Skip to main content

IPAs vs. CGMs

Sometimes being an engineer encourages thoughts beyond what is available today, at this moment. And lately, those engineering thoughts in my brain have focused on Diabetes technology, or lack-there-of. Don't get me wrong...I am constantly strapped to a $5,000 insulin pump which can deliver insulin in extremely minute amounts; and my purse contains a blood glucose meter that can check my blood sugar in 5 seconds (much better than the 40 seconds when I was first diagnosed 11 years ago!); and not only that, but the meter wirelessly "chats" with my insulin pump about my current blood sugar readings, and the pump responds with his own "recommendations." And this is all much, much better than those first two years of scheduled injections (via syringe...ugh...that word is just horrible sounding), limited carb intake, mandatory snacks at prescribed times, and of course those 40 second blood sugar tests (40 seconds is a long time to wait, trust me).

But how far have we really come since 1998?


In my opinion, not far enough. In fact I would venture to say my first insulin pump, the Minimed 508 (in aqua blue!) was far superior than my current Paradigm pump in regards to hardware. Without getting too boring, I will just say, sometimes simple is better.


My Paradigm software however, seems much improved which relates to better control; but I think the next significant step in Type-1 Diabetes control is the CGM (continous glucose monitoring). Holly, loves hers...a Dexcom version with accompanying "egg." And Minimed has their own version. But so far I am not impressed......at least not impressed enough to deal with another injection site every week. I had a painful experience with the i-Pro, and the calibration struggles (calibration lasts a whole day?!) do not put the CGM at the top of my list at the moment. Really, I don't understand why some great ENGINEERS can't design a site that incorporates both the insulin pump injection and the wireless blood sugar monitor....annnnnddd....incorporate the readings into 1 reporting location (i.e. the insulin pump). Apparently Minimed is working on this issue, and maybe (hopefully!) it will work out, because I really want better control...but, I also want to be able to wear a sundress without hesitation and without Diabetes (or the leftovers...i.e. injection adhesive) stuck all over my body, thankyouverymuch. Oh, and drink beer without the "highs" side-effect...see below: (hopefully you get it ;-)


And if worst comes to worst...I will just sign up for one of these sweet-ass tatoos! [preferrably in the shape of rocket...not "heart"...ugh...]

Comments

  1. I love IPAs, but they send my bg's into outer space!

    (See what I did there?)

    ReplyDelete
  2. Wow, a girl with the same heart for puns! SA--WEEETTT! Pun, intended!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Yeah, sometimes the calibration is a PIA (hehe). Like just now, Constance said I was 221 when my meter said I was 138?! But I just changed my sensor yesterday, so I'm not freaking out over what Constance tells me.

    And the sticky issue with the stickies is annoying. I can usually spend sometime with rubbing alcohol and get them all off, but I agree a combo CGM and pump site would be awesome!

    I know a CGM seems like a lot of trouble, but I'd much rather deal with the inconveniences so I can know what my BG is up to 24/7. I'm also slightly OCD, but that's a whole 'nother post.

    You know what else would be nice? A freakin' CURE!

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Who has two thumbs and loves comments? Nerdy April!!! Type one out and hit publish!

Popular posts from this blog

The road to curing Type 1 Diabetes

From the moment of diagnosis, the road is rough, the learning curve is steep and the stakes are literally life or death. The map is less-than-helpful - paths originating from virtually every corner, coalescing at a center point (aka "diagnosis") and bursting back outwards - some paths cross and wrap around each other but others are isolated. And even with all of these roads, most of the territory is uncharted - how did we all get here and how will we all exit? Where are the obstacles we haven't found yet? Which passage holds the key to unlocking the solution?

On any given day I feel pretty isolated with this disease - I'm the only T1D in my group at work, the only one in mission control, the only one in my family. I go through the logistics of calling insurance companies, ordering supplies, changing sites and troubleshooting malfunctions mostly on my own. Even those pesky carbs really only get counted in my brain, no group think for a meal bolus here. But there is b…

International Travel with Type 1 Diabetes

Whew! Back from one international trip and on to another next week! I will admit my eyes roll every time I get the "we're gunna need to pat you down" talk at TSA, but international travel is a whole different animal. I thought it might be fun to see what goes through my brain and into my bags for these types of trips!


I wouldn't be a NASA Flight Controller if I wasn't good at planning, the key to international travel as a T1D is PLANNING!

3 months prior

Assess supplies. Mine come in 90-days supplies so I like to inventory at least 3 months prior and make a plan to order more early if the trip is going to coincide with the end of my 90-day stock. In my experience supply companies are usually pretty good about adjusting orders as needed if you tell them the reason for the early request - just mention you have an international trip coming up and want to make sure to have plenty of supplies (and backups!) in time. Request a loaner insulin pump. It's likely the comp…

Hot OJT

Last week I had the chance to mentor a newly certified ADCO trainee - the NASA process is called "Hot On-The-Job-Training", or Hot OJT. What makes it "hot" you ask? Well, essentially I am hands off - he is sitting at the console, working all the plan reviews and updates, making calls to other flight controllers and to the flight director, reacting to anomalies and preparing material for the shift handover. My job is to act as the fault tolerance - a backup ADCO of sorts.

Tuesday was his last official day and by Wednesday morning he was in the backroom sending commands to ISS in preparation for the docking of a three-person Soyuz.


The beauty of this system is the gradual buildup in responsibility. There is a subtle shift from student, to subject matter expert, to fresh operations trainee to advanced trainee and finally to certification and real-time operations flight controller - the process takes two years on average and is considered by many to be enough specializ…
01 09 10