Doctor’s orders

Since switching jobs a month and a half ago, I’ve spent less time on my feet and more time at my desk. The most time I spend walking is either to the office printer (which is ten steps away) or to the coffee machine (which is a longer, but more frequent, trip).

Because of the inactivity, I’ve been dealing with higher BGs for a longer periods of time. I’ve also experienced poor insulin absorption, particularly in my back and butt areas, partly because they’re always pressed against a chair and partly because of developing scar-tissue.

Combine the two, and I’ve gone from regularly setting low temporary basals to stacking corrections and higher full-time basals every day.

So imagine my surprise when, today at my endo’s appointment, the doctor told me my A1C and it was …. lower!! I was floored. (I’m not going to share the number, but I will say that it’s time for me to set a new target). He told me that he was happy with everything, and that I should just keep on doing what I’m doing without any changes.

(What I’m doing, by the way, includes a hefty amount of super-boluses; almost always before breakfast, before disconnecting for a shower, or when correcting a high).

He asked how often I experience lows. It was hard to answer that question, but I could confidently say that it was less frequently than before. That, my friends, is the answer. Reducing the LOW blood sugars usually has the effect of LOWERING one’s average blood glucose, or A1C.  It’s those stubborn highs that come from overcorrecting that completely negate the A1C-benefits of a low, and then some. This is what he said. I agree.

He then asked me how I thought about moving to appointments every six months instead of every four. Apparently, I know what I’m doing. Still, I enjoy going to this doctor and decided to stick with my every-four-month schedule.

* * *

Also during this appointment, I expressed my feelings about my pump/CGM combo, and mentioned how I’d be tempted to switch to the Animas Vibe when it comes available. I recognize that nothing comes close to Carelink Pro when it comes to recording and presenting data, and wanted to know what the doctor thought about that.

“I wish every device presented data in the same way, but unfortunately it doesn’t. Ultimately, you have to live with your choice every day, so pick what works best for you and we’ll work with it.”

Good answer!

* * *

Speaking of pumps, I think I figured out why Medtronic is ditching it’s catchy name “Veo” in the United States (in favor of the dull and meaningless name “530G”). It’s probably to avoid confusion with this little patch-pump:

VGo

* * *

Not everything was peachy-keen at my appointment. First, the credit-card machine used to process my co-pay didn’t work properly. Then, the office printer didn’t work so the doctor couldn’t show me my CareLink Pro reports (though he could view it on the screen in a different room). It seems like these things break all the time.

But it gave me a new-found respect for the medical devices that I use, which – despite frustrating me to no end – have never left me hanging and still keep on ticking. So, if it sounds like I whine about pumps and meters and things a lot, it’s because my expectations are high. They really work quite spectacularly.

* * *

 And I’m finally getting a new prescription for glucagon.

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Posted on September 18, 2013, in Diabetes. Bookmark the permalink. 11 Comments.

  1. This is great news all around – well except for the end part but that’s minor.
    It sounds like you’re doing great things.

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  2. Way to go Scott! Now you just have to keep your glucagon script current 😉

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  3. Crappers! I knew I forgot something at my endo appt the other week…..glucagon script. Sigh. I guess nothing is keeping me from calling in and asking for one from the nurse’s line, except for my laziness in making a phone call.

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  4. Yea! Glucagon bandwagon. I got on it, too and now have two, which I hope I won’t have to use. (But after reading that post about not having glucagon, I busted my tail to get a script written after having a three year expired kit in my house…)
    Glad to hear that despite entering Sedentaryville, you achieved your A1C goal. (And I share mine only because…I’m an exhibitionist.)

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  5. I have Endo envy 😉

    Yay for the A1C!

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  6. Congrats on your A1C!! 🙂 Do you ever print the Carelink reports off at home yourself? Does your doctor actually examine your reports?? I print mine off everytime but my endo never looks at them.

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    • Thanks! Sometimes I look at Carelink at home, though I haven’t in several months. When I see my endo, someone in his staff takes my pump, downloads (or uploads?) it into Carelink Pro – which is much better than the Carelink that we’re allowed to use – and prints out the results. Then the doctor and I look over it together. But this time, the printer didn’t work so he looked at it on the screen, in some room where I wasn’t.

      He’s the whole reason I know about Carelink Pro and appreciate what it, and the Medtronic pump, can offer. My previous doctor never did this.

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      • Interesting, so I’m just using regular Carelink but doctors have access to a Pro version?! You learn something new everyday 🙂

        My old endo used to take my pump and download/upload the data and we would review but I never realized it was different…my new endo doesn’t seem to care about my reports but I still bring them. Either way it’s great info to have!

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      • Kelley, I wrote about the Pro version back in October and included some excerpts. You can see it here: https://rollinginthed.wordpress.com/2012/10/11/the-hook-brings-you-back/

        It makes recommendations, which, I suppose, are “unsafe” to give to patients, but I think it’s value is that the data is presented in a more concise, comprehensive way which isn’t as “cartoon-ish” as the Personal version.

        They have changed the personal one a bit since I wrote that post, but I still like Pro better.,

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