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Could use some advice for a friend in BAD shape!!!

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Old 10-02-2008, 09:57 PM   #1
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lilbit1973 HB User
Could use some advice for a friend in BAD shape!!!

Hey guys!
Need some help for a friend of mine who is newly diagnosed. Her and I have been emailing this evening and I will just post her email and let you read it. Her last A1C was 9.2 and her doc wants to "explore other avenues" before putting her on insulin. These are her emails to me:

When asked what her sugars were running:
sugars 190--380 usually in the 300's last A1c was 9.2

When asked what she is on:
I have been eating a lot of protine as the nutritionist told me to do that. I also eat a lot of broccoli. The hardest thing was to give up soda. Wow what I wouldn't give for a Mt. Dew now. I can't drink diet due to migraines. I also have to be careful because I have RA and and a few other issues. It is complicated. I think I am learning. I go to the classes and see an endocronologist every 2 weeks. When I was there last week my sugar was 381. He put me on Byetta but it makes me really sick. I also have gastroitus and other stomach problems. The diabeties has affected my eyesight. (I can't drive now. ) my kidneys and my liver. I have also have gotten high choloserol and an enlarged heart since I was diagnosed. They are saying it is tearing up my body due to my compromised immune system.

When asked about her doctor: (and this one scares me with her eyesight)
Yeah I was going to Dr. (name deleted) at the Joslin Diabetes clinic but all they wanted to talk about was crime scene and my supervisor (name deleted) (who is a former patient of them.... the girls there drool over him) I got no where with them. Now I am seeing Dr. (name deleted). I have asked him every visit about insulin. He keeps saying we are going to try other avenues first. I went to the eye doc and he said I have early diabetic onset retenopothy but if the sugars come down my eyes should go back to normal. Although he said that since the levels have been this high since June 1 ( or longer we don't know) some damage is perminant. I also have blood clots in my eyes which he said is common with diabetes and those will definately go away. It is funny sometimes they move around in my eye and I can see them like an eclipse. I am constantly doing research. I have made my own research book. I am learning more everyday. It helps to talk to people like you who are going through it or have beat it. I don't hear that often. I got a grant from St. Anthony's hospital for the education and support groups. I still need to quit smoking, but that will be in the coming months. The docs even said not to shock my body too much right now. When I tried last month I had major anxiety attacks. I will conqure that too in time.

Can anyone give me some advice to help this poor girl? She is only 29!
Thanks all!

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Old 10-03-2008, 05:20 AM   #2
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Canada
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itotito HB User
Re: Could use some advice for a friend in BAD shape!!!

If her doctors are hestitating to give insulin and prescribing Byetta, i'm guessing it's because they think she is insulin resistant, big time. If she is that insulin resistant at 29, i'm also guessing she may be overweight.

I can tell you that if it's the case and she can drop weight dramatically, it makes a HUGE difference. HUGE, HUGE. I went from 234 fasting to normal after dropping my first 50 pounds. People do not realize to what extent the excess weight impacts insulin resistance.

Weight loss is so hard. It takes a long time and it isn't fun. When I was first diagnosed at over 230 lbs, the doctor told me I probably had kidney damage. This scared the living daylights out of me and was enough to overcome any pain associated with hunger. I turned out having no damage and to this day I think he did that to scare me into weight loss.

An acquaitance who weighed over 350 had it stomach shrunk (or whatever the formal procedure is) and his diabetes went away after losing over 100lbs.

A lady friend of mine, had vision problems. This is how they disagnosed she was T1. But when she got her sugars under control it came back 100%

All this to say...DO NOT GIVE UP HOPE.....the body is an mazing machine and can heal itself, sometimes not back to perfection, but definitely to a point where you can live well with it.

PS : I'm assuming she's off the mt dew. while it may be hard, one of those is like doing an OGTT. they are brutal.

Old 10-03-2008, 11:10 AM   #3
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Re: Could use some advice for a friend in BAD shape!!!

Have they tried anything other than Byetta for her, like metformin?

I'm very surprised that the doctors at the Joslin are saying that they're going to try other avenues first when she's obviously in serious trouble here. After all, they could put her on insulin now, and then if she loses enough weight she could, perhaps, get off it in the future. Regardless, this is already doing serious damage to her body and will continue to do so the longer they wait.

And when they say "try other avenues first"...what other avenues are they talking about? Have they explained? If it's diet and exercise, have they referred her to a registered dietician yet? Are they giving her any kind of support other than telling her to lose weight?

I'm sorry, but I am just shocked that she's not getting better care from a Joslin affiliate (I'm assuming she's not in Boston?)


Old 10-03-2008, 12:27 PM   #4
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Orwigsburg, PA, USA
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tfkeel HB User
Re: Could use some advice for a friend in BAD shape!!!

I agree that the care she is getting ain't nothing to write home about....she has a major-league problem which needs to be addressed....and sooner, not later....

Old 10-03-2008, 06:20 PM   #5
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lilbit1973 HB User
Re: Could use some advice for a friend in BAD shape!!!

She's no longer going to Joslin. She stopped going there b/c the doctor knew her supervisor (she works in Forensics at The Sheriff's Office) and all the doctor wanted to talk to her about was her job. This is Joslin here in Florida. So now she has a different endo. I don't know what oral meds she's on, but she is on orals too. Yes, they've referred her to a dietician who told her to eat a lot of broccoli and protein. Does this seem right when her kidneys are already compromised??? She is trying to lose weight, but exercise is hard for her b/c she has RA. So she takes short walks and swims. I suggested she ask the endo for insulin and told her she may even be able to come off it later. She says that each times she sees the endo she mentions insulin but he always tells her no. I really really think she needs it. I've mentioned that maybe she should see another endo, but I don't think she will.

Old 10-21-2008, 12:38 PM   #6
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Winter Park, FL USA
Posts: 4
infolady60 HB User
Re: Could use some advice for a friend in BAD shape!!!

I just started insulin after 12 years on oral meds. All the endo here does is say "here take these pills", does the blood work every three months and never tried to help me with losing the weight so that I could get off the meds. So, now I figured out that I am just in an assembly line and I finally had to get in the insulin line and I am now having allergic reactions and they say "oh, we have never heard of anyone getting reaactions to "Lantus", insulin glargine, even though the leaflet that comes with product says you can have allergic reactions.

Teresa G

Old 10-21-2008, 08:54 PM   #7
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Ontario <canada
Posts: 533
twokatss HB User
Re: Could use some advice for a friend in BAD shape!!!

I am running into the same...I took Levemir for a year and had itching and red welts at injection site. My sugars were high in the mornings all the time. My endo put me off and told me to change vials of insulin. Well this happened with every vial....I take rapid before meals also and do not have this problem with it...Finally I asked to be taken off Levemir and put on Lantus and within 2 weeks I noticed a big differance in my readings. The change was made by my family DR.
Perhaps you need to try a different type of insulin...Maybe even Levemir could help you instead of Lantus...

I hate when we complain to DR's and I even showed them the welts and redness and basically was told it was in my head and this couldn't be happening...What are we to do then....

Old 07-16-2009, 07:51 PM   #8
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Tooele, Utah. USA
Posts: 4
archangel72 HB User
Re: Could use some advice for a friend in BAD shape!!!

I am truley touched by your friendship displayed here. I have been insuline dependant from the begining. Its because of support from family and friends that I made it as far as I have. I am absolutly apauled by what you are describing as the so called treatment your friend is recieving. I think your friend will get through it as long as she has a support like you to help her get through it. While these doctors are exploring other options she is going to have some real issues if these levels are not brought down and soon. She may need to go on suplimental insulin injections till controle can be reached. I will pray for her . God bless you for being such a great friend please contact me any time.

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