed the 1 hour test and pasted the 3 hour test well with my first two. This time around my midwife gave me a 7 pt leeway on the test and if I was still within the range with that leeway she let me slide. Now I do get random glucose tests when I go in just to make sure things are on the up and up. Just a thought. I don't know how far off you were from passing the test. Just make sure you are eating right. And well taking a prick in the office is worth the hassle if you ask me I would check about that.



answers from Dallas on

Hemoglobin A1C is the test to have done (it's a blood draw). I failed my 1 hour glucose when I was pregnant too. I took the 3 hour test and I was fine. I'm a little overweight as well. I think that the docs automatically assume you're unhealthy and will have diabetes if you;re a bit overweight and that's just not true! Also, as a patient, it's your right to refuse any test or treatment.

For Updates and Special Promotions
Follow Us

Related Questions