Monday, 30 April 2012

Article on Depression and Diabetes

This is an interesting article on depression and diabetes.  It is a well known fact that the two go together.  Unfortunately, it adds to the burden of taking care of yourself when you have more than one illness...

Dentist Appointment on Wednesday : The Importance of Dental Health

As I stated in my previous post on infections...

I told one of my friends who is a dentist that I had Type 1 Diabetes and he told me to get into the dentist asap to get things checked out. Apparently, oral health is extremely important when dealing with diabetes. I was shocked!

Your chance of having more oral problems jumps when you are a diabetic. My personal dentist recommended that I now see him once every 4 months instead of once every 6. He just said we needed to keep a closer eye on things and make sure nothing gets out of hand. If there is an oral infection it can easily spread into your bloodstream he explained. Then he found a cavity! My first! ahhhh.

Thursday, 26 April 2012

Insurance Companies

Insurance Companies

They can be a real pain!!!  The key is to be persistent, they are counting on the fact that most people will not keep on top of them.  That is my conspiracy theory for the day. (Although strangely it seems my Dr's share my theories.)  That is all I have to say on this matter.  I am sure we have all experienced it.

Insulin Neuritis

Insulin Neuritis : A strange and little known diabetic complication

I decided to write this post because currently my feet are burning and tingling and I can tell it is going to be one of those nights...

I currently suffer from Insulin Neuritis.  This is not a complication that you read about in many diabetes books or blogs.  The symptoms are mainly tingling/prickling/hot and cold sensations in my feet, hands and sometimes oddly enough my face.  My endocrinologist has told me this is an extremely rare complication and is usually found in only newly treated diabetics.  It almost acts as an allergic reaction to insulin. 

It is caused by the rapid decrease in blood glucose levels brought on by the use of insulin.  In my case, my HBA1C went from about 15 to 8 in a few months and this is when I started to notice these sensations.  They come and go, sometimes they are extremely aggravating and sometimes only slightly annoying.  Sometimes it does keep me up at night and that is especially annoying because then my glucose is off the next day.  I have noticed lack of sleep definitely effects my sugars.

Wednesday, 25 April 2012

Other People and Their "Knowledge and Experiences""

Other People and Their "Knowledge and Experiences"

When you are first diagnosed you will hear from all kinds of different people with their annoying/frustrating/ridiculous/sad/rude/funny comments.  I imagine that this happens to people diagnosed with any disease but it is especially different with diabetes because of the difference between type one and type two diabetes.  Here are some of my favourites that I can recall but honestly I get at least one new comment every week at least.

Monday, 23 April 2012

Insulin in General

Insulin in General

I don't know a whole lot about insulin so I will only relate what my experience with it is.  Everyone's body is completely different so please follow your Dr's instructions to a T.

I am using Humalog as a fast acting insulin. (This is what you will hear people refer to as "bolus".)  I take this before breakfast, lunch, supper, and depending on how my blood glucose is before my night time snack.  This insulin helps the body take care of the sugars that I am consuming through food.  I use carb counting as my method of deciding my dose.  There are many other methods to determine your dose and your Dr or diabetes educator should be able to go over these with you.  For example, the first two weeks of diagnosis I had to eat 75 carbs per meal and take 8 units of Humalog with each meal. It is not easy to eat 75g of carbs for breakfast and lunch in a healthy way!  That's a lot of food!    After that nightmare we switched to carb counting. I will write more about carb counting in another post.  For me it made my life a whole lot easier.

I use Levemir as my long lasting insulin.  (This is what you will hear people refer to as "basal".)  I am lucky my insurance covers Levemir as I understand not all policies do.  This insulin lasts about 22-24 hours.  I take it at 10 pm. (The same time I do my night time blood glucose monitoring.  The same time I have a night time snack if I am going to have one. That is my evening routine.)  The reason to take this type of insulin is to take care of the glucose that your body naturally produces throughout the day.  I started taking 28 units of the Levemir.  Now after about 8 months I am at 40 units per night.  With that increase my HBA1C has dropped as well.

Sunday, 22 April 2012

Dealing With Blood Glucose Management in Public

Dealing With Blood Glucose Management in Public

I take my man bag everywhere I go. In it I carry my insulin (both Levemir and Humalog), dex tablets, testing kit, hand sanitizer and a few snacks. I also put my wallet and car key in the bag so I can not leave the house without my kit.  In full disclosure, that was my wife's idea, she is much better at figuring out little tricks like that than I am.  

I just monitor my glucose wherever I am. If other people don't like it, tough luck. I am not pricking their finger! 

I am a Financial Advisor and have tested in front of clients before while in meetings because I was feeling low or high. In general, people understand.  If they don't, then I explain it to them.  I don't flaunt it and lay my hand out on the desk so they can see all the details, I just turn to the side and do it. 

If we are out with friends or if I am just out with my wife at supper I do my insulin injection right at the table in the  restaurant. Most people don't notice and if they do they don't care.  Again, if it bothers them, tough luck. They aren't the ones who get to stab themselves with a needle 4-5 times a day. I have also injected at rock concerts (both Foo Fighters and Pearl Jam), professional sports games, on airplanes, etc. I have a disease, I have to treat it.  That is all there is to it.

Now it is totally different if it makes YOU uncomfortable.  If you feel as though you can't do this sort of thing in front of people then find a private place and do it.  Eventually, it will probably become second nature and you will think nothing of monitoring and managing your glucose levels in front of others.

In all likelihood, monitoring and managing your glucose will extend your lifespan and your quality of life.  It is nothing to be ashamed of, just make sure it gets done one way or the other.

Saturday, 21 April 2012

Pictures of Diabetic Retinopathy

Pictures of Diabetic Retinopathy

As promised, here are pictures of my eyes from my latest visit to the ophthalmologist...


This is an image of one of my retina's.  In the lower right hand corner you can see my ophthalmologist's cursor pointing at a small black spot.  This spot is a small pool of blood in the retina.  This is not what you want to see.  If you look throughout the picture you can see about 30 of these spots. (not trying to get you to play "Where's Waldo", just trust me.  Any dark spots are blood.  Thus my Dr. diagnosed me with severe diabetic retinopathy (one of the major diabetic complications.)  Where we have to worry is if blood vessels start growing around these spots.  If that happens it can lead to many more complications including blindness.  The good thing is if you see your ophthalmologist as much as you are supposed to these sort of complications can be avoided and blindness prevented.

Thursday, 19 April 2012

Juvenile Diabetes Diagnosis

Juvenile Diabetes Diagnosis

In the past two weeks I have heard of two young people diagnosed with type 1 diabetes.  Both were in grade 4.  One was my wife's colleague's daughter, the other a daughter of my mother's friend.  I know the amount of stress getting my diagnosis was for my wife and I and our families.  I could not imagine what goes through a parents mind when their 10 year old child is diagnosed.  It has got to be an extremely stressful situation for the parent to say the least.  For the child I imagine it must be a very confusing and scary time in their lives.  It is stories like this that make me extremely grateful that I had 30 or so non diabetic years of my life.

The good news is there is more information out there about treatment of type 1 diabetes than there ever has been before.  Hopefully these parents are getting this information in a timely fashion from proper health care providers. 

Tuesday, 17 April 2012

Ophthalmologist Appointment Today

Ophthalmologist Appointment Today

Well, I had my appt at the eye specialist today.  It went pretty well actually.  The recovery from it was a little weird this time as my eyes were extra sensitive to light.  It wasn't bad though, I just went home and put on my sunglasses and had a nap.

As for my results... the Dr. said that there was not that much change but he did upgrade me to severe diabetic retinopathy.  Before I only had moderate.  He said that it was right on the edge so not too much change to worry about.  He said that really he could have diagnosed me with severe the first time.  He said since my HBA1C was currently at 6.5 he didn't think there would be much progression.  That is what we want at this point.  It can't be reversed so we just need to stop the progression. 

It is very rare for a newly diagnosed type 1 diabetic to have this sort of complication.  Most experts recommend that type 1 diabetics have an appointment with the ophthalmologist 5 years after they are diagnosed.  I don't want to go against any Dr's advice or anything but I had only been diagnosed for less than 6 months when they discovered my retinopathy.  That being said, if you can get a referral to an ophthalmologist right after you are diagnosed and your insurance will pay for it or it isn't overly costly I would suggest you try to see one as soon as possible.  At least then you will know that you are safe for the time being.

After I get my retinal scans I will post them to this blog as they might be sort of interesting or enlightening for some people. 

Monday, 16 April 2012

In relation to worst hypo ever post...

In relation to worst hypoglycemic episode ever post...

Check out this link...

Again, a good reason to have a medic alert bracelet or something similar.  This is a scary story.

Sunday, 15 April 2012

Ophthalmologist Appointment Tuesday

Ophthalmologist Appointment Tuesday

Well, I have an appointment with my ophthalmologist Tuesday.  Hopefully they have good news for me that my retinopathy has not progressed.  It is quite the appointment though for those of you who have not experienced one.  They freeze your eye, then they measure the pressure inside your eye.  Then in go the eye drops to dilate your pupils.  They continue to take all sorts of fancy pictures and shine all sorts of lights in your eyes.   Ask you all sorts of crazy questions.  The great news about these appointments is that there is no pain whatsoever.

One big tip though... bring your sunglasses!!!  Your eyes are super sensitive to light after going through this procedure because the pupils are dilated.  Also, you will need to have someone to drive you from the appointment.  Your vision may not normalize for a few hours after having the pupils dilated.

Wish me luck!

Saturday, 14 April 2012

Importance of Wearing a Medic Alert Bracelet

As per my previous post...

Once you are diagnosed with diabetes, get a medic alert bracelt!  There are lots of different styles and options.  I don't know if it would have helped me in my hypoglycemic situation in Italy but it couldn't have hurt.

My Worst Hypoglycemic Episode Ever

My Worst Hypoglycemic Episode Ever

As ridiculous as it sounds, I was very lucky to have a very serious diabetic related infection.  That is how I discovered I had type 1 diabetes.

In my first post, I detailed the way I found out about the diabetes.  Looking back, I was extremely lucky to have almost died from that infection.  Unfortunately, I also had a near death experience a few weeks before as well... 

If not for the infection my diagnosis would have been further delayed and I would have continued to think I was going crazy from lack of energy, mood swings and strange hypoglycemic experiences.  Some of those experiences can be absolutely crazy and totally unnerving...

Looking back on it now I can see a pattern of hypoglycemic episodes from before my diagnosis.  All of the sudden I would feel extremely irritated, nauseous, and anxious.  These would happen on almost a daily basis.  I should have known something was up but my doctor at the time said it was just an anxiety disorder.  Really, these were just minor in comparison to another experience, my worst hypoglycemic experience ever...

Friday, 13 April 2012

Diabetic Complication #6 Mental Health

Diabetic Complication #6  Mental Health

Some studies suggest that people with diabetes are more than twice as likely to have depression than someone without diabetes.  We are also at a higher risk to experience anxiety than people without diabetes.  Just something to watch out for.  I know that it is extremely common for people to have anxiety about their needles or their glucose or A1C test results. (Yes, I know I said test).

I went and am still going to a counsellor who has helped me with coping mechanisms for my diabetes.  It is a huge life change and it is worth talking to someone about it.  If you are lucky enough to have a caring spouse they can listen to a fair amount and give you advice on things.  Though, the fact is, it is not fair to them to bare so much of the burden of you having diabetes.  In fact, it may be stressful for them and they may wish to seek out some help as well.

Diabetic Complications #5 Infections

Diabetic Complications #5 Infections

Unfortunately people with diabetes are more prone to infections than people without diabetes.  Diabetes is after all an autoimmune disorder.  As discussed in my previous post, your feet and legs are especially prone to infection.  That is why it is so important to give them the once over everyday. 

I told one of my friends who is a dentist that I had Type 1 Diabetes and he told me to get into the dentist asap to get things checked out.  Apparently, oral health is extremely important when dealing with diabetes.  I was shocked!

Your chance of having more oral problems jumps when you are a diabetic.  My personal dentist recommended that I now see him once every 4 months instead of once every 6.  He just said we needed to keep a closer eye on things and make sure nothing gets out of hand.  If there is an oral infection it can easily spread into your bloodstream he explained.  Then he found a cavity!  My first!  ahhhh.

I was told the main thing to do when you have an infection is to treat it immediately.  Infections are much more serious for diabetics as they can and usually do spike your blood sugar levels.  I was also told to step up my monitoring when I had an infection to once every couple of hours.  If it gets too high I am to call my diabetic nurse immediately.  They can help determine what to do from there. 

To prevent infections I was told the usual "keep your blood sugar under control."  Shocking!!!!
Also, I was told to get the flu shot every year (not bad) and to get immunized for pneumonia (a little worse, ouch!) 

One last word on infections... ketones.  It is important to measure your ketones and make sure they are not too high.  If they are, call your Dr. immediately.  Checking them is very easy.  You just pee on a stick.  How fun!

Diabetic Complication #4 Nerve Disorders

Diabetic Complication #4 Nerve Disorders

This is what most people think of when they think of diabetic complications.  I know it is the first thing I thought of when I learned of my diagnosis.  What I did not realise is that it can come in many forms.  I am not going to get into all the different issues with all of the nerve disorders but they are very important to know about so you can report any symptoms to your doctor.

Peripheral ( tingling, numbing, feeling hot or cold in your hands and feet).
Autonomic (this is damage to autonomic nerves that control things such as digestion, genital issues, skin problems, and a host of others.)

Again, the best way to prevent neuropathy is... you guessed it... blood sugar control.  Tests have shown that people who keep their A1C below 7 can reduce their odds of getting neuropathy by up to 60%.  Exercise is also very important to keep your blood flowing and getting to your extremities.

One important thing to know is that this is where people run into problems with their feet.  This is where the horror stories you hear about amputations come from.  It is extremely important to have your doctor/endocrinologist check your feet every time you see them.  Take your shoes off every time you get in the office.  That will make it hard for the doctor to forget to do the exam.

As a diabetic, you have to take responsibility in checking your feet as well.  Take a quick look at them every night before you go to bed.  I just look and make sure I don't see anything that looks a little strange.  If you think about it, if you have nerve damage, you will not be able to feel pain that someone without diabetes would feel.  If you don't check your feet and there is something going on down there, it could go on for months without you realising it.  By then it could be too late.

Also, please don't try to do any home bathroom surgeries on your feet.  You know what I am talking about!  Yanking out hangnails etc.  Go see a podiatrist, they can take care of these things properly.

One last thing on this topic for now...  in no way am I suggesting that if someone has needed some sort of amputation or other treatments in regards to their nerve disorders that it is their fault.  The sad thing is sometimes things happen that we can't prevent.  I am just trying to do my best at preventing complications.

Diabetic Complication #3 Kidney Disease (Nephropathy)

Diabetic Complication #3 Kidney Disease (Nephropathy)

Luckily, I have no experience with this complication at this point in time.  No one knows the exact cause of Nephropathy but they do know what helps cause it  Basically, high blood pressure and high blood glucose cause damage to the kidneys.  At this point they can no longer filter  and remove waste and fluids from the body. 

The best way to try to prevent Nephropathy is to keep your blood glucose under control.  Also, blood pressure control is very important.  I expect you are starting to see a theme here.  Keeping your blood glucose under control is extremely important, after all, that is the root of the disease known as diabetes.  Again, the easiest way for me to keep my blood sugar under control is constant monitoring.

Funny and Sad story about the opthalmologist visit

My wife and I were sitting in our car after getting out of the ophthalmologist visit.  We had just discovered that I had moderate diabetic retinopathy.  We both got in the car and said "Well, that was a pretty good visit.  Nothing but good news there." 

It took about 5 minutes or so but then I finally realised "Our standards for good news have gone way down over the past few months." 

Funny, yet sad.  You just have to take things as they come. 

Diabetic Complication #2 Eye Problems

Diabetic Complication #2  Eye Problems

Unfortunately, this is something I have personal experience with as well.  It is very rare for a new diabetic to have eye problems but I hit the jackpot!  In reality most diabetics will experience some form of eye problems over their lifetime.  Again, if you keep on top of it you can help prevent it or slow it's progression.

I have something called Moderate Diabetic Retinopathy.  The way my ophthalmologist explained it to me is that the blood vessels in the retina are leaking.  As it stands now I just have the see the ophthalmologist on a rolling 3 month basis to make sure it is not progressing. 

If it is progressing... then I go in for laser surgery.  The way I see it is at least this will stop the damage.  I actually feel lucky because if this would have been 30 years ago my possibility of blindness would be extremely high.  Now it is almost non-existent because of the new technology that has been developed. 

Diabetic complication #1 Heart and Stroke

Diabetic complication #1 Heart and Stroke

Unfortunately this is a major compication for diabetics.  I know it directly effected myself.  During probably my 3rd blood test after diagnosis they realised my overall cholesterol was at about 9.  They didn't believe that number and had it retested.  It came back pretty much the same.  The goal for diabetics is to have it below 4.

I was already eating fairly healthy so they decided to put me on a statin.  My Dr. recommended Crestor, so we went with that, 5 mg. a day.  After about 2 months my cholesterol had dropped to about 5.  I am now on 10 mg of Crestor and it has dropped to about 4.5. 

I also take fish oil to try to raise my good cholesterol (HDL).  I take 1000 mg twice a day. 

Regardless of what your levels are realise that there are things you can do to help prevent these complications.  Could be exercise, diet, sipplements, or all 3 plus anything else your Dr. recommends.   Of course, if you are smoking... QUIT!!!!

One common thing that helps all of the main diabetic complications is keeping your blood glucose under control.  Again, this reiterates the great importance of monitoring your blood glucose regularly.

Thursday, 12 April 2012

The importance of HBA1C

HBA1C is a number you will hear about a lot when you are a diabetic. Without getting too scientific... It is basically a way to measure what your average blood glucose has been over the past 2-3 months. Usually they want you to get the test done every 3 months but when you are initially diagnosed it can be asked for more frequently. It isn't a big hassle, just a simple blood test. Now they even have meters for them although the word is still out on how accurate they are. My endocrinologist says that for most type 1 diabetics anything under 7.0 HBA1C is good. 6.5 is better of course. The lower your A1C the less chance you have of experiencing complications is what the medical community advocates. They don't want it to be too low though because that is probably a sign that you are having too many lows. In my books that is just more motivation to monitor your glucose on a regular basis!   I will keep a record of my A1C's in this blog under "My A1C Journal".

The Importance of the Dreaded Finger Prick

If you have recently been diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes then I am sure that it has been explained to you that you the need to test your blood sugar.  One thing... it helps if you don't think of it as "testing", think of it as "monitoring".  There is a negative connotation to the word testing that can and will effect your mood. 

"Oh no, I have high/low blood sugar and I did everything I was supposed to.  What am I doing wrong?"  This or something like it is probably I said to myself once a day for the first month of monitoring.  The answer to my internal question/ self accusation is... probably I am not doing anything wrong.  It is just your body getting used to things... new hormones, new drugs, new eating schedule, etc.  Unfortunately, adjusting insulin and blood sugar levels is not an exact science.   

For the first couple of months I was monitoring about 8 times per day.  Before and after each meal as well as before bed.  Also, about once a week I would get up at around 3 a.m. to make sure I wasn't low.

It sounds like a lot but don't worry.

You only have to do the monitoring in the middle of the night for the first little while.  You will know sooner than later if you are having lows while you sleep.  It is important to know this as you do not want to go into hypoglycemia and not even know it!  Also, it is important to monitor before and after meals to understand that your insulin regimen is working.  Again, after a few months you can probably scale it back to monitoring just before meals and occasionally after meals.

I have a personal rule that I test everynight when I take my long lasting insulin at 10 p.m.  If my sugar is a little low then I have a small snack.  If my sugar is high then I know if I need a snack that I will have to take some short acting isulin with it. 

I also have a rule, (this one istituted by my loving wife) that I test before I drive.  I do think this is imperative as someone driving their vehicle when they are low is no different safety wise than someone driving drunk.  Safety first folks! 

Blood Glucose Monitoring

One thing I found out about glucose monitoring is that it is expensive as a drug problem. I am not kidding. You have a monitor, lancets to prick your finger and above all... test strips.

Pharmaceutical companies are making huge dollars off diabetes. I never noticed before but if you go into a pharmacy, look at the main display wall. I guarantee you 75% of it is diabetic products.

The only real tip I have on cost saving for a new diabetic is DO NOT BUY A METER. Notice I DID NOT SAY do not use a meter. A meter will become your ultimate ally in your journey with diabetes.

Nearly all of the drug companies have programs where they will give you a meter for free. They can usually be found online. Just check the major companies like Accu-Chek or Bayer Contour's websites. I found links to free meters on their sites in minutes. I will post those links in the "helpful links" page. Even ask the pharmacist, I have seen it many times where you buy the meter and then get a mail in rebate for the price. If that fails, at your local diabetes clinic or the hospital where you were diagnosed they may have a meter to give you.

That's the good news... the bad news is the price of the tests strips. They are insanely expensive but coupons can be found for them as well if you do not have insurance. You can basically equate blood glucose monitors to computer printers. Computer companies make their money off the ink and cartridges, pharmaceutical companies make their money off the strips.

Diabetic Complications

Diabetic Complications From what I have learned there are some major potential complications with diabetes. These include kidney function, eye damage, circulation issues, increased heart and stroke risk, increased risk of infection and mental health issues, The great news is that the chances of getting many of these complications can be minimized by having good blood sugar control. The horror stories that you have heard over the past 25 years are not nearly as common as they once were. I have had experiences with some of these complications and I will share them in upcoming posts.

Wednesday, 11 April 2012

What is Diabetes?

After the initial shock of learning my diagnosis I went into full on research mode.  I realised I needed to answer the basic question... what is diabetes?   Well, I already knew that there was Type 1 Diabetes and Type 2 Diabetes.  I did not realise that an adult could be diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes.  I also did not realise that there was gestational diabetes that occurs in pregnant women. 

I also thought of Type 1 Diabetes as the one where you had to take insulin.  As I would find through my research many type 2 diabetics also need insulin. 

To simplify what I learned, with Type 1 Diabetes certain cells in the pancreas had quit producing insulin, thus the need for injections.

With Type 2 Diabetes there could be a number of issues... maybe the pancreas has slowed down the production of insulin or maybe the body wasn't responding to insulin the way it should. 

I read probably 20 books on diabetes over the next week.  In future posts I will go over what books I found most helpful.  I discovered it was an extremely complicated disease and that even though it is so prevalent there are still a lot of unknowns when it comes to the causes and treatments of diabetes.  Now they are even saying there is a Type 3 or Type 2.5.

After my initial research my brain was a little full to put it lightly. 

It was actually quite stressful realising that there could be serious complications if I did not take my diabetes seriously.  Also, even if I did take it seriously there are still no guarantees that something bad won't happen.  There never are though... that is life.  I could get hit by a bus, attacked by a raging wolverine, or get another, far more debilitating illness.  Things need to be kept in perspective.

First appointment with the endo

I was extremely nervous sitting in the waiting room at the endocrinologist's office.  I was with my wife who is fortunately extremely supportive.  The Dr. ran through my tests and basically told us that I had type 1 Diabetes and there were 3 ways I could react to it...

1.) Go numb.  Do nothing.  Suffer nasty diabetic complications...
2.) Let it take over my life, become a hermit and a slave to my diabetes.
3.) Take care of myself but still try to live as normal of a life as possible.  Continue to enjoy life to it's fullest.

Obviously #3 is the best option but it is not always that easy.  I think I experienced all 3 of these options in my first day of being diagnosed.  Possibly within the first hour. 

My wife and I went down to the hospital cafeteria and bought some sandwiches for lunch.  (Are sandwiches ok for type 1 diabetics?   Yes!!!  Bread?  No problem!!!). My head was still spinning from all of the info I had been given over the past two hours from the Dr., nurse and nutritionist.  I took out my glucose testing kit, set it up, pricked my finger and that was that.  Easy.

I sat there and took out my Humalog insulin pen, attached a needle to the end of it.  That is as far as I got.  It all sort of hit me at once, I will be doing this for every meal for the rest of my life.  I can't stand needles.  I know everyone says that but with me it is to an extreme.  (When I was in kindergarten we went to the hospital on a field trip.  The nurses gave a teddy bear a needle to show how harmless they were.  I promptly fainted.)   I sat there in the cafeteria at the hospital for about 10 minutes trying to get up the nerve to put this needle into my stomach so I could eat my sandwich.  I had a few tears, as a grown man, 30 years old this is not a regular occurrence at lunch.  Especially in a public place.  Especially when there are people around you who you know are way worse off.  So, I didn't take the needle and ate my sandwich and we quickly left.  I am happy to say that was the first and hopefully the last time I skip an injection.

1st post... The beginning

Aug. 8, 2011, the first day that I was diagnosed as a type 1 diabetic. 

Into my world enters my new lifelong friends Levemir, Humalog, Crestor, Wellbutrin, Cymbalta, and a whole host of other supplements.  A whole new world of HBA1C tests, glucose tests and worst of all injections 5 times a day. 

What have I gotten myself into?

The truth is that I didn't get myself into anything.  This diagnosis was not my fault and there is nothing I could do about it.  I have it... time to deal with it.  At least that is how my endocrinologist put it.  Easier said than done.

How did all this start?  I went into an emergency room with a sore throat.  Not a normal sore throat but it felt like someone was holding a lighter to my throat.  The Dr. did a scope and said I needed to go to the larger university hospital immediately.  Why?  I asked.  His reply "Well, you are ok now but you could be dead in 20 minutes if this thing swells up."  Umm, ok.  Into the ambulance I go.  I was in the ICU for a week.  Throughout that week they were testing all sorts of things including my blood sugar which was slightly elevated.  They thought it was because of the infection. 

Then the endo gets involved and has some blood taken and tested.  I had an A1C of about 15.  He says he is sorry but I am definitely a type 1 diabetic. 

And so it begins...