Find Information About:

Drugs & Supplements

Get information and reviews on prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and supplements. Search by name or medical condition.

Pill Identifier

Pill Identifier

Having trouble identifying your pills?

Enter the shape, color, or imprint of your prescription or OTC drug. Our pill identification tool will display pictures that you can compare to your pill.

Get Started

My Medicine

Save your medicine, check interactions, sign up for FDA alerts, create family profiles and more.

Get Started

WebMD Health Experts and Community

Talk to health experts and other people like you in WebMD's Communities. It's a safe forum where you can create or participate in support groups and discussions about health topics that interest you.

  • Second Opinion

    Second Opinion

    Read expert perspectives on popular health topics.

  • Community


    Connect with people like you, and get expert guidance on living a healthy life.

Got a health question? Get answers provided by leading organizations, doctors, and experts.

Get Answers

Sign up to receive WebMD's award-winning content delivered to your inbox.

Sign Up

Diabetes Health Center

Select An Article

What Is Gestagenic Diabetes Insipidus?

Font Size

Most commonly known as gestational DI, gestagenic diabetes insipidus is a rare disorder that happens in pregnancy, usually in the third trimester.

This condition can make you so thirsty you drink many glasses of water a day. As a result, you might go to the bathroom more than once or twice an hour. This isn’t a result of pregnancy but of diabetes insipidus, which is sometimes called "water" diabetes. It has symptoms like other forms of the disease, but isn’t related.

Recommended Related to Diabetes

The Daily Diabetes Care Checklist

When you have type 2 diabetes, it's often a juggling act to remember all of your daily tasks. Nora Saul, RD, CDE, a diabetes educator and manager for nutrition services at the Joslin Diabetes Center in Boston, offers this "healthy habits" checklist to guide you through the day. Check your blood sugar levels. Most people with type 2 diabetes need to check their blood sugar, also called glucose, at least once a day. "That's the minimum," Saul says. But the frequency depends on your treatment...

Read the The Daily Diabetes Care Checklist article > >

What Causes It?

It's rare, but sometimes during pregnancy, the placenta can make an enzyme that destroys vasopressin, a hormone that controls how much water you retain. The lack of it causes heavy thirst and frequent urination. Gestagenic DI can also lead to lack of control when you pee and to bedwetting.

In some cases, the disease runs in the family. In others, it's a problem with the way your body controls thirst. And sometimes the cause isn’t known.

What Are the Symptoms?

Most pregnant women make many trips to the bathroom at night due to pressure the growing baby puts on the bladder. But if you go a lot and have an intense thirst, it could be gestagenic diabetes.

Other symptoms include nausea, dizziness, and weakness.

How Is It Diagnosed?

Your doctor will test your urine to see if it’s light and diluted or concentrated and yellow. He may also send your blood out for lab tests.

How Is It Treated?

The doctor may opt not to treat gestagenic DI. If that’s the case, he’ll likely ask you to come to the office a lot. He’ll make sure your body doesn’t retain too much fluid. You'll also need to keep liquids with you so you don't get dehydrated.

You may need to take desmopressin, a man-made form of vasopressin. It usually comes as a nasal spray. This treatment helps control urine. It also stops bedwetting by letting your body to absorb and manage water from your kidneys.

If your body's thirst control is the cause of gestational DI, your doctor will prescribe other treatments.

When Should I Call the Doctor?

See your doctor if you’re pregnant and have all of these symptoms:

  • You make frequent trips to the bathroom, especially at night.
  • You have a heavy thirst.
  • You drink much more than your normal daily amount.

Most cases go away 4 to 6 weeks after you give birth. But it may return with future pregnancies.

WebMD Medical Reference

Reviewed by Michael Dansinger, MD on September 03, 2014
Next Article:

Today on WebMD

Diabetic tools
Symptoms, diagnosis, treatment, and more.
woman flexing muscles
10 strength training exercises.
Blood sugar test
12 practical tips.
Tom Hanks
Stars living with type 1 or type 2.
kenneth fujioka, md
Can Vinegar Treat Diabetes
Middle aged person
Home Healthcare

Prediabetes How to Prevent Type 2 Diabetes
type 2 diabetes
food fitness planner