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Question:

I have a 16 year old girldfriend with type I diabetes. We have been sexually active for a while now and have had to worry about her getting pregnant. I'd like to know about the effects on her becoming pregnant and if she could take the "pill" or not. Also I need to know if there are any doctors she can see that will keep her files confidential.

Answer:

Pregnancy in a 16-year old with diabetes is a very expensive, and very preventable, situation. You shouldn't run any risks of your girlfriend getting into an unwanted pregnancy, and I'd strongly recommend that you and your girlfriend should promptly:

  1. Learn more about diabetes and family planning (see Family Planning for young women with diabetes for example).
  2. Start using condoms immediately. (They would also be helpful to prevent the spread of STD's.)
  3. If you're very worried about confidentiality, I'd suggest that your girlfriend and you visit Planned Parenthood for their assistance.
  4. Her gynecologist or other doctor, or Planned Parenthood, will probably prescribe birth control pills or Norplant. (Yes, these hormonal therapies do have a mild effect on elevating blood sugar levels, but they're the best way, short of abstinence, to prevent a pregnancy in this situation.)

WWQ

Additional Comment by Dr. Lebinger

It is very important for women with diabetes to have their blood sugars under the best control possible for at least 3 months before getting pregnant to avoid an increased risk of birth defects in the children.

Women with diabetes can have healthy babies if they plan ahead and work very hard before and during the pregnancy to keep their blood sugars under control.

TGL

Original posting 7 Dec 96
Additional comment added 11 Dec 96


                 
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Last Updated: Tuesday April 06, 2010 15:08:52
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