Diabetes: treatment during pregnancy

Paula Russell, Principal Pharmacist, Regional Drug and Therapeutics Centre (Newcastle Upon Tyne)Published

Signposting evidence-based information on the treatment of diabetes in pregnancy

Condition management

It is important to complete an individual risk assessment for your patient and to apply the principles of prescribing during pregnancy when looking at the available information and making treatment decisions. Check to see if a risk assessment has already been completed by the specialist team.

Untreated or inadequately treated diabetes can have adverse effects on the mother and therefore on the foetus.

NICE guideline [NG3] Diabetes in pregnancy: management from preconception to the postnatal period provides comprehensive guidance on overall condition management. This guideline includes recommendations on:

You should check if there is local guidance for you to use in your area.

Pregnancy outcome information

UK Teratology Information Service (UKTIS) provides overviews on diabetes and the use of insulin and on the use of antidiabetics in pregnancy.

More detailed information on pregnancy outcomes for specific medicines including metformin and glibenclamide is also available.

Patient information

Each of the UKTIS summaries has corresponding Best Use of Medicine in Pregnancy (BUMPS) patient information.

The Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RCOG) provide information about gestational diabetes.

NHS Medicines A-Z provides information on diabetes and pregnancy and also a summary statement on the use in pregnancy of specific antidiabetic medicines.

The NHS.uk pregnancy information provides patient information on conditions in pregnancy including diabetes and pregnancy

The Medicines A-Z has a summary statement on the use in pregnancy of the common antidiabetic medicines.


More from safety in pregnancy

All our training and guidance to help decision making about the use of medicines in pregnancy