Twinks Gets Fit...

Thursday, December 17, 2009

The lowdown on the glucose tolerance test

This is a test that makes pregnant women cringe. It's to check for gestational diabetes, which affects about 8% of pregnant women. Complications of having GD include needing to modify diet, having high birth weight babies, and needing to deliver early. If blood sugar cannot be regulated, insulin injections are required, same as for regular diabetes. Nothing any pregnant woman wants to deal with when there are so many other things to get done and worry about during the last trimester.

I've been dreading this test, particularly since my last regular appointment when Dr. Doan handed me a bottle of the "fruit punch" variety. I had read up on the test and thought I'd have a choice at least, but it was this bright red concoction or nothing. I would have preferred nothing, but seeing as that was not an option, I've glared at the bottle on the top shelf of the fridge for weeks. Yesterday it accompanied me to work so I could drink it exactly an hour before having my appointment and getting my blood drawn.

Honestly, I expected a really nasty drink. I even stuck the bottle in the freezer to attempt to create a slushy variation, which somehow seemed more appealing. Yeah, didn't work. The mutant drink wouldn't freeze. It was however cold, so I poured it into my plastic cup and braced myself. They require you to drink it within 5 minutes.

First taste and I decided it wasn't so bad. It was very much like what I imagine Kool-Aid is like. (I'm not a big fruit punch fan.) I guzzled it down fairly quickly and got ready to head out. That's when the sugar rush hit (and not in a good way). My head felt fuzzy and started to hurt. My ears started to get warm, which oddly enough usually only happens when I drink alcohol. En route to the appointment, I was plotting a quick dash after my appointment to get a value menu burger to absorb some of the sugar and make me feel better. Fortunately, over the course of the required hour, the unpleasantness eased up. My head started to feel better by the time it was time for my blood draw.

I walked back to the lab, as instructed, exactly one hour after consuming the sugar-infused beverage. No one was there. I stood there a minute or two and was about to check back with the front desk to get a 20 on the techs when one came up the hallway, smiled and said she'd be right there. Perfect. I took a seat on the big lab throne and waited. Enter different tech. Non-smiling and rather cranky looking lab tech who seemed annoyed that I was there. She shoved the short form to complete for the glucose test toward me, almost slammed the vials she would need to fill on the counter, and had a personal vendetta against the rubber band she wrapped around my arm. The other tech popped back in to do my test and was her friendly self. I wanted to whimper for her to rescue me from cranky lab tech, but then I realized cranky lab tech was reaching for the needle and moving purposefully toward me so I quickly diverted my eyes to the wall of cute baby photos.

The blood draw wasn't that bad. It honestly never is. I just don't like seeing that needle go in. (Plus I had a really bad blood draw when I had a kidney infection at age 13--the tech used a needle the size of a tree trunk and upon realizing she used too big of a needle, she decided to draw again from my other arm. She ended up sticking me several times and my arms looked like I had a drug addiction in my 8th grade graduation photos.) Anyways, so she wrapped my arm with gauze, I rolled down my sleeve and headed back to the waiting room to wait for my visit with Dr. Doan. It was later when I got home and was going to remove the gauze that I realized she used the sticky gauze. The gauze that glues itself to arm hair. The gauze that is unpenetratable by your run of the mill household scissors. I admit it, I may have called her a name at that point, as I realized I would have to rip off the sticky gauze and then proceed to slide it off my arm, trying to avoid having it cling to any other hair.

I should hear back on the results by next week, which freely allows me to possibly indulge in Fuddruckers this weekend and definitely have some yummy appetizers at my brother and sister in law's holiday party on Saturday night. Hopefully I pass. I don't want to deal with the 3 hour test, which involves a change in diet for a few days before the test, then fasting, then the test. I could not imagine the headache if I had to drink that stuff on an empty stomach.

So that's it. Not horrible, but not pleasant either.

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