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July 6, 2001

Family Planning

Question from Compton, California, USA:

What is the best and fastest way for a woman with type 1 diabetes to have a healthy conception?


One of the key factors to a good outcome for a woman with type 1 diabetes is good (as close to normal as possible) glucose control prior to conception and during the first 10 weeks of the pregnancy to reduce the risk of fetal abnormalities. Maintaining good glucose control during the entire pregnancy will minimize excessive fetal growth. If you are in good health prior to the pregnancy (normal blood pressure, renal function and no vascular disease) then the risk of other complications such as preeclampsia or poor fetal growth.

You will need to have frequent office visits to assess your glucose control and the baby (such as with ultrasound). Let your physician know that you are considering a pregnancy and he/she can give you more specific details and determine if you need a referral to a high-risk specialist.


[Editor’s comment: See Planning a pregnancy , at the Diabetes Monitor, for some additional thoughts.