Blog Entries With Tag: DTC


Posted: Dec 23, 2014

... my new Animas One Touch PING (I think of the game ping pong with that name) insulin pump that I started on yesterday aka Ziggy and his side kick Stardust - the OneTouch meter remote (no more lifting my skirts up to reveal my knickers to the world when I want to do a bolus).  

It will take abit of getting used to how much blood Stardust uses compared to Limoncello - my FreeStyle Lite (who will remain as my standby for days I can't squeeze out large droplets of vampire blood.

I had wanted to change to the Vibe, which has the CGMS option on it's screen which is an extra $200 (the PING is $6,995).  I paid for it on my credit card that is allowing an extra 1 year warranty on it on top of the 4 year warranty you get with the pump (having had previous probs with the 2020 - I wanted to ensure I had 1 extra year more).  I'm one smart cookie aren't I?  Well, you won't think so after reading the following.

Laws here in Canada do NOT allow you to change your mind once you've purchased a pump ... even if the box isn't opened - live and learn - or move to US of A - where you have better consumer protection - from some of the thread discussion I've read on forums.   

So, tonight - it's installing a Dexcom G4 sensor - the transmitter and receiver was given to me by islet cell transplant - who now insulin free (whoo! whoo!)  from Alberta.   I may continue to use it out of pocket once the Christmas present of box of sensors that my Animas rep gave to me (ususallly a box of 4 will set you back $340 for a month supply - cha ching) - runs out.

One thing I am finding out about the Dexcom ... after reading/watching the videos on their site.  They keep on telling you that ... the CGMS does not replace your blood meter ... that whatever your CGMS tell you - that you should go with what your finger prick #BGNow number is.  This is one thing I did not realise when looking into the CGMS.  I knew a blood test had to be done a few times a day - but not some of what I came across at this link.  Therefore, you still have to purchase perhaps as many blood test strips as you had before, in order to stay in a good BG zone.

So, between testing still with the finger sticks as some of us call them - and then to justify the the $7K yearly cost is abit scary (like buying a used car every year as my DH put it to me - men are so practical when it comes to justifying a purchase).   Thank goodness for DTC here in Canada as well, but we have yet to see how much we can claim since I was approved a few years ago ... it's sitting down ... pulling out past income taxes, etc. etc.  aka - we'd rather be sailing - than crunching numbers.  Though my DH says he'll keep on working as long as he has to for affording these items - but the rotten thing is ... he's able to retire next year after 35 years. 

GUILT!!!

Can you tell that I feel so guilty that my DH has to work longer due to my diabetes at times?  That shows you how much someone loves you when they give up their retirement plans for you (his are sailing around the world - but you never know - maybe we'll be able to do it).

So, here's to the next adventure with devices from Animas .... 

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Tags: Dexcom G4 (1) insurance (1) pump (1) insulin (1) sugar (1) meter (1) blood (1) Canada (1) Disability Tax Credit (1) DTC (1) Freestyle (1) Abbott (1) One Touch (1) Ping (1) CGMS (1) Animas (1)
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Posted: Jul 18, 2013

When I first started to wear an insulin pump back in 2008, I didn’t realise that wearing one would restrict some of my clothing options.  Living in Montreal, the fashionista capital of Canada (okay – there’s Toronto – aka mini-me USA – but they just don’t have that French flair like we do ).

It was sort of nice since January, when I took a pump break, not to have to spend the extra time to pick out clothing that would not reveal a bulge of George Michael aka GM (pun intended there – remember – I grew up with Benny Hill) my insulin pump.  Now that I’ve been back on the pump for over a month now, I realise that I have to take extra time to figure out what to wear that will allow me easy access to George Michael.   Hmmm, should have I had added that time factor into my application for DTC?

I did the stint for almost a month of wearing the infusion set in my arms.  That was kind of neat – almost like I wasn’t wearing an infusion set except when I’d hit a muscle or nerve ending in my arm with the stainless steel infusion needle (found Contact Detach/Sure-T does this more than the Inset 2 sets). One thing I am going to try out if I can get some samples of shorter needle/cannula length for the infusion sets - just like I have done with the shorter 4mm pen needles I started to use back in April.  My absortion with the shorter pen needle created no change in my BG's - which I thought it would due to my not being a slim gal (as I had told the RN when she gave me some samples of the BD 4mm pen needles said skin depths for absortipon of insulin doesn't change in the human body).  Anyway, back to old GM, here  I was tucking him into a sports bra – where I couldn’t believe that despite how hot it gets inbetween the girls – the insulin would keep on performing 100%.  My fear, like other diabetics is that heat will deteriote our insulin – but after 3 days of using the same insulin in the cartridge – my blood sugars (BG) stayed stable.

Actually, stable isn’t the word I should be using here.  I’ve been experiencing hypos (low BG) more often - that almost reminded me of my days when I was MDI prior to going onto the pump (one of the reasons I went onto the pump in the first place was due to having frequent hypos.  I sort of didn't understand how to use my combinations of insulin properly pre-2008, I was trying to learn how to do the poor man's pump method - but not quite doing it correctly.  As I keep on telling pumpers who’ve never gone back to MDI since starting on the pump - being on the pump has taught me how to fine tune with ONE insulin and that with that knowledge - you can easily transferred over to using TWO insulins when doing MDI.  It really isn't that difficult - honest - you've just got to know how to use your insulin(s) - and their little quirks.

So, with the hypos I’ve been having – sometimes a few a day – the things I have planned to do – that usually involve some activity (even simple grocery shopping believe it or not) – have to be shelved.  I do NOT like to have my diabetes rule what I can or cannot do.  My poor DH has to put up with my having to tell him that I can’t do this / that – and he’s so far not really sad much – as I go “I’m so sorry, I’m so sorry” or “Get me some quick acting sugar NOW!!!”.  What a range of emotional outburst I put him through – that is so not me – that it makes me cringe if a fly is on a wall witnessing this (thank goodness they don’t have the ability to hold a video camera).

My basal rate has now been reduced by almost 20% - but I’m still needing to tweak it abit with some more basal testing since now I am going low in the afternoon (very rare for me).  If that doesn’t work and I’m still experiencing low blood sugars (hypos), then it’s looking at my carb ratio (I:C) – which I have slightly changed since I’m now understanding I’m insulin sensitive.  The other thing to look at is my Insulin Sensitivity Factor (ISF) - which to me is a trial and error type of test - since there are a few different formula's out there to deterimne what is best for "you".  

Ahh isn't diabetes control a fun puzzle or what?
 
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Tags: set (1) infusion (1) DTC (1) Disability Tax Credit (1) basal (1) pump (1) insulin (1) George Michael (1) GM (1) Ratio (1) Carb (1) ISF (1) Insulin Sensitivity Factor (1)
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Posted: Jul 5, 2012

Well, I was expecting what my endo told me a few hours ago when I had my 6 month check up – my A1C was 7.2% - usually it’s 6% - has been for past 4 years ever since going onto the pump.  That was one discussion we had – as usual – he’s not keen on the pump – except in children – where he said that less hypos are shown in children (if only I could tell him some of the stories that I’ve heard from D-Mum’s about that – but we could have been debating for hours – while his other patients were waiting).  He was not keen on my going onto the pump back in 2008 – when I decided to give it a try – but eventually I proved to him – that for me – it works ….. as well as MDI (multiple dosage injections) do for me.  I am lucky that I can do both – but as long as I can afford to pump – as it is a luxury if you do not have insurance coverage / provincial coverage / Sugar Daddy – the regular routine of MDI does work – with abit more effort – but it does work as I’m sure some of you reading this will agree. 

The result of my higher A1C is mainly due to being in the menopause stage of my life (oh joy) – and learning to readjust my insulin needs – weight (I have gained 11 lbs / 5 kg).  I didn’t need to step onto the scale to know that – rubbing thighs making music to my ears lately (NOT) have been making me wince.  Either I learn to take charge, get out of my potato couch mode – or change jobs (what I do now is basically a desk job – prior to this I was much more active) – so I’ve got to get out and just DO IT – rather than write about it – and suffer the consequences.  What didn’t help was problems with an elbow and drugs to help it and to top it all off last month’s threats made to my personal life – very unpleasant to say the least – were a test of my sanity – my parents / my bosses / friends / neighbours – all came to my help keep me sane thru’ the days that followed.  Hopefully the threats do not occur - if they do – we’re prepared.

The other reason for my visit to my endo – was to finally have him sign the Disability Tax Credit (DTC) forms that I’ve been wanting to give to him since I learned about this earlier in the year (see forum discussion link here) – that will either be accepted by the federal government as being legit or not.  He sadly does not like the word “disability” – and in a way – I agree – but heck – if I can get some sort of monies back – to help maintain my health as long as I can without going into the dog cat house – then call me disabled!!!   Like I told him, one of the form questions ask – “Does your patient meet the conditions for life sustaining therapy as described above? “ - the answer is a resounding “YES”!!  Without it, I’d be not only disabled but most likely dead in a short time.  So forms, along with printed up pages from Diabetes Advocacy – will hopefully help him understand what I am trying to attain.

So, as I left the office, into the stinking heat wave outside (a balmy 30C / 86F) – I almost felt like crying believe it or not.  Yes, I know an A1C of 7.1% isn’t bad – I know why it is occurring – but I hate having my diabetes control be a victim of it.  So, what does this D-gal do to handle the latest result ?  She goes shopping – finds herself a really nice blue TIGHT shimmery skirt from H&M (only $10) to be worn at hopefully a future D-OC (diabetes online community) meet up – and driving back home – windows open in the car with music from Caliente (tropical latin music) blasting away.  Yes, I am back in my happy place as I plan how to get my diabetes back in control!!! Ole!

Oh – and guess what - when I got home – my blood sugar (BG) was 4.1 mmol/l / 74 mg/dl – right on (this warmer weather keeps my BG’s in good control). 

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Tags: menopause (1) DTC (1) Disability Tax Credit (1) Diabetes Advocacy (1) blood glucose (1) BG (1) A1C (1)
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