Is it just me, or is there a negative connotation that comes with using certain diabetes products – even if they are legitimate products used in certain ways? It’s like there are “special accommodations” being made for those who have “something wrong with us” — something even more “wrong” than diabetes itself? (As if the Food Police weren’t enough!).
Take, for example, the Sure-T. I’ve written before about how I much I love this infusion set. But here’s what Medtronic has to say about it. From yesterday’s Loop Blog:
This infusion set can be used if you:
• Have had reactions to infusion sets with plastic cannulas
• Have a history of bent cannulas with other infusion sets
• Are pregnant (recommended for up to the second trimester, and then the MiniMed Silhouette)
• Are a small child
Unlike all of the other sets listed, there is nothing listed about comfort, activity, convenience, or personal preference on this one. This set is indicated, quite simply, for people whose bodies are not like most others. If you aren’t fortunate enough for your body to accept the latest-and-greatest of infusion sets, then you can always dust off this older, primitive model and give it a go.
At least that’s how I perceive it. It seems like the Infusion-Set-Of-Last-Resort. And every time I tell someone that I use it, I feel like I’m admitting that something’s wrong with me.
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I also feel like something’s wrong with me when I need to increase the depth setting on my lancer. The numbers range from 1 through 9, and typically I use a setting between 1 and 3. When I notch it up to 4 or higher, I start to think that something’s wrong with my fingers. Maybe my circulation is deteriorating and the blood doesn’t get to the surface. Maybe my once silky-smooth fingertips are now becoming tough as shoe leather. Whatever it is, it gives me a feeling that something’s going wrong with me. (In all honesty, maybe I just need a new, sharper lancet).
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These are just two examples of the stigmas that I personally feel that are associated with diabetes products which I feel go unrecognized.
Sadly, there are other examples - false examples – which are propagated through out the healthcare-system which are much more harmful. Like the one that says Continuous Glucose Monitors are only for “uncontrolled diabetics.” That’s the one that leads to insurance denying this vital piece of equipment to those who’ve demonstrated a desire and ability to take control of themselves. Then there’s the one that says that Type 1 Diabetes is “the bad kind” – but Type 1 with an insulin pump; well that’s really bad. In the Type 2 world, the word “insulin” alone often finds itself in the context of threats or failure.
It shouldn’t be that way. And if you’re new to this blog and don’t know me well, know that I don’t believe any of those so-called conclusions expressed in the above paragraph.
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But despite being well-educated on the topic (as I like to consider myself), it’s still hard to shake those first two. I’ve got to get the thought that “something’s wrong” out of my head.