Gestational Diabetes - Insulin vs Glyburide?

Updated on April 21, 2010
C.E. asks from Cincinnati, OH
8 answers

Hi Moms,

I am pregnant with my 2nd child and had gestational diabetes with my first. I expected to get it again, but not being overweight I thought it would be later in pregnancy. Unfortunately I already have it and am only 18 weeks. I found out around 14-15 weeks. The diet did not help so my doctor put me on Glyburide which I used for my first pregnancy but had a lot of problems with. I am having very low blood sugar (37 the other morning!) and don't like the constant up and down. I wasn't working during my first pregnancy and am now, and also have a child to take care of so constantly trying to deal with the ups and downs is a little harder on me than last time. My docotor stated that insulin would be better, but of course I have never given my shots and am scared to do so. Just wondering if anyone else has had to go that route and how was it, any advice. It is very tempting so that I don't have to constantly go get a snack in the middle of the night. Thanks!

Yes want to add that I follow my diet to a tee (saw a dietician the last time and following that same diet)....only gained 10 lbs with the first child and so far am down 2 pounds and probably won't gain until the end since I am on the diet (the goal is to gain weight but what happened last time is that any and all fat that I did have melted off of me before I started gaining and the baby weighed 7 lb 9 oz and delivered at 40 weeks)....unfortunately when I exercize it doesn't effect my sugar at all...definitely doing both but not seeing the results and my doctor is baffled since this is usually only typical in an overweight person. I am 28 years old.

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answers from Pittsburgh on

I know the thought of having to give yourself injections sounds awful. But it will become old hat in no time! I was GD with my first pregnancy and cried buckets of tears when they told me I had to start insulin. I was terrified of needles. It didn't take long before I was used to it. My wimpy husband refused to learn how to give me an injection. And I just finished a year long cancer treatment where I gave myself injections 3 nights a week. It can be done! And if it's the best for the baby then it's a no-brainer. Good luck to you!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Cincinnati on

I haven't been on the receiving end of insulin injections myself but growing up both of my sisters had type 1 diabetes and learned to give themselves shots at a rather young age (under 10).

I would say talk to your doctor about the insulin injections. They will teach you how to give them to yourself and should work with you until you are comfortable doing so. It isn't fun but it also isn't something to be scared of. Roughly 8% of the US population is diabetic so literally millions of people give themselves insulin injections every day and so can you!

best of luck!!!

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answers from Dallas on

Why can't it be controlled by your diet? Is there some reason you just can't eat a diet that won't cause the spikes and bottoming out? Is something else going on? Have you asked your doctor about talking to a dietian and seeing if changing your meals would help? Some foods are triggers that aren't as obvious - getting in a diabetic diet should be able to help?

In the end though, I think you should do what your doctor recommends. Gestational diabetes is no joke to ignore (which I am sure you know) -- It's hard on your body and unchecked you can seriously harm your baby. I'm sure if its best for your baby you can get used to the needle idea. We're stronger then we think :)



answers from Philadelphia on

I had gestational diabetes where my blood sugars were on the high side. I am surprised you were not referred to a perineonatologist. I think that is how you spell it. I went to a dietician and followed the diet she gave me. I actually lost about 10 pounds while I was pregnant and yes I am overweight. I kept my blood sugars under control with diet and exercise. I was in good shape when I delivered my son. I never had to go on insulin. I had to test my sugars four times a day but I did well. Age and race are also a factor with the gestational diabetes. good luck. remember diet and exercise are the key to keeping the blood sugars under control. If it does not work then you will have to do the insulin. I would try the diet and exercise first.



answers from St. Cloud on

Hi C.! I recommend getting a referral to an endocrinologist and diabetes nurse educator. Your doctor may be right about doing insulin.
I don't know much about gestational diabetes, but my husband and both of my kids all have type 1 diabetes and I can tell you that a blood sugar of 37 is so dangerous!

Gestational diabetes is not only typical of overweight people. It is possible for women of all sizes. Don't be discouraged! People often think that we just have to follow a certain formula and everything will be okay. But, everyone's body is different so you have to work a little harder to find what works for you.

Hang in there! Oh, and if you do need to go to insulin, ask about short needle syringes. My kids use them and the needles are tiny. We also use a numbing spray called "Pain Ease" by the Gebaur company. It's available through prescription.

Good luck and congrats on your pregnancy!



answers from Charlotte on

Don't mess around with this, C.. You may need to get up in the middle of the night to eat. I don't mean to scare you, but a friend of mine's husband died in his hotel room during a business trip because he went into a diabetic coma in the middle of the night and never woke up. If you are having low sugar levels in the morning, you really need to just set the alarm and eat something.

Is not gaining weight you and your doctor's goal? If you aren't overweight, you need to gain weight for the baby. Eating right to manage your sugar levels doesn't necessarily mean not gaining weight. Perhaps your GYN isn't the best doctor to be working with as far as your diet is concerned. Ask for a referral to a specialist who can help with this problem, including a dietician who works with pregnant women with diabetes.

Best of luck to you,



answers from Columbus on

Sometimes with gestational diabetes diet and exercise just doesn't cut it. I had it with both my pregnancies. My friend had it with her first pregnancy and followed her diet to a tee also. I was able to controll mine with diet and exercise and she unfortunately need insulin. When it came up with my first one my doctor sent me to the nutritionist. My visit to the doctor show a 5 lbs weight loss and my doc. demanded to see the diet. Even thought I was heavy to begin with the diet the nutritionist recommended was way to restrictive calorie wise for a pregnant woman. The best part was hearing my doctor reprimand the nutristionist's supervisor. I also had problems with low blood sugar in the morning mine were between 20 and 30. I had to have a mini meal at midnight in order to be able to wake up in the morning. If you are loosing weight then the diet may be the issue. Talk to your doctor.



answers from San Francisco on

its my 2nd time around with GD too.... i had to go on insulin during my 1st pregnancy, but only once a day. The number I couldn't control was the one in the morning before breakfast. But I was on the higher side, whereas you are on the lower. Thus, I did the insulin injection once a day (at nite before bed)

just wanted to say that I was nervous about giving myself insulin shots too, but it actually wasn't a big deal at all. The fear of it is worse than the act of it. The needles are much thinner than the ones you use to prick your finger with, so you barely even feel it if you do it right. I was told to do it on my side, where generally theres more fat, so it doesn't hurt so much. I found that if i just did it really quickly and didnt look when I quickly 'jabbed' it in, I didn't even feel it at all.

However, if you do find yourself too scared to do it, a snack in the middle of the night isn't the worse thing in the world...

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