Tag: Animas vibe

The itch that won’t quit

From time to time, when I change my infusion site it itches like mad. We’ve all had that itch that just won’t stop. For me, its the site where my insert has been stuck to my body for 2 or 3 days or even a freshly inserted infusion set. It itches and itches and I really have to try my best to resist the urge not to scratch it to death. From the moment it makes contact with my skin or from the moment I remove it, the itch becomes unbearable.

When removing the insert, it can also prove to be very difficult as the insert is extremely sticky. It clings to my skin for dear life and I sometimes find it difficult to separate it from my body. What makes it even harder are those awkward new sites you decide to try out. You transform into a performing Cirque du Soleil acrobat whilst manoeuvring your body to get it in the right spot.

As for a new insert, ripping it off a brand new site would be an absolute waste (especially since diabetes accessories are so costly) and for those old tatty insert’s that just won’t let go, you just want to tear them off!!

After removing the insert, the skin underneath reveals a raised surface, slightly irritated and now, finally, it is able to get some air and it just seems to itch even more.  A grey sticky adhesive coats the area where the insert once sat and resembles someone who hasn’t moisturised their skin for days.

I remember having itching issues from time to time when I was on multiple daily injections (MDI) but not as much since I’ve been an insulin pump user. I suppose when you introduce something foreign on to your body that isn’t supposed to be there, it can cause a number of potential of problems. Several aspects of insulin pumping can cause skin irritations or allergies for diabetics. Causes may include the Teflon cannula, the metal needle, the site adhesive or adhesive materials, and even the insulin itself. When I was MDI, my itching was mainly due to the overuse of certain sites and the metal needle.

When it comes to my itchy insert sites, the truth is it happens very rarely and I haven’t really been able to pinpoint the direct cause of the itch. So, for now, I think I’m just going to try my best to keep rotating my sites, moisturise those sensitive sites (after 22 years I’ve got quite a few) and just continue to keep my skin well moisturised and maybe even try a protective cream to create a barrier between my skin and the inserts to reduce any irritation. With everything that diabetes throws at me I try my best to work it out and make it work. Although I get an itch from time to time, I’ve accepted that it is a part of MY diabetes and that’s ok. I’m very lucky to have a pump and I can deal with a little itch now and again.

Amina xxx

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Wordless Wednesday #6

Happy Diabetes Awareness Month Friends! My aim this month is to try and spread as much awareness for diabetes as I can.  As someone who advocates for diabetes, I want to continue to share the correct message about what it truly means to live with this condition.

JDRF have created an amazing tool which helps diabetics calculate some of their personal daily diabetes stats. I wanted to share my stats with you so you can have an insight into what my life with this condition has been like and what it has taken for me to still be here living a healthy life style.

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This is a rough calculation as there wasn’t an option to enter how many injections you took per day. In my case, I went from 2 injections a day to 5 injections a day in my teens, therefore the number would probably be a lot higher.

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These calculations are for my time on an Insulin Pump – 7 years and 5 months.

 

If you want to calculate your own or your loved ones footprint then click here.

 

Amina xx

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Sick Days!

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Having a cold can be awful, but a cold combined with diabetes is even worse. It messes with your sugar levels making them difficult to manage. Blood glucose levels can become extremely high. These high BG levels are due to a release of stress hormone which occurs when the body is fighting an illness. Glucose is produced in abundance making BG levels sky-rocket.

This weekend I’ve been fighting a cold. I always try to be prepared for cold viruses but the truth is you can never really be prepared. I’ve realised that sometimes the plan can completely fall apart. Usually, I struggle with very high BG levels when I have a cold.  However, this time,  Instead of high BG levels, I experienced a combination of extremely low blood glucose levels and a few high BG levels. So I’ve literally been “yo-yo’in” all over the place.  PFFFFFF!!

Last night, after hours of trying to correct my BG level, I made the decision to completely suspend my pump because my BG level would not go any higher than 4.2 mmol/l, even whilst my pump was suspended. It remained on 4.2 mmol/l and then started to drop again. It was not until I administered a Glucagon injection that I was able to finally reach a BG of 6.0 mmols/l, at which point I was so exhausted that I passed at 3am until this morning.

Even though my BG levels have been fluctuating, I’ve still tried my best to follow a few steps to maintain some level of control with my sugars.

Here are a few things I do:

  • Regularly monitor my glucose levels
  • Check for ketones if  my sugar is high
  • Drink a lot of water to dilute the glucose in my blood and also to keep myself hydrated.
  • If I continue to experience high sugars then I make a slight adjustment in my basal rates by first using the temp basal function on my pump. I usually increase my temp basal initially by 20%,over two hours, whilst continuously monitoring my BG levels. It’s probably wise to seek advice from a doctor with this if you haven’t discussed a sick day plan for your insulin. Also, when I was on multiple daily injections, if my BG rose above 13mmol/l then I’d increase my dose by units for each injection. If it went over 22mmol/lk then I would increase my dose by 4 units per injection. ((Please seek advice from your doctor before you do this))
  • Even though I can’t really taste much and I don’t feel like eating, I still force myself to eat something.
  • Although high BG levels are prone, make sure you still have an up to date Glucagon injection in cases of Hypoglycaemia.

Amina xx

Insulin Pump Therapy Pros and Cons

Before I embarked on my journey, with an insulin pump, I had been on multiple daily injections (MDI) for almost 15 years.  It wasn’t until I began to learn about insulin pump therapy that I truly grasped how different the two were.

With MDI, I feel less training was given in order for me to manage my diabetes. I didn’t learn how to carb count or even have an understanding of what insulin sensitivity was. The main focus of my diabetes management was to administer my insulin (my doses were worked out by the doctor and diabetes nurse, based on my blood glucose readings) when I needed to take it and checking my blood glucose levels.

It was only with insulin pump therapy that I began to have a better understanding of my diabetes management. I had to undergo a process of training before I was given free reign with my pump.  I had to learn how the pump worked and in doing so, I had to develop my understanding of carb counting, insulin to carb ratios, insulin sensitivity, and basal rates. All of which, I have, to be honest, I had no idea what it even meant. I think this is because the nutrition and diabetes management were explained primarily to my mother but this information was very basic and she very much had to figure a lot of it out for herself. This then carried on into my transition from the children’s hospital to the adults clinic.

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The insulin pump, I think isn’t for everyone, it takes a lot of work to make it work. Diabetes management can be improved but it also takes the individuals being able to understand the ins and outs of their condition, how foods interact’s with their body as well as their sensitivity towards insulin.

There are many benefits, as well as problems which can arise due to wearing an insulin pump.

Some of these benefits include:

  • No more MDI: A sense of freedom from having to inject daily. At one point in my diabetes life I was taking 5 injections a day and I think that was one of the most challenging things I’ve ever experienced. It worked well with my sugars and control but it tied me down in so many ways. Let’s just say the insulin pump came at the right time.
  • Data Collection: The insulin pump is able to store a lot of data and when downloaded a clearer picture appears as to what blood glucose levels may be doing at certain times. With my pump (Animas vibe) it allows you to see how much insulin may still be on board in your system which on some occasions has helped me avoid a lot of hypos. There is also stored information on how much insulin is being administered daily over several days. If you can’t remember if you’ve bolused or not, then the pump also has a stored history bank which tells you when you last bolused.
  • Doses: Meal time boluses can be planned out in accordance with the amount of carbohydrates you may consume for that particular meal.
  • Sensor: The pump combined with a sensor, you can see blood glucose levels recorded every 5 minutes over a 24 hour period in graph format.
  • Ease of mind: receiving insulin doesn’t involve dialing up a pen and then finding the perfect spot to inject. It’s as simple as pushing a few buttons and insulin is delivered to you.
  • Cost: This only applies to my UK readers, but insulin pump therapy here is free! However, if you want to use a sensor then this is something that you will have to pay for yourself (which can get pretty costly).

Problems can also arise when it comes to being attached to an insulin pump.

Some of these problems include:

  • To Tube or not to Tube – I’ve been hooked to many a door handle and had my insert ripped from my body (Not nice at all). I’ve had to learn how to conceal my tubing in a way in which it won’t be affected by my surroundings. So the question is, do you choose a pump with tubing or not?  The decision is entirely yours. I suggest if you do choose a pump with tubing then take precaution, keep the tube concealed well under your clothes. There are so many cool diabetes undergarments that can be used to keep our pumps and tubing safe. One of my favourite undergarments for men, women and children is a Swedish company called AnnaPS

  • Wear and Tear – Protect your pump! I think the picture below explains my reasoning for this.

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  • Changes: The insulin pump does require that you change your insert every 2 – 3 days when the insulin cartridge is running low. This is something that you get used to, it has to be done so you get it done!
  • Ketosis: With pump therapy, long-acting insulin isn’t needed. Quick acting insulin is the only form of insulin used. I’ve had occasions where there have been occlusions in the pump tubing during the night and because there is no long-acting insulin available, it has caused my sugar levels to rise at a rapid rate. Acting and reacting quickly when the problem is spotted is essential to getting the blood glucose back in range and avoiding ketones in the urine.
  • Breakdown: Pumps are just machines and they can malfunction. I’ve had many a time when my pump has malfunctioned. One of the worst case scenarios was when I was on holiday, I noticed a crack in my pump and salt water had entered the pump, destroying the battery. My pump wouldn’t come on and was making all sorts of noises but thank god I took a spare (please remember to do that if you go on holiday).
  • Rotate: Remember to rotate you infusion sites as it can irritate the skin where the adhesive sticks to your body.
  • Control: Of course we want to have better control when we first start pumping. However, this doesn’t happen straight away. It took some time for me to understand more about the pump in relation to my body. Your control will start to improve but it won’t be immediate. You have to work on it to achieve better control.

If you are thinking of starting up on an insulin pump look at both the pros and cons involved in managing your diabetes with this technology. Be prepared to work hard at it and most of all be patient with it, you may not get the results you’re after straight away. Nevertheless, don’t give up on it, you’ll get there eventually.

Amina xx

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“It’s all about the Pump Peelz!”

When it comes to my diabetes devices, I’ve never really thought about accessorizing them. I knew about the Pump Peelz from the moment they launched but I was a bit unsure of how well it would perform, in terms of its durability and quality. Lately I’ve seen more and more pump wearers showcasing their very cute and colourful Pump Peelz. It’s becoming the new trendy thing to have in the “diabetes world”.

For those who don’t know what a Pump Peelz is, here’s a little breakdown

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The Pump Peelz is a reusable, waterproof, extremely durable sticker which can be stuck onto a wide selection of diabetes devices e.g. pumps and BG meters. What I really love about it is, it’s a great way for ‘us’ to be able to express ourselves and add our own personal touch to our devices. The design is simple, easy to work with and it can be used on a variety of devices such as the, Animas vibe, Animas ping, Omnipod and One touch IQ are but a few.

The Pump Peelz were created by high school sweethearts, Scott Imblum and Emily Hixon. After Emily was diagnosed with type 1 and began to use an Omnipod, Scott began to think of ways in which she could personalise her diabetes devices. Accessorising is what everybody does. You can pretty much accessorise anything you want, from your laptop keys, tablets and phones so why not accessorise diabetes devices?

The design was originally meant to be a snap on case, that could be customised and reused, but due to high costs this product could not become a reality. However, they did not let it stop them. They had to think of another way to create funding, which is how they came up with the idea of the resilient sticker.

Pump Peelz have many designs to offer, when it comes to designing your devices. However, as someone who likes to draw and create things, I always thought it would be even more interesting if I could put my own stamp on it. To my surprise, when I looked on the Pump Peelz site they had added a design tool which allowed users to add their own image/s. Fantastic!

Untitled-8I quickly tested out one of my Sugar High Sugar Low images and tried my best to resize it to fit the Animas pump design that was available. The tool is great but I quickly realised that the image could only be made bigger or smaller and not stretched from different sides to fit the design better. (Maybe this could be a new idea when upgrading the design tool). I decided to make the image as large as possible so that it covered the majority of the pump surface. Another thing to take into consideration is, whatever image you use, part of it will be cut out to allow your pump screen and buttons to be visible.

The Pump Peelz cost around $14 which is roughly £9.99. This does not include postage and packaging, so depending on where you’re located the cost is different. At the checkout you have the option to calculate your shipping based on your location. For someone in the UK the postage and packaging cost £5, which in total is quite a lot to spend on a sticker, but I think it was worth it.

Once the order went through, Pump Peelz sent me a notification email to let me know that they had received my order and then I received an email when the Pump Peelz was sent out. Thumbs up for customer service.

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So, I’ve been waiting in anticipation for this package to arrive. I ordered it about 2 weeks ago and yesterday I was so happy to receive it! I wanted to see how my image had turned out. What was this thing going to look like?

So this is how it came. It was stuck to a glossy piece of paper, (Which by the way smelt  nice.Was that just me?” hahahhaa)

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So here’s my pump now!!

 pump1pump2What a difference it’s made. I’d definitely recommend it to anyone thinking about buying one. Only time will tell, how well it will be able to maintain its durability.  Keep an eye out for a review of the quality of the Pump Peelz sticker after using it for a few months.

I’m very proud to wear my pump but now I feel even prouder to wear my pump with my Pump Peelz. 🙂

 

Amina xx

Snow day tips!

Yesterday, I was discussing the seasons with my son and now that it’s March we’d soon be able to see flowers blooming. However, this morning, we woke up to this!

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I love a bit of snow but I always have to take into consideration, how the colder weather will affect my BG levels. In most conditions, whether it’s hot, humid or cold, my BG levels always drop. So I knew I had to prepare myself, especially since I had the morning school run to do (which also meant I’d be driving) so yet another reasons to make sure my BG levels were under control. With all of this in mind, I’ve put together a list of tips on how to manage BG levels in the colder weather.

Test, test, test don’t guesstimate:
The cold weather can definitely affect your levels, so always remember to check your BG levels often. Frequent testing will allow you to avoid any high or low BG levels. Test before you leave the house. When I drive, I always make sure my BG is around 7mmol/l so today I started at 7.8mmol/l.

A few hours after school run……..

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Stay warm:
Make sure you’re dressed in warm clothing. Wearing gloves will help to keep your fingers warm so that when you need to test your BG level your fingers aren’t completely frozen. Try to warm them up before testing so you are able to get enough blood. Although I had gloves on this morning, my hands were still a little cold, so I used the car heater to warm them up. Also make sure you wear comfortable and warm shoes with a good grip that will protect your feet and keep them warm to ensure good circulation. Keep your feet well moisturised and check them regularly for any cuts or cracks etc.

Glucose:
Make sure you take some form of glucose with you when you leave the house. Choose glucose that will not freeze in the car. You need something that is easy to access in case of a low BG. I have a secret draw in my car where I hide snacks and juice boxes just etc. Just in case my BG decides to drop.

Protect your insulin and devices:
Just like hot weather, the cold weather can also affect your diabetes accessories. If you wear an insulin pump, wear the pump close to your body, under layers of clothing. In extreme weathers, insulin can break down and become ineffective. Also make sure your BG meter is in its case. I usually wrap it in a towel, if I’m travelling in the car for a long period of time in the cold.

Stay active:
The cold weather can make you want to just snuggle up in a nice warm blanket with a hot cup of tea or coffee. Nevertheless, you should try to keep yourself active during these colder temperatures. When you move around it will help to keep BG levels lower even when the weather isn’t a factor. Just because its cold and snowing outside doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the weather. I like to play in the snow with my children, building snowmen and throwing snow balls.Exercise is key!

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Cutting back:
Because my BG levels like to drop, this usually means I have to adjust my basal rates. If you notice a change in your levels then contact your healthcare team so they can help you adjust your rates.

 

Amina xx

 

Malfunctioning on Summer Break

This Summer, I visted the Caribbean

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Between, the kids, the blood sugars, insulin bolus’ and carb ratios, travelling with diabetes can be daunting. However, I wasn’t going to let any of it get in the way. I was going to enjoy every last minute of my holiday, soak up the sun and relax. So I prepared several check lists for all the basic things I needed to remember like, passports, things for the kids, tickets and of course a specific check list just for diabetes. It went a little something like this:

1. Make doctor’s appointments: Discuss basal rates and changes which might need to take place due to travels and weather. Ask doctor to provide a letter to explain that you are diabetic and what that means in terms of hypoglycaemia etc. Also that you are carrying an insulin pump and any risks which could occur due to being detached from the pump
2. Order loaner pump from Animas (or your pump provider). Animas also provide a more detailed letter and risks of putting pump through x-ray machines. AN12-1465A_v2_UK_Airline Letter FINAL (2)-1
3. Make sure you’re up to date with vaccinations.
4. Order more medication for the duration of your trip. (double, triple the amount needed)
5. Order Frio bags for medication that needs to be refrigerated.
6. Contact airline and let them know you are diabetic and travelling with an insulin pump and medication.
7. Travel insurance- Make sure your pump is covered and you’re covered for illness etc.

Going through the airport
1. Don’t put your pump through the x-ray
2. Don’t detach your pump
3. Make sure you carry all your medication with you in your hand luggage not in your suitcase
4. Adjust your pump for different time zones
5. Disconnect your pump during take off and landing – Pressure in the cabin can tamper with your insulin delivery as pressure can build’s up and force insulin through the tubing. Staying connected to your pump could cause you to have a hypo during your flight.
6. Wear some form of medical ID

10 HOURS ON A PLANE WITH A SCREAMING TODDLER AND I WAS READY TO LAND

And so many beautiful views awaited

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Many days into my holiday and after several beach sessions. My pump started to make a barage of noises. On closer inspection, I noticed that there was a huge crack near the battery lid.

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The salty water had entered the battery compartment and made it rust.  I was so glad to have a loaner pump. I quickly switched the damaged pump for the loaner pump and continued to enjoy my holiday.

BTW: JUST IN CASE YOU ARE UNABLE TO GET THE OLD PUMP WORKING LIKE ME. MAKE SURE YOU WRITE DOWN ALL YOUR BASAL SETTING, INSULIN TO CARB RATIO’S, WRITE EVERYTHING DOWN BEFORE YOU TRAVEL.

PHew pump sorted, back to the holiday

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Thanks for stopping by and just remember to have fun when your on holiday.

Amina xx

Sugar High Sugar Low: Preparing for pregnancy

Before conceiving I had a lot of things to contemplate such as being fit, healthy, eating well, having tight control of my blood glucose levels and most important of all achieving at least an A1c of 7.0%. Both diabetes and pregnancy combined have their own unique challenges. I knew that I would have a lot of hard work ahead of me.pregnancy tagcloud pictogram

My diabetes appointments are usually quarterly at the diabetic centre. My previous appointment showed that my A1c was 7.5%, so I decided to visit my diabetic team and inform them of my plan, as I did with my first pregnancy. The diabetic nurse retested my A1c and after two weeks I found out my A1C was actually 7.3%. Blood glucose control is vital during pregnancy because if you can imagine even before you’re aware of your pregnancy, your baby’s brain, spinal cord, heart and other organs have already started to form. This totally freaks me out because without tight control I could have possibly affected the way in which my child developed.

I was given the opportunity to have a trial run of the dexcom G4 sensor for a month which I talked about in my post, “Cyborg for a month or perhaps longer”.

Dexcom G4is a continuous glucose monitoring (CGM) sensor which is inserted into the body and is able to give blood glucose readings every five minutes. The sensor automatically transmits this reading to my insulin pump (Animas Vibe) and creates a graph. With my insulin pump I am able to set an ideal blood glucose range. If my blood glucose level goes above or below this range my insulin pump alarms to alert me of either an increase or decrease in blood glucose level.

My trial run actually went on for longer than a month and it was during that time that I conceived. My pregnancy journey had started and with my team we made the decision to continue with the CGM during this pregnancy. To start with the CGM really helped me achieve tighter control and a better understanding of patterns occurring at certain times in the day. After a month my A1c had dropped to 6.4%.

By week five of my pregnancy I had developed severe morning sickness. I was a complete mess. I had no appetite, I lost a lot of weight and I needed far less insulin. My insulin requirement continued to decrease during the next few weeks. The morning sickness continued and to make matters worse my CGM didn’t seem to want to cooperate. The readings on my insulin pump compared to a finger prick reading was completely different. It stopped picking up low and high blood glucose levels. It just did the complete opposite.

I was able to change my sensor and transmitter  a few times but unfortunately every time I got a new one the same problem occurred. No matter where I placed the sensor on my body it would react in the same way. My diabetic doctor seemed to think that it could possibly be the pregnancy hormones interfering with the sensor. I went one step further and decided to contact Dexcom with regards to this. They were unable to conform if this was a possibility or not. I was told that no research has ever been done on the effects of pregnancy hormones and the accuracy of this sensor.

My doctor asked me if I’d prefer to go without the sensor and I agreed to go without it for the duration of my pregnancy. I began my rigorous blood glucose testing and on some days I’d test up to fifteen times.

logbookHaving good control minimised risks such as miscarriage and birth defects. My pregnancy was able to progress well almost as if I did not have diabetes. Four months into my pregnancy I managed to achieve an A1c of 5.7% and it remained that way throughout the pregnancy

With the help of my antenatal diabetes consultant I was able to plan my target blood glucose range so that my blood glucose could be as close to normal as possible during my pregnancy. We also discussed and looked in detail at basal rates, insulin to carb ratio’s and insulin sensitivity. I was able to be in contact with him on a daily basis and then I attended the diabetic antenatal clinic every week. In actual fact I was very lucky to have had a team of people accessible to me which consisted of x3 diabetic midwives, x2 OBGYN’s x1 antenatal diabetes consultant and a dietician. I also still had contact with my diabetes team from before my pregnancy. I WAS VERY LUCKY!

Another important factor with diabetes and pregnancy is the health of your eyes. I had to have my eyes checked every trimester by the Eye hospital to make sure that no changes were occurring. A month after the birth of my first child, I developed changes in my eyes which then corrected themselves strangely enough. However it is routine for diabetics to have regular screenings during their pregnancy here in Manchester.

Preparing for pregnancy and the pregnancy itself was extremely difficult. I had moments when I felt stressed out, happy, anxious, nervous and mostly worried. Regardless, I felt that patience and maintaining a serene demeanour was definitely key to having a healthy pregnancy and ultimately a beautiful healthy baby.

Amina xx

The beeping D ……

As you may know I recently started a sensor trial, which started off really well. I got my sensor fitted everything was running smoothly until I decided I was going to go to the supermarket.

First supermarket trip

The moment, I stepped into the supermarket doors.

BEEP, BEEP, BEEP, BEEP, BEEP! (Anti-theft alarm)

Of course I totally ignored it and kept walking, there were so many people going in and out of the supermarket.

Major Side note: I was coming into the supermarket and in any case it’s not in my nature to shop lift.

I continued with my shopping, arrived at the till, paid for my goods and went through another set of alarms (WHICH WENT OFF).  I looked around because, that surely was not me! So I kept on walking. I reached the exit and walked through the doors with a herd of other people (YES the alarm went off again)! Still oblivious I continued to walk towards the car and go home.

“Wow those alarms were going off a lot. I wonder why?”

My second supermarket trip

Off I go to the supermarket nice and early to pick up a few things.

Side note: I love going to the supermarket nice and early. Its empty and I can just pop in and pop out. Job Done!

I reached the entrance and BEEP, BEEP, BEEP, BEEP!  OK I was the only one walking through, was that me? The guard just nodded and smiled so I smiled back and continued walking in. Shopping done and paid for. I approached the first alarm, BEEP, BEEP, and BEEP! No that was definitely me that time. I decided to turn around and go back to the lady at the till to make sure there were no tags in my bag. The lady checks and finds no tags. She encourages me to just go through. BEEP, BEEP, BEEP! That now confirmed that it was me beeping.

So embarrassing! I had a feeling that perhaps it was something to do with my sensor. I was totally dreading going through the exit alarms so I decide to let the guard know I was wearing a sensor and it might possibly go off as I go through the alarm. I showed him my receipt and my pump just in case he didn’t believe me. Off I went!

BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEP!

I continued to use the sensor but I just felt that whenever I tested my BGL it wasn’t even close to the numbers on my pump. After 12 days the sensor totally failed and produced an error message that read ERROR 0.

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After 5 hours the sensor remained like this so I decided to call Animas (they are so helpful) and I ended up having a lengthy conversation with them. The lady I spoke to asked me several question and tried to get the sensor running again. However she finally said, that the sensor had failed and that I should remove it all together. When I removed the sensor it was bent and had barely pierced my skin. I also mentioned my beeping every time I went through the supermarket alarm. She said that it’s possible that the transmitter may have been faulty. I gave her the codes on both the sensor and transmitter and I was sent new replacements the following day.

I then restarted my sensor trial and I’m now on day 5, no errors or false readings. My BGLs have been spot on when I cross reference them with my BGL on my BG meter. I’m starting to see a clearer picture of what my BGLs are doing and have been able to make adjustments in my basal rates. It still needs some fine tuning but I feel I’m finally starting to iron out all the lows.

Has this (the beeping) ever happened to anyone else? Or have you ever had a faulty transmitter or sensor in general?

 

Amina xx

Omipod or stick with the Vibe??

The other day, I found out that my warranty on my Animas Vibe had actually ended and it was just a continuation of my previous pump (Animas 20/20). So essentially I have been walking around without any warranty for the past 3 months.

WHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHAT!

Anyway! I’ve been given the option of either getting a brand new Animas Vibe or an Omnipod. I’m well aware of what both pumps can do. However I wanted to get your views on which pump would be the better option for me to go with? Or you’re experiences with either pump. I like my Vibe it’s small and easy handle but I also like the idea of the Omnipod as its cable free, I can check my BGL’s on there too and it seems more advanced than my current Vibe.

How does the Omnipod work with the Dexcom G4? Would I need a receiver?

I would appreciate any feedback you can give me to make my decision a lot easier.

*BTW I and other UK WordPress users have been having a lot of trouble using WordPress due to the Internet Watch Foundation blocking WordPress. Although the block has been lifted, some of the WordPress servers are still black listed by ISP’s. On some days I can log on to my blog and access my blog posts. On other days I can’t access a thing. 

Thanks Amina.

 

Cyborg for a month or perhaps longer :/

As a lot of my readers may know I’m from the UK. As a type 1 diabetic living in the UK all my diabetes care and expenses are paid for by the NHS (National Health Service). This means that all my diabetes equipment, my insulin pump, my test strips, my blood glucose machines and even any prescriptions are all free. Actually all diabetics in the UK should have a medical exemption card which makes all their prescriptions free.

Sorry all my T1Ds who I know go to hell and back with their insurance companies and supplies. That’s another additional fight towards diabetes.

I currently have the Animas Vibe which has CGM (continuous glucose monitor) capability. However since I’ve had it I haven’t had a sensor like the Dexcom G4. This is because my diabetes centre have not been able to secure funding for me, until today. YAY!

dexcom g4

* The sensor is supposed to only last 7 days and at this point the sensor session times out. However after talking to Dexcom I was told that the sensor can last between 10 -14 days. The sensor session can be started again and sometimes last a lot longer than 14 days.

I’ve been given the CGM sensor for a month. Now that I’m aware that the sensor won’t last an entire month i’m going to aim to keep this fist sensor on for two weeks. I’ll be documenting my experience with the sensor and my BGL over this month. As I said funding is limited therefore sensors are few, this also means that every two weeks I’ll have to return the sensor to the diabetes centre and get a new one fitted. If I wanted to have the sensors as a more permanent thing I’d have to fund it myself.

 I feel I need to explain why I of all the T1D’s was able to get a sensor.

Since I had my little boy I’ve progressively suffered with severe hypos, especially during the night. For all you T1Ds out there,  you know what night time hypos means. Diabetes is a scary thing to have to deal with on a daily basis, without having to deal with extreme lows in the night. For the non-D’s this means that I can be up several times during the night when others are fast asleep, checking my BGLs in fear of them dropping too low. These lows can cause what we call a rebound (this is when the low BGL rebounds up and you end up with a very high BGL reading). The sensor will allow me to catch some of these severe lows.

Here’s a breakdown of costs:

  • Transmitter and Receiver and cables £975 and they usually last between 9 – 12 months. To replace this it cost £325
  • A box of 4 sensors costs £250. Should last between 10 -14 days, sometimes longer
  • To buy one sensor costs £62.50 plus P & P = £7.50

So if I was to go with the transmitter, receiver and the box of 4 sensors that would mean I’d have to spend £1214.50 to start the whole process. Plus I’d have to factor in the cost of the transmitter and receiver breaking down so all together it would cost £1539.50. One good thing is that I’d get a VAT exemption, so that good ha! It’s definitely something to think about.

For now I’ll see how this trail period goes before I make a decision.

Happy Pumpdexi’ing  lol!

Get creative with Diabetes

Since, I didn’t get a chance to join in on the Diabetes blog week. I wanted to post this creative piece, which I had already prepared a while ago.

The moment I realised,

I RUN ON INSULIN

The Bond

Where would I be, without my insulin pump?

My constant supply, my night and day.

My everything, my all, the strength by my side.

My companion and I, we struggle, we stride, yet we continue to survive.

You who I can depend on, I will defend you, always on your side.

You endure, my highs, my lows, with no word, no sighs.

You are forever committed to me, for as long as I stay devoted to you.

What would life be, without your endless support?

Every day a new challenge, we fight, we fall, yet we’re still standing tall.

Oh How I envy you sometimes, looking all so poised and refine.

Memory takes me back, to when me and mine would work just fine.

Connected we will stay, till the end of my days

Me and my insulin pump.

By Sugar High Sugar Low