When you feel that your body is showing signs and symptoms which suggest a deviation from the normal blood sugar range, there are various tests that the doctors suggest. One such test is the Oral Glucose Tolerance Test or the OGTT. In this article, we shall analyze and understand more about this test. So, come and join in for the article “What is Oral Glucose Tolerance Test?”
Table of Contents
What is Oral Glucose Tolerance Test and Why is the Test Done?
The test is something that helps to measure and understand the ability of our body to utilize glucose which, as we know, is the main source of our body’s energy.
The reasons why the test is done are as follows:
- The test is mainly done to see if you are suffering from diabetes or prediabetes.
- It is also used to check pregnant women and analyze whether or not they suffer from gestational diabetes.
- The test helps in checking the amount of insulin resistance your body has
- Finally, the test helps to diagnose reactive hypoglycemia
Preparation for the Test
After you have decided to take the test, you need to prepare yourself for the same by taking a few simple steps as mentioned below:
- At least 3 days just before the day of the test, you need to eat a balanced diet comprising around 150 grams of carbohydrates per day.
- Stop smoking, drinking, vigorous exercise around 8 hours just before you give your blood sample for the test. Avoid eating too for at least 8 hours before the blood sample is taken
- You will need to reveal all the medicines and drugs that you might be taking at the time of the test.
How is the Test Performed?
The test starts after taking your blood sample and checking the same for the level of blood glucose or blood sugar. This part is also known as the fasting glucose test.
Then, depending on the type of diabetes that you are being tested for, the following procedures will be performed.
If You Are Being Tested for Either Type 1 or Type 2 Diabetes
After having measured your fasting glucose level, you will be asked to take in around 8 ounces of a glucose solution which usually contains around 75 grams of sugar. A couple of hours after that, your blood sample will be taken once again.
If You Are Being Tested for Gestational Diabetes
Like above, the testing for gestational diabetes is also done. However, in this case, the second blood sample is taken not only after two hours but also after an hour’s mark.
There is another testing that is also done. After the fasting glucose test, you are given a solution which has around 50 grams of glucose in it. After an hour, your blood sample is taken once again. Post this, you are required to drink a glucose solution comprising 100 grams of sugar and a three- hour test is again taken and you are asked for your blood samples after every one-hour mark, three times.
What Do the Results Tell You?
Depending on the test results, you can tell whether or not the person is suffering from diabetes or pre diabetes. Here are what the results tell you:
If you are normal and not diabetic
- Before test, the fasting blood glucose is less than 6 mmol/L
- After around 2 hours, the level of blood glucose is under 7.8 mmol/L
If you are someone who is suffering from Impaired Glucose Tolerance
- Before test, the fasting blood glucose is somewhere around 6 mmol/L to 7 mmol/L
- After around 2 hours, the level of blood glucose is in the range of 7.9mmol/L to 11 mmol/L
If you are suffering from diabetes
- Before test, the fasting blood glucose is somewhere above 7 mmol/L
- After around 2 hours, the level of blood glucose is above 11 mmol/L
Thus, the test helps you to know your condition. If you are someone who suffers from an impaired glucose, you will be advised by your doctor to adopt a few lifestyle changes pertaining to your diet, physical activity, amongst others. If you have diabetes, medicines, along with the lifestyle changes will generally be recommended.
Risks of a Glucose Tolerance Test
There are no serious risks associated with the test. Since blood is taken, some infection might be caused due to the same. Apart from that, a few people may experience the following as a result of drinking the glucose drink:
- Diarrhea or constipation
- Other types of discomfort in the stomach
- Nausea as well as vomiting
We hope that the above post has been helpful in helping you understand more about the oral glucose tolerance test and how the same can be used to diagnose different types of diabetes in an individual!