Pregnant December or January?

QUESTION

Dear Midwife,
I just found out I was pregnant 2 weeks after being diagnosed with Diabetes.

I remember having a slight period in December (not sure what the exact date was, but it's usually around the 13th) and I didn't get my January period. My husband and I had been trying to have a baby, so we were excited with the news.

However, at my first prenatal appointment they explained to me that gestational diabetes leads to a large baby. They told me I was 9 weeks, 3 days at my appointment based on the size of the baby on the ultrasound.

My husband and I had unprotected sex the day I was scheduled to get my January period. I took a HPT that Friday and learned I was pregnant, then had it confirmed by my Dr's office.

I'm worried that my baby may not really be the age I was given (which would now be 10 wks, 5 days) because of my diabetes. What are the chances that I could have gotten pregnant in January and not December?

Please help, I'm really worried.

ANSWER

I wish you had given me the date of the 9w3d ultrasound, but if it was about Feb. 17th, then you got pregnant in December. I figured from December 13 as your last period. If you had a positive pregnancy test January 16, then that also says you conceived in December.

All babies start out the same size, two cells big. By the end of pregnancy, some are 5 pounds and some are 10, so the closer to the beginning you do the ultrasound, the more accurate the dating. At 9w3d, the ultrasound due date could be off by 3-4 days, but with a good ultrasonographer, it's probably not off by as much as a week.

As for the diabetes, there is no reason for you to have a big baby if you just stick to your diet (and take your medication, if prescribed). You can do what you need to for this short time to protect your own health and your baby's health, right?

-- Cynthia, CNM. PhD.

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Cynthia Flynn

Cynthia Flynn, CNM. PhD, is the General Director of the Family Health and Birth Center which provides prenatal, birth, postnatal, gynecological and primary health care to underserved women and their families in Washington, D.C. Recently Cynthia served as Associate Professor of Nursing at Seattle University. There she not only taught, but remained in full scope clinical midwifery practice at Valley Medical Center where she cared for pregnant and birthing women, and practices well-woman gynecology, family planning, and treatment of sexually transmitted diseases.

Cynthia founded Columbia Women's Clinic and Birth Center, where she took care of pregnant women and infants up to two weeks of age and attended both birth center and hospital births. Before Cynthia earned her CNM, she worked as a registered nurse in labor and delivery and postpartum and is a certified Doula and Doula trainer.