Blood Work

Blood Work

I do not mind getting blood work done. Goodness knows I get enough done to float a boat. Between A1C’s, Rheumatoid factors, fasting blood sugars, various heart related tests and the obligatory Kidney test (urine and Blood) I get plenty of poking. But the one test I truly hate, I mean hate (did I mention hate?) is the cholesterol test. Now why should I care? Well first of all, my last one was bad. I mean not just elevated or out of range like the Rheumatoid Factor or the creation ratio is, no I mean bad.

Now usually my cholesterol is fine. But last time out of the blue my cholesterol went from really, really good to off the charts bad. I have a minor blockage that was found during a Cardiac catheterization back in 2006. By minor I mean the doctor said she thought it to be 20% to 30% blocked. So small in fact she did not even want to ‘keep an eye on it’. To her it was like listen dude you have been Diabetic for 35 years (then) and this is all you have we will not worry about it too much.

Of course then I had the open heart surgery (to correct a genetic abnormality) and she said look, just for safety let’s do biannual cholesterol screening. Well that sounds ok, I mean another blood draw, ahh what’s another one? Well from that point on my cholesterol has been really good. I mean it was so good. It even amazed me. Except last time

Last time I went per usual grumbling about the test (I hate the fasting for anything) and then the results. I got an interesting voice mail to call my cardiologist and speak to someone I had never heard of. She said my numbers were not good this time. Not good? I asked, commenting that my numbers are always good.

Not this time she said. My LDL had climbed to 190, it is usually less than 70, HDL was 23 I am usually 37-41, and my total cholesterol was above 200, I am usually between 100 and 120. Wow, I said man that seems sort of high. Yes she replied, we need to see you right away in the something lab. Crazy tunes.

So I was scheduled to see the doctor in the next couple of weeks and we discussed many thing, but of course in addition to weight it was this cholesterol test. She said that if it was not an aberration than I would need to start some kind of intense therapy thing. Oh man, just what I need more therapy.

So I got to thinking about things and it dawned on me I had recently started a new therapy and I wondered, if that had elevated my cholesterol. Turns out this new medicine, now get ready for it ‘testosterone’ elevates cholesterol in some people. WOW, well I called the doctor and she agreed it might have ‘skewed’ the results. Skewed? Skewed results? Give me a break.

So we decided to take limited action, stop the testosterone, and wait 6 months. So today was six months. Six months and yesterday the letter arrived telling me time was up. Test time. I see the cardiologist on the 20th so no time like the present. So I ponied up this morning and headed out first thing.

Getting to the testing place was like going through a war zone of construction. I have to admit I thought to myself, wow you know if this test is bad I have anger to blame, what with all the construction stuff going on around the lab. Then when I got to the lab it had not opened as yet, I met the lab tech in the hallway as she sung a happy tune. Happy tunes at 7 AM, ah not allowed. I got everything done, breathed a sigh of relief and left.

Then something wonderful happened. Six deer grazing alongside the road construction meandered up on to the road. These little fawns and one doe were so oblivious to morning rush hour traffic they just grazed aimlessly. It was neither a usual or unusual sight. But not one I expected in the middle of a massive road project. I guess it put things in perspective. These deer neither worried about good or bad cholesterol, they didn’t test, they don’t watch blood sugar, after all they really don’t care.

True, life is cheap for a deer. Let’s face it we hunt them, hit them run them off, but today I and maybe 15 other drivers had to stop to let them pass. I was sad I missed the photo, because it was extraordinary. Instead I substituted a stock photo of a fawn and a doe for this note. Just like in this photo one of the fawns nuzzled his mom wherever she went. It reminds me that life does go on. Even for diabetics, who hate cholesterol testing. Even for me.



Check out this company - THERANOS - they can do blood work from a tiny amount of blood...not vials!

thanks Stress, but I do not mind the draw as much as the fasting. Its that darn fasting I hate. LOL thanks for the tip however, if my veins go south again I may check them out. Thanks for the comment..............rick

I had a different difficulty with cholesterol test last week. I am supposed to show up at 8:30AM for a fasting blood test, which is hard for me (take enough insulin that dawn phenomenon doesn't send me stratospheric but don't go hypo). But I've done it enough times that I thought I had the routine down pretty good.

So I wake up at 85, take my Lantus and two units of Humalog which has worked in the past. Get on the bus, my bg is 121, not too bad. Transfer to train. Get off train, check again, my bg is 88, doing pretty good! Then I show up for 8:15 bloodwork, make a note I have an appointment, and wait. And wait. And wait. By 9:00 they finally are ready for me. Get the blood drawn, pee in the cup, good. Then I walk out, starving like crazy because (I thought) I hadn't eaten breakfast, and check my bg with my meter. 33. 33? Yes 33. Anyway I'm starving so head next door to get breakfast.

Then the next day at work... doc calls. Yes, he's worried that my bg was 30 according to the lab test. Yes, I explain what happened. Yes, fasting lab tests are hard. Yes, I will be careful to not have hypos. I think the doc eventually figured out that me showing up for fasting tests is a lot of work.

With MDI and taking several shots daily, testing several times daily, B12 shots weekly, and Labs--that old cliche about being a pin cushion holds true. Fortunately my doctor doesn't ask for fasting too often, that's just a killer.