Monday, April 29, 2013

I've decided to get an insulin pump

This is the biggest decision I have made since becoming a diabetic 25 years ago.

I have been on multiple daily injections (MDI) since I was 5 and currently I use Humalog and Lantus spread over at least 5 injections a day.

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Once, for shits and giggles, I calculated how big of a tattoo I could have gotten if, instead of using all my needle stabs and finger pricks and blood draws for treating diabetes I used them all to put ink in my skin. Turns out that I could have gotten a large full-back tattoo! But I digress...

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My HbA1c is good, although I have some almighty horrid fluctuations in my blood sugars and I do get quite a few lows. Yesterday I had 4 lows (under 4.3 mmol/L). And that is of course coupled with some nasty highs too, although I have been working very hard to narrow the range of blood sugar fluctuations I just can't seem to tame them properly.

So why am I making the change? Well there are several important reasons. Yes, even more compelling than the reasons above. I do love a good bullet point so here are some I fashioned jsut for you"

  • See this previous post. Yes, we have sperm-on-ice, so that means that IVF is a GO! All going according to plan this will happen in October sometime. Finally.
  • Being Type 1 Diabetic means I can do more than just snack on prenatal vitamins, folic acid, vitamin D, and healthy fruits'n'veg. I can also work really hard to get my blood sugar control as, um... controlled as possible. This means maintaining a low HbA1c while stabilising the fluctuations and lowering my range of blood sugar results overall. So no pressure.
  • An insulin pump is what I see as the best option for achieving these lofty goals prior to pregnancy. It has also been recommended to me by my endocrinologist, although definitely not as the only option.
  • I want to do it before getting into the mix of IVF treatment + potential pregnancy. I don't know how I will respond to an insulin pump and I want as much time as possible to get to know this new treatment method.
  • I should now qualify* for a fully funded Animas Vibe courtesy of Pharmac. Last August they changed their funding of insulin pumps so that if you meet certain criteria then you can apply to have one. (* My endo has yet to complete the special authority form, so it's not a done deal yet. In fact, I still have to meet with my endo and my diabetes nurse educator soon to discuss this plan o' mine.)
  • I emailed my endo and DNE on the weekend to wave this idea at them, and they seemed to think it was a good plan and that I should qualify. I'm hoping to get appointment times to see both of them about it soon.
  • We have spent so much time and effort pursuing the idea of IVF and having a child that it only makes sense to do everything I can to support this process. If that means chomping on vitamins, wearing an insulin pump and completely changing the way I manage my diabetes, I think it's worth giving it a go.
  • Continuous glucose monitoring! OMG I have wanted one of these for like, ever, but they haven't been available in NZ I don't think. But now with the Animas Vibe being funded it's quite fortuitous as it happens to be Dexcom CGM enabled. Now I've had a pretty good sniff around online and found that the Dexcom G4 CGM is now available in NZ. Of course there is no pricing but the Animas Vibe acts as the receiver and screen to display the CGM data. So perhaps, without needing to purchase a reciever that will make the combined cost of transmitter and sensors affordable? Maybe? I will have to wait and talk to my DNE as she will know :)
So it's been a weekend full of progress and decisions :)

1 comment:

  1. For what its worth, I think you're doing absolutely the right thing. I've been through 3 lots of IVF, and gave birth to our daughter 2 weeks ago, and it would have been a hundred times harder without my pump.

    Good luck :) it's worth it in the end.