Monday, April 26, 2004

Thursday, April 22, 2004

Artificial Pancreas

The Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF) has identified the development of an artificial pancreas as one of the 6 top ways to improve diabetes management. Medtronic is well along the path of making one - click here to read all about it.

Cold Radar

Many times we get an early warning that Cassie is coming down with something. A couple days before all the symtoms of a cold hit, we get unexplained high blood sugars that are hard to knock down.

The flip side of this is that as soon as she gets on the road to recovery her blood sugars go low.

Stomach Bug

Maybe one of the biggest things we fear most about the cold and flu season is the possibility of Cassie getting a stomach bug. Getting an illness that makes you not eat, lose fluids and raise ketones is a chilling prospect for anyone dealing with diabetes.

Cassie just got hit with the stomach flu, and it took her out of commission for a week. At first we weren't sure her diarrhea was from eating something that upset her stomach or from ketones caused by several nights of high blood sugars. As soon as we determined that it was a virus, we promptly called our pediatric endocrinologist for some advice to get her ketone levels down.

Dr. H told us the best way to get her ketones down was to ply her with sweets - anything that she could stomach, then give her insulin for it. Her lack of eating had led to her body breaking down body fat for energy. Metabolizing body fat produces ketones as a by-product. In effect we were doing the reverse of the Atkins diet.

As with any cold or flu, drinking lots of fluids was highly recommended. It helps the body flush out ketones and glucose that isn't effectively absorbed. Of course, lots of rest helps too.

She's much better now, but hopefully you can benefit from our experiences with a bout of the dreaded stomach bug.

Thursday, April 15, 2004

Taxes!

Don't forget to keep tabs on all your medical expenses for tax write offs. If you didn't do it for 2003, make sure you keep a shoebox or envelope to hold all your pharmacy receipts, doctor visit co-pays and anything else for your ENTIRE family. It's a valid deduction and one less thing any family dealing with a chronic disease shouldn't get penalized for.

Monday, April 05, 2004

Brilliant Design

We've been testing the new Flash glucometer by Therasense and are very impressed. Not only is it incredibly small, but also packed with something every parent needs for the midnight blood tests: a built in flashlight that helps you get the blood sample on the strip. Bravo to Therasense for being sensitive to the needs of bleary eyed diabetics and their parents!

You can check out the new meter at http://www.therasense.com.

Thursday, April 01, 2004

Experimental Drug Slows Type 1 Diabetes

Here's some promising news from the first human trials of Diamyd. This drug which slows the autoimmune response may be a neat complement to the Edmonton protocol. Click Here to read the full WebMD article.