Tuesday, October 25, 2011

T1 Tuesdays: The latest endocrinologist visit and some fun new tools!!

Yesterday was our quarterly visit with Ashlyn's endocrinologist team.
It has been just over 2 months since we began using the Dexcom continuous glucose monitoring system.
It has been such an amazing tool for us, and I was really hoping that because we are able to react sooner to either a high or low blood sugar, that we would have a much better A1C this visit.
For those of you just joining the Type 1 conversation, the A1C is a blood test that measures the average blood glucose readings over the last 3 months.
In July, Ashlyn's A1C was 8.5%.
That was the highest it has been since her diagnosis in February 2009.
We started using the Dexcom in August, and yesterday her A1C was still at 8.3%.
Normal ranges are anywhere from 5% to 6%.

We saw a nurse practitioner who we've never seen before, and she was very encouraging.
She explained something to me that I'd never heard before.....in all our other meetings with our endocrinologist or other nurse practitioners.
I expressed to her my concern that Ashlyn's blood glucose numbers are like a roller coaster.....constantly spiking up and down.....and we just can't get control of them.
I would much rather see a straight line of constant numbers than the spiking.
She reassured me that it's normal even in non-diabetics to have your blood sugar go up and down. 
It's just that our bodies regulate the insulin and glucagon all by itself.
Her body has to pull from the external medications that we give it.
What we want to do is not worry about the spiking, but to bring down the baseline average.
To do that, we change up her Lantus doses.
As of last night, she is taking 17 units of Lantus at bedtime, and 16 units at breakfast.
We also tweaked her mealtime Humalog ratios and she is at 1:5 for breakfast, 1:4 for lunch, and 1:3 at dinner.
In the last 12 months, she has grown 3 inches and gained 5 pounds.
She hasn't crashed into puberty yet, but I am bracing myself for even crazier numbers when that happens!!

I also wanted to share some really wonderful tools we've discovered to help us manage her Dexcom.
One of the tricky things about this system is that you have to keep the receiver {which is roughly the size of a computer mouse} within 5 feet of you to get accurate readings every 5 minutes.
If you set it down and walk into the next room to play for an hour, the meter is unable to read and then you have to wait for it to sync back up once you're in range again.
I also worried that my 11-year old would leave it somewhere and we'd never find it again.
So I looked around online and found these fantastic "pump bands" HERE.
We ordered one to use as a template, and then my mother-in-law made some more for her {yay, Grandma!}

With the leftover fabric, she also made her a
"pump pillow"!!
This way you don't loose the pump in the covers or on the floor at night.
It has it's own little cushioned spot!!
How sweet is THAT?!?!

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