Unexplained high bg's

Hi everyone,

I'm new to this site. I joined because everytime I try to talk to my doctor, he never seems to have any insight into my pregnancy issues (I guess he's more accustomed to dealing with old people with Type II?). Anyway, I'm 32 and I've been Type I since I was 5. I'm 14 weeks into my second pregnancy and I have a pump. I check my bg's 8-10 times/day and my numbers are usually really good, but a few times a week, I get unexplained really high bg's (in the 300's). The random highs are not a result of a bad pump site, something I've eaten, or anything that can be traced back to a logical explanation. They are just totally out of left field. When it happens, it usually takes 3-4 hours to get my bg back to a normal range (and 2-3 bolus attempts). I don't think there's anything I can do about it or anything I can do to prevent it (I remember having this problem with my first pregnancy as well). Is it just hormonal changes or what? Does anyone else have this issue? Thanks so much!


I had this happen some in the very beginning of my pregnancy also. Not a doctor, but I'm assuming it's hormonal. I remember 1 time I woke up, checked my morning fasting number and it was normal. I had breakfast and bolused correctly. Went outside for a while and when I later checked my blood I was over 500. Tested for ketones and I had a small trace. I called my doctor and asked if I should go in. She told me no, just correct the # asap and drink lots of water. Well, I took a correction dose and checked about 1 hour later and it hadn't came down. Took another correction dose and again checked. Still hadn't came down. Called my doctor again and she said maybe it was the pump site. So of course I changed it and used new insulin and took another correction dose. STILL my blood would not come down. It literally took like 6 or 7 hours to bring my blood down to a normal level, and then wouldn't you know I bottomed out and ended up going to low. I cannot find any logical explanation to why this happened, but it just did. Like I said, maybe just a hormonal thing?? Best advice is to just test, test, test. And whenever you are high, keep hydrated. When in doubt call your doctor.

yep I went through the same thing and still do occasionally at 29 weeks. Is the doctor your using the only one you can deal with? I'd want a doctor that was more knowledgeable and more help.

Thanks for your input, ladies! It's good to know I'm not the only one this is happening to. It must be normal. :-)  As far as talking to my doc or switching to another doc, I don't think that's going to help much. For some reason, I've always had the worst luck with endocrinologists. I've had 5 endos in my 27 years with diabetes and they've all been very unhelpful and in a hurry to get out of the room. They all seem to just be there for the paycheck. The current doctor I'm seeing is more patient and willing to help, but he is about 70 years old and just moved from Egypt, so he doesn't seem to be very experienced with young pregnant women. I live in Charlotte, NC, so you'd think I could find another doctor in a big city like this, but every place I've ever lived only has one practice available. They must take extra college courses that teach them how to run a monopoly on that medical field!  ;-)


Sounds like you're doing a really good job.  Highs will sometimes happen during pregnancy.  If you need to do a correction bolus, do it with a syringe instead of a pump bolus.  It will correct faster.  

You may want to do an A1c to see how you're averaging.  If it's a 5.5 or below then you're still doing fine despite the occasional high.  

Have the highs happened at random times of day?  When I was pregnant my doc suggested I eat the same breakfast each morning, which made a huge difference in my numbers overall.  I picked a wheat english muffin with peanut butter.... little tired of it by the end of my pregnancy, but it was worth it.

When pregnant I also had more problems with the "Chinese restaurant effect" (where a large or high fat meal takes way more insulin that the carb count indicates and takes longer to hit the blood sugar).  So I tried to avoid some foods or only eat baked potatoes or pizza mid-day when I could catch the high more quickly.  

Also, when I started a Moms in Motion exercise class (water aerobics and yoga) my blood sugars were better overall.  It was also cool to meet other expectant moms.  

If you haven't gotten it, I'd also recommend the book "Balancing Pregnancy with Pre-Existing Diabetes: Healthy Mom, Healthy Baby" by Cheryl Alkon.  She's type 1 and the book has better type 1 information than most diabetic pregnancy books.


Hi Jenna,

I get my A1C checked every three months, and they're always great. It's just frustrating dealing with random highs (and lots of random lows, too!). I worry that the highs are harming the baby, and they make me feel physically bad for a few hours. Despite yoga, lifting weights, and walking, I've been dealing with extreme fatigue during this pregnancy and the blood sugar roller coaster intensifies it. My endo always tells me I'm doing a good job, but the OBGYN's always freak out if my bg is over 100. One of the doctors I saw during my last pregnancy called a 202 bg "atrocious" in a very accusatory tone. I wanted to sock her in the face and ask her if she could do a better job!  ;-)  


It always shocks me how little non-endocrinologists sometimes know about type 1 diabetes.  

You reminded me of when my regular OBGYN was out and I met with another doctor in his office. She read my file said, "You have very brittle diabetes."  I was confused because I had a 5.1 A1c with few lows and a super healthy pregnancy.  When I asked her to define what she meant by that she said it was because I'd had diabetes so long.  I was mad and told her she should be ashamed to give me diabetes advice when she didn't know what she was taking about.  I wanted to sock her in the face too.  

Your baby will be totally fine.  Diabetics were able to have healthy pregnancies before pumps and glucose meters existed.  Women who are starving and severely malnourished have babies.  An occasional high or low isn't ideal, but I think the fact that your blood sugars are good most of the time is more significant.  

You're just past the first trimester, so the fatigue is pretty normal.  Be extra good to yourself and make sure your husband and other family members help you to get lots of extra sleep.  Congratulations on your pregnancy.  Don't let uninformed or unrealistic doctors get to you.  Just do your best and have peace that everything will be okay.


LOL gotta love uneducated docs and nurses... I once had an ER nurse tell me when I was in for High bg when I was younger because I didn't know my pump site had come out under the patch, that the reason I was sick was because I was taking the wrong insulin and should be taking Regular (R) in my pump! I tried to explain to her that wasn't done and she yelled at me! My maternal and fetal med specialist who keeps trying to take over my diabetic care from my endo told me that a 156 was horrible and anything over 140 was essentially choking my baby to death... until I saw my educator I was a nervous MESS (he is now having to go through training with her to deal with diabetic patients better, haha). i feel so bad that you have had bad luck with endos, my luck has been awesome. I've only had three, the first one was okay... and two of them have been type 1 diabetics themselves and that in my opinion has made a world of difference! I feel so much better letting someone who knows exactly what I'm going through first hand take care of me.

"Brittle," hunh? She sounds like someone who should stick to what she knows!  :-)


The maternal and fetal medicine doc that told you that would have made me FURIOUS! What an idiot. I'm glad you've had good experiences with endos. I wish I could find a good one!

I've had T1 for 56 years.  My diabetes was always called brittle.  I don't think that is a comment on how you are doing.  I am soooooo glad I had my kids before I knew all the troubles there could be.  They are 31 and 33.  Delivered naturally.  No special docs.  Who knows what my A1c was???  Girls, don't stress.

:) I love hearing from posters like you Rochelle, makes me feel much better about life :D Steel Magnolias I think scared the hell out of so many of us and our families that we just can't help but being terrifried, due to that movie my grandma and mom made me promise them at the age of seven that I would not have my own children! (obviously i listened :-P) My grandma was FURIOUS at me when she found out I was pregnant but has since gotten over it haha.