Type 1 Diabetes and Pregnancy

Pregnancy Diabetes Sonny

If you are living with Type 1 Diabetes, your pregnancy and birth will need additional care to ensure both you and your baby are well looked after.

Thank you to my patient Emma, for sharing her pregnancy and birth story for others to read.

Emma’s Story

My pregnancy with Sonny was a wild ride, just like his birth. 

We returned to see Dr. Peter England at St Vincent’s Private Hospital after our first pregnancy and birth with Daisy in 2018, a much anticipated IVF baby and a now 3.5 year old. 

Sonny was a natural conception and our rainbow baby after a miscarriage during Melbourne’s lockdown 2.0 in 2020. 

As someone living with type 1 diabetes, I prefer to seek out the care of a team of private professionals for my pregnancies including an obstetrician, endocrinologist and diabetes educator.

Due mainly to placental hormones, hypoglycaemic events are common in the first trimester while insulin resistance hits hard during the third.

Unfortunately I ended up with very high ketones around week 34 and was quite unwell.

Having Type 1 Diabetes, one of the possible complications is high ketones, usually in the third trimester, when the baby is growing faster. I ended up with very high ketones around week 34 and was quite unwell. This required continuous careful management of my insulin levels.

Shortly afterwards my amniotic fluid index (AFI) became high, which is a sign that the baby isn’t coping very well. Bub also continued to grow a little large while hypertension creeped in. We decided to go with an induction at 38+1. 

We arrived at the hospital early in the morning for my waters to be broken. The delivery suite was like a scene from Noah’s Ark and fluid continued to flow! Antibiotics were given for GBS and a drip of syntocin was started a couple of hours later.

Quickly the surges were very uncomfortable so I tried the TENS machine to help provide relief and followed this with gas and air to help manage the labour pains.

My labour with Daisy had been relatively quick for a first baby, so by early afternoon when there was no sign of this baby I was quite surprised. It wasn’t until after 4.30pm that I was allowed to start pushing (I had already been involuntary pushing…just try and get a labouring woman to stop that urge…wowsers).

It turns out that little Sonny was posterior and wasn’t turning. Without an epidural, turning with forceps wasn’t an option so a ventouse was used to assist and Sonny was delivered at 4.47pm. We were all surprised by the prolonged second stage and I was floored by the pain of stacked surges and intense pushing phase.

Type 1 Diabetes Pregnancy

Antenatally expressed colostrum was given to Sonny post birth to maintain good blood sugar levels and he’s a trooper to have transitioned earth side so well. 

We are absolutely delighted and so very grateful to have little (or not so little) Sonny join our family and thank Dr Peter England, the midwives, and everyone who came along for the ride. 

Sonny George Wallace-Smith, Born November 21, 4.145kg

Diabetes Pregnancy Type

Learn more about Diabetes and Pregnancy.

Pregnancy Diabetes Sonny