Get your Glucagon Rescue kit before you discover you wish you had done so

Pic stolen from wiki. I don't think anybody cares. This is educational use.

I strongly recommend a glucagon recovery kit for any PWD with high risk of SH. Also, anybody habituated to SH who can't feel the SH at around 50 mg/dl, should have the kit imho. I don't think it's necessary to use until numbers in the upper 30's. Others may differ on this view. That's my personal standard. I don't mean to tell anyone what they should do. It's your call.

Also, anybody taking Symlin best have this on hand since you cannot eat your way out of SH on Symlin until nearly 3 hours after the dose. It should be a mandatory second script for those of us using Symlin.

My lowest number on home meter in last year was 41 mg/dl = 2.3 mM last month. That's clearly SH but not a hospital visit for me. So I didn't use the kit. However, the whole idea is to save your life and also to avoid an ER trip. Timing is the issue.

There are two kits in US. It's not low cost. Medicare copayment at 20% was $68.00 to me. If memory is correct the box is red for the E.L. brand or orange for the other by Novo. OptumRX mail orders the E.L. brand only.

In case anybody doesn't know, you reconstitute the powder in the vial with the water in the syringe and use half or the whole thing. Use much less for kids, obviously. You can use the syringe in the kit for IM inj or an insulin syringe for kits. Doing it IM is recommended. For kids, there's a chart somewhere but essentially it's 10 mcg (micrograms) per year of age. Without checking, I think it's 1 mg in the vial.

Keep it out and handy. Tell others how to use it. Throw the big sheet instructions away or remove them from the package as soon as you get a kit so others don't get confused and then scared to do it to you if you cannot. Leave the paper picture in the box lid seen in the pic below.

The doc scripts it by writing "Glucagon (rDNA) Rescue Kit 1mg for use as directed in case of SH."

It's shocking that some people never heard of it who should have it.

This is an important reminder. I think every diabetic using insulin must have a glucagon kit at home. Also glucose tabs in the right amount to cover at least two lows must always be in reach. For symlin I would recommend to only use glucose tabs for treating lows. Glucose tabs should be absorbed even with high amounts of symlin on board.

Good reminder. And Glucagon isn't just for severe hypos. If you take insulin, there's a good chance that, at some point, you'll either accidentally overdose yourself OR take insulin and realize you cannot eat (or throw up with active insulin in your system). I've used glucagon on myself before in both such circumstances. I never leave home without my kit.

I live alone and there isn't a lot of point to those of us who live alone having a glucagon kit. I've successfully treated lows down to 28. Not that I am cavalier enough to think I'm immune to a low I can't treat myself, but it wouldn't do me any good to have a glucagon kit sitting in a drawer when I'm unconscious. They are also expensive and they expire, which is a consideration for me as well. So what I do is work really hard at avoiding lows and test enough to catch one, as well as retest after I treat one even if it means staying up all night (which was the case when I got down to 28). So, no, I don't feel everyone should have one though I certainly think they are useful and good precaution for many.

I can see the circumstances which MBP is referring to, but I'm rarely sick or nauseous and can always take glucose tablets. Now those I wouldn't be without!

I recall being at an Advocacy Group meeting of about 200 people in prep of meeting with the FED. Polititians in 2007 , Ottawa , Canada and a call came out over the PA from a Doctor ..."is there anyone here , who has a glucagon kit" ...one of our beloved Advocates needed help big time ...a wife of a type 1 had a kit in her tiny purse, bless her ...this saved the chap's life at the time .From that critical moment I decided to carry , when I travel afar .

I haven’t had one for years. I don’t think there’s “a” number to use them at that much. The One Touch Ultra Smart I used to have would register crazy lows, like 7, 12, etc. I think the ones when you hit “check-out time” are when you drift that low with insulin on board, maybe the absence of food too. The more recent times I’ve zonked out I think mrs had it under control but the spectacle of spitting orange juice all over the place always prompts someone else to call 911.

I don't think I would use glucagon if I were conscious, having heard about the side effects, but we all make different choices.

There's also the chance of your liver kicking in which is what I assumed happened the time I was unconscious and doesn't sound uncommong.

Also, anybody taking Symlin best have this on hand since you cannot eat your way out of SH on Symlin until nearly 3 hours after the dose. It should be a mandatory second script for those of us using Symlin.

That's pretty scary. I don't take Symlin. I have never experiences SH after treating it with anything; chocolate, cookie, etc. My problem in the past has been the hypo making my too crazy to treat it.

I remember getting very low at a job interview, years ago; On my way home, I bought a candy bar, but started going crazy before I ate it. I completely blacked out, but somehow made it home. I wasn't able to unlock my door, and went into shock on my doorstep, with my shirt off for some reason? The candy bar had melted in my hand, unopened. Luckily, my sister was visiting. She pulled me inside and eventually revived me by pouring honey in my mouth. Wow. I hadn't thought about that event for a long time.

Symlin is synthetical amylin. In healthy people the beta cells will produce proinsulin. This proinsulin will dissolve into insulin and amylin. The amylin will slow the digestion down and this will help the insulin to unfold its activity before the carbs are entering the blood stream. Our faster digestion unhindered by amylin is one of the reasons why our blood glucose can spike badly after meals. Sadly the combined drug of insulin and amylin in a fixed ratio had negative side effects to my knowledge.