Sunday, 3 January 2016

What happens at the Glucose Tolerance Test?

In my 28 week update I mentioned that I had my GTT. Lots of people ask what happens at the Glucose Tolerance Test so I thought I would write a post about it.

First up, what is the GTT?
A GTT test is a blood test that's done after a period of not eating. You'll be told how long not to eat for before the test (it's often overnight). You'll then be asked to have a glucose drink and take another blood test two hours later.(NHS) 
In pregnancy the test is offered to women considered high risk of developing gestational diabetes.
Glucose tolerance test

Your hospital will ask you to fast from the night before your test, mine say from 11.30pm though you are allowed sips of water. Other hospitals seem to have different rules on this so make sure you ask or that it is written on your letter. Due to this fasting most people will have their tests early in the day(mine started at 8.40am).

I was called into a room with a nurse who checked my details, took some blood (she took my 28 week bloods at the same time) and then gave me a plastic cup containing the dreaded drink. I will be honest I tend to drink water or tea so the drink to me is very sweet and pretty vile tasting, some say it is like Lucozade and drinking it on an empty stomach did make me feel a little sick.
Once drunk it is into the waiting room for the 2 hour wait. My hospital allow sips of water and toilet trips in this time but you must not go off for a walk and if you are sick you need to let them know as the test will be cancelled.
Once the wait is over I headed off with the nurse again and had some more blood taken and then i was done and could go home. The nurse advised that if my results were a concern they would contact me within a day or two and if there were no concerns I wouldn't hear anything(thankfully the case for me).

Top Tips

  • Take a book, magazine or something else to do, 2 hours feels like a very long time!
  • Take a bottle of cold water; either for sips during the test if allowed or for afterwards. Our hospital is pretty warm so a cold drink is so welcome.
  • Take a snack for after the test. I find cereal bars are perfect for this. 
  • Try not to worry! It definitely sounds worse than it is!

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