High blood sugar & your period

I’m kind of new to this group but I’ll throw in my .02 worth. I had my tubes tied over 15 years ago but when I was on birth control pills after the birth of my son I never had periods. That went on for about 10 years. I would have one every once in awhile but if it was one in a year it was a heavy year.

Now that I have been off birth control for so long I have periods but I’ve never been very regular. But they are getting heavier the older I get so my gyn recommended the Nuva ring. It is supposed to be a low dose ring that you change out once a month and if you change it and dont skip a week you stop your period from occuring.

I would have used it but like birth control pills (I did try those again a few years back) it made me nausiated. I must just have a sensitive stomach because I had morning sickness from the time I was 2 or 2 1/2 months pregnant until my son was born. And he was only born 2 1/2 weeks early. I spent more time in the bathroom than anywhere else.

well , i am having my cycle this moment,the day before my sugars were low
now its 466 and ketones too,i didnt have any regular period the same case as you
i dont know about birth controls-sorry!

Hi Stacey,

Your story is actually fairly common. I’m trying to figure out if the days that I struggle with highs are somehow coordinated with my cycle.

I am not a medical professional-- and you should talk to you doctor before changing insulin doses (OK, disclaimer over), but it might be that you need more insulin between ovulation and your period. You could try increasing your long acting insulin after ovulation.

Of course this is only possible if your cycle is very regular and you can know in advance when you will ovulate.

OKAY- I finally found an “expert” that knows about this.

I went to meet with the Medtronic diabetes educator for the Chicago suburbs- her name is Sue Chapman, in case any of you have met her.

What she recommended is basically what I’ve done:
Three basal patterns.
Start with a “standard” pattern.
Have a “low” pattern that’s 20% lower for the beginning of your cycle, until whenever it is that you go back to "standard."
Then, have a “high” pattern that’s 20% higher than “standard” for when you ovulate and if you go higher during PMS.
Personally, I have found that my low and high patterns are more like 30% higher and lower, but that’s just been through trial and error.

ALSO, when you are fighting resistant highs due to ovulation or PMS, since you are ALSO more insulin resistant, your correction bolus and insulin:carb ratios will need to be adjusted. She suggested increasing those by 20%, also, but you may find you need more.

I also recommend this: if you chart your glucose values, instead of charting by the month or just whenever you run out of room on your old chart, chart by the CYCLE, and note when you’re having a day of can’t knock-it-down highs or floor-dropping-out lows. If you’re really into it, chart your total insulin for the day, too. And if you’re REALLY into it, put it into an Excel line graph and you’ll probably notice a pattern in your insulin intake.

I started doing this, and I discovered something.
I ovulate around the 10th day, and I was having highs then, which I expected.
What I didn’t realize until charting that way and taking notes is that for three consecutive months, I also have had a day of crazy, inexplicable highs on the 18th day of my 25- day cycle. Why this particular day is significant, I have no idea. In retrospect, I’m sure I’ve had this happen many times before, because I knwo I’ve been up half the night chasing highs down many times before and feeling frustrated. However, since I realized that there was a pattern, this cycle when I was 200 for no reason, instead of being high for half of the day trying to chase it, I immediately increased to a 30% higher basal, increased my correction bolus and meal boluses by about 50%, and VOILA, I kept testing around 100 for the rest of the day. The next morning I was low, so I went back to standard and the rest was fine.


I have also struggled with this and can see my blood sugars go up every month about a week or two before my cycle. Now that I am on a pump my doctor wants to create a temp basal setting just for my pre-period week(s).

My doctor also has me on Yaz for my PCOS. I make multiple ovarian cysts every month and they are very painful and could and have needed surgery. I tried the seasonale pill and it did not work for me.

Sorry you go through the painful cysts every month…sheeesh…always a party, eh?
I went on the pump fairly recently and have a temp basal called “horms.” I am entering menopause…hormones are like Mr Toads Wild Ride. I just created an even more potent “horms 2.” When we are too low in the AM, we know it’s time to switch back

That’s what I started doing a couple of years ago - I set three basals. I use my high basal for when I ovulate or when I’m sick with higher than usual bgls. I use my low basal for the second my period starts or when I exercise, then I have my normal rate for that one week or so per month when I’m “normal”, lol.

Look into getting the NuvaRing:
That’s if you are dead set on getting on birth control. I had a horrible, horrible experience when I finally tried taking birth control pills a few years ago. The hormones that were released made my blood sugars sky-rocket, and if I didn’t take the pill at exactly the same time every day, my blood sugars went even worse. The last option I tried was the NuvaRing, and it was much better than taking the pill. I finally went off of birth control, and never plan on using it again.

In regards to the monthly woes: I still struggle with the wacky highs every month. I have a different basal rate programmed into my pump, and I still have problems. It’s hard for me to pin point when exactly I need to start increasing my basal as well as my bolus amounts (I’ve found I have to up both). I get extra tired and emotional as well. I used to never have any PMS issues, and it seems to be getting worse as I get older- no fair! I’ve decided that the next go round I’m going to really watch and track everything and see if I can’t find some sort of pattern that I’m not noticing through my usual observation. I think maybe I am so used to certain things that I don’t notice it. My boyfriend has been able to spot some patterns that I miss because I’m so used to dealing with fluctuating blood sugars. That made me think about trying to write everything down, etc to see if I can figure out if I might be able to finer tune my basal rate, etc. I don’t know what I’ll do if this doesn’t work. I struggle with this every month, and I check my blood sugar ALL the time, make adjustments with my pump as needed, etc. I’m at my wits end for how to better control the hormonal/blood sugar mess that I become almost every month(what’s with those random, occasional months where everything is perfect, by the way?).

Have you found a good chart/record keeper thingy to use? The ones I get are frequently too tiny to be of any use. I am getting ready to do what you mentioned above. I’ve exhausted all my other options(that I know of). I’ve tried the general three basal rate option… I think that will work- but I need to get my percentage of increase/decrease better tuned. I love the Excel idea. I’ve often wanted to do that. I wish that Freestyle hadn’t done away with the glucometer that was also a PDA. I think it was a palm pilot, or something, with an attachment to check your blood sugar. I always thought I’d use that more because you could electronically move your data and manage it easier. It also had something similar to the Calorie King book in it. I know that a lot of the new glucometers have similar things now, but most of the software that comes with them is so old fashioned. I want to be able to check my blood sugar, enter in my insulin amounts, etc and notes in an easy way- like the iPhone or something. Does anyone know of any meters that are super awesome like that? Gees, my blood sugar is low. Sorry for being a little rambly.

Hey Hawley,

I’m at my wit’s end, too.

I also was trying to find a pattern.

I’ve tracked my daily insulin needs for four months now, (five cycles) based on cycle day.
I took total insulin, minus (carbs/ 15) to give me total basal plus corrections. Of course, it isn’t perfect since the carb:insulin ratio isn’t always 1:15, but it gave me a place to start.


Here’s what I found:
There’s a pattern, (YAY!) but it’s a pain in the ■■■. (Boo!)

Days: Approx. Basal needed
01-02: 18 (lowest)
03-04: 21 (why a small peak at day 3, I have no idea.)
05-06: 18
07-10: 21 (I ovulate around day 10.)
11-14: 19
15: 21
16-17: 26 (and MUCH higher boluses) (one of those days is a "crazy high " day)
18-19: 23
20-26: 22

So, try fitting that into three bolus patterns. No wonder when I was trying to use two or three boluses, I’d be so happy that I’d mike fine adjustments and have perfect blood sugar for a day, and then WHAM, that didn’t work anymore.

I’m just holding out for that artificial pancreas and much quicker acting insulin. :0)

I’m very techno-savvy, so I just wrote down my total insulin used each day and total carbs consumed (from the pump utilities) and then put them into Excel and created graphs to see the patterns. I was happy to see that there WAS a pattern, but unhappy to see how erratic it is.

Sorry- I meant NOT techno-savvy. I love pens and paper. LOL

My period is very irregular… but the day or 2 before I start I am like 350… then once it starts I am back to 100… its wild…

Hi! I just started taking the pill because of the same symptoms you are having. I didn’t want to but I have such a hard time controlling my bs and dealing with pms. I have been taking for three weeks microgestin as it is better, according to my doctor for PWD. I’m not sure about how good it is for my diabetes but I do know that I haven’t had the increase of basal that I usually have a week before. Though the downside is it makes me bloated and tired. It has raised my blood pressure which was a little high to begin with, but overall it’ not that bad. I think having PMS is alot worse! Oh and I have the option of skipping my period which I love!

Good luck!


yes! and chills and nausea, too.

Hello, I see that this is a very old discussion, but I am really happy that it still exists. I have the same problems!!! Approx 5-7 days before my period I get Bef Breakfast highs…Like anything between 8.0-10.0 (144-180 in US terms), which is high for somebody like myself as I do target below 6.0 (108) for the mornings.

Finally after exchanging emails with my diabetic nurse she told me to up my Basal (Lantus) by 1 unit (I am on 11 units in total) and if that does not work to try to even up it by 2 or 3 units until I get my target rate.

Also like most of you, the day before my period starts I plummet back to the lower range of what I would like to be for the before breakfast…around 4.0 (72) area.

I did not know that there could be highs during ovaluation as well…and am very happy to read about it here, as I will now also monitor this for myself from now on. On Monday I will see my DSN and will ask her more.

On the pills subject as I am 35+ I have been told that pills are a no no, hence they have recommended the usual barriers!

I just found this discussion and I was wondering the same thing too. My bgs are high when I ovulate, but when I get my period I go low. It’s weird, in fact the numbers are so low that I don’t need my insulin for the first three days of my period. Then they jump back up and I have to take it again.

It’s the progesterone.

Wow, Kelly, that’s very interesting! Are you type 2?

I’m type 1 and I FINALLY have it (somewhat) under control.
I use a “low rate”, about 12% lower than “Normal,” for days 1-6, and also change my carb ratio to 1:17.
Days 7-15 are “normal”.with a high spike on day 7. Carb ratio 1:15.
Days 16 - the end (25 or so) are the “High rate,” about 12% higher than normal. Carb ratio 1;13. Oh, and a Crazy High day on the 16th or 17th, where I increase the “high rate” another 15%, and the carb ratio is about 1:10.

It really annoys me that it has to be this way. But, I guess everything about diabetes is pretty annoying. Glad I figured this out finally, after- what - almost twenty-five years of menstruation. can’t wait to see what fun challenges menopause will bring. :wink:

I have been going through menopause…I THINK I finally had my last period…I am 56!!! For the last few years, despite some irregularity, I was able to anticipate, based on my fasting #'s, and react accordingly. I was having untold numbers of daily hot flashes but as they have suddenly stopped, my basal needs have gone down by 1/3. I have not lost weight, so that’s not it. I actually have gained but I can’t blame it on hormones, or lack of…I started eating more carbs in the last 6 months or so (and more and more as the holidays hit.) It must be the lack of estrogen causing the need for less insulin. I don’t have the cyclical fluctuations anymore, so actually, it has been easier. Good luck to you…one adventure after the other, eh?

Thanks, Elaine! Finaly, the “bright side” of menopause! No fluctuations! YAY! :slight_smile: