Sunday, December 05, 2010

The soon--to-be bionic boy...

Middle has been a T1D for over a year now.  We're getting the hang of it, but then something else changes and we are back to playing catch up.  If only A + B always equalled C, things would be so much easier - same stuff in, same result.  As anyone with diabetes knows, though, that never happens.  There is too much going on behind the scenes to allow for any predictability, except forgetting to cover will mean sugars that are too high, and forgetting to eat will mean sugars that are too low.  The rest is, for lack of a better term, a crap shoot.

One of Middle's biggest problems is that he is not a 3-meals-a-day kind of kid; never has been.  He likes to graze.  This causes havoc when you are counting carbs, covering with insulin, doing the math to see how much insulin he may still have on board, etc.  Again, crap shoot.

So, we're moving to embrace techology.  This coming week we will meet with the trainer from OmniPod and DexCom so Middle can be suited up with an insulin pump and a continuous glucose monitor.  He's excited, and from what we have heard in speaking with others who have gone down this road before us, it will change his life. 

As it stands now, Middle must test his sugars between 8 and 10 times a day, and that's if all looks good.  If his sugars are off, he may need to test every 15 minutes until they are back to normal and that can take an hour or more.  The monitor will take a reading every 5 minutes through a sensor that will be embedded under his skin.  He will still need to calibrate it every 12 hours, but that's 2 sticks, not 10!

Then there is the insulin, which he injects at least 5 times a day, again, sometimes more depending on what his sugars are doing.  The pump will be automatically giving him a basal rate of insulin all day, and then will automatically bolus him for food when he tells the hand held device that controls the pump to do so.  It will also tell him how much insulin is 'live' in his system so we don't give too much and have him crash from too much insulin.

I'm excited for him.  We train like mad fiends on Thursday.  He could be the bionic boy by Christmas day!!


Bren said...

Wow, I had no idea he had to do SO much. Poor guy. I hope this helps you all immensely!

Lorraine of "This is Caleb..." said...

Good luck to you! My son, Caleb, is T1D for almost 4 yrs and has been using OmniPod most of that time. He's also used DexCom for over a year. If you need someone else to troubleshoot with as Middle becomes bionic, feel free to give me a shout!