Posted on

Remember: it’s not just you…


This week I had a young patient in my clinic, 25 years old, pregnant and with diabetes. I remembered her from a few years ago when we were constantly called to the hospital to see her when she was admitted for high blood sugars, high blood pressure and all sorts of pregnancy problems. She was younger then, but I still did not excuse her reluctance to follow recommendations for her blood sugar control. It had been a terrible time, but thankfully her son was born healthy, then she disappeared from follow-up.{{more}}

Here she was again, three years later. We had received a call from her general doctor asking us to see her because she was pregnant again.

After 15 minutes talking to this young woman, all I could do was shake my head in frustration and hope she would be okay, and that her baby would be okay. Why was I so frustrated?

She had not been taking ANY medication for her blood sugars before she became pregnant again. She has diabetes outside of pregnancy, so she should have been taking medicine. In addition to letting these high blood sugars do incredible damage to her system, she got pregnant, something ALL of her doctors had advised her NOT to do because her sugars were too high. How high? Her A1C was 12.6 per cent, meaning her average blood sugar was over 300.

She thankfully did start taking some medication as soon as she found out she was pregnant, but here she was in my clinic arguing with me that her blood sugars did not need to be less than 140 (which by the way is the well accepted target for all pregnant women in terms of the highest their blood sugars should be after eating.) She argued that she felt best when her sugars were between 140 and 180, and that was her target. I kept reminding her that she was pregnant, and this was not only about how she felt, but the health of the baby. It was like talking to a wall — she was not hearing any of it. I got the impression that she was concerned only with how she felt and not at all concerned about being the healthiest she could be for her developing baby.

Are you this person? Do you realize that when you stop caring for your body properly that it impacts not only you but many people around you? This woman was essentially DIRECTLY allowing harm to come to her baby by not trying to get her blood sugars as best as they could be. Even if you are not pregnant, think about who else could be harmed if you do not take care of yourself – what happens if you fall sick? Pass out? Have a heart attack? What then and who does it affect?

We are all connected in this life. If, for whatever reason you don’t think it is important to take care of yourself, then at least think about the people you love, and how this would affect them.

Until next week, stay safe and healthy VIncies for yourself and those around you.

Anita Ramsetty, MD

Medical Director Endocrine Care Group

Tel: 843-798-4227