Wednesday, May 19, 2004

Tissue Atrophy Reversed!

Here's an update on a posting I made in March 2004 about this subject:
A couple years ago Cassie started to develop a little "dent" on one of her tummy sites. This was caused by a side effect from her insulin called tissue atrophy, a "wasting away" of the cell tissue.

Cassie's pediatric endocrinologist, gave us a little counterintuitive direction and advised us to start choosing infusion sites near her dent with Novolog. He told us that sometimes it can offset the tissue atrophy and begin to build the tissue back up. We did it and noticed the dent starting to go away.

Several months after, I can happily attest that the tissue atrophy has virtually been erased. One less scar from diabetes!

Thanks also to all the well-wishers who emailed us about this.

Amigo Pumps Recalled

Nipro Diabetes Systems has issued a voluntary recall on their Amigo Insulin Pump. You can learn more at their website by clicking here.

Tuesday, May 11, 2004

Airplane Analogy

Scott Hanselman has come up with a very interesting way to educate folks about what living with diabetes is like.

In brief, his analogy goes something like this:
You are flying from L.A. to New York. You have to maintain a consistent altitude the whole way.

Food raises blood sugar (altitude.) Insulin lowers it. Non-diabetics don’t have to think about altitude, as you all have a working pancreas (autopilot) and don’t sweat altitude. Diabetics, on the other hand, have to constantly wonder if they are at a safe altitude. Staying at a consistently high altitude (high blood sugar) will eventually make you sick; while a low altitude (low blood sugar) will kill you quickly.

Here’s where the analogy gets interesting. Remember in the analogy we are flying from L.A. to New York, except we only get to check our altitude seven times. And, we only get to change altitude (take insulin) less than ten times. But, when I check my blood sugar, I’m actually seeing the past. I’m seeing a reading of what my blood sugar was 15 minutes ago. And, when I take insulin, it doesn’t start lowering my blood sugar for at least 30 minutes.

Now, imagine yourself in that plane with an altimeter that shows you the altitude 15 minutes in the past, and a yoke that changes the altitude – but when you press on the yoke, your altitude won’t change for a half-hour. It would be a challenging trip.

Click here to read the entire "airplane analogy."

Nancy Reagan to the Rescue

Former US First Lady Nancy Reagan has joined 100 Nobel prize winning scientists and 206 members of the US Congress in criticizing the Bush administration for its decision to limit funding for stem cell research.

According to Harvard cell biologist Doug Melton embryonic stem cells hold greater promise than adult stem cells to cure type 1 diabetes.

The embryonic stem cells that are proposed for research are surplus cells from In Vitro Fertilization clinics that would that are going to be disposed. Why would we not want to find a cure for diseases like Parkinson's, Altzheimer's or diabetes rather than a full waste bin?

Saturday, May 01, 2004

Going Away

We're a bit nervous leaving the kids, but it's really important to make sure Marinda and I have time alone together to keep our relationship solid. So whenever we line up a babysitter we make sure she is extremely comfortable and capable with diabetes treatment.

We've had amazing babysitters. Mature young ladies who also have type 1 diabetes. They've been lifesavers. Where do we find such qualified individuals? By volunteering at the local chapter of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF)! We invariably meet lots of people who share our same passion to find a cure and are well aware of our medical issues.

Helping to find a fix for diabetes in the long term has also helped us take care of some of the problems with diabetes in the short term