Honeymoon is over, Was it hard for you to switch from Oral med's to insulin?

I was Dx’d with Type 1.5/LADA in 2004. My endo placed me on oral medication but he said eventually I would need to be put on insulin but he didn’t know when. My time came in Jan 2008.
I assumed it would be easy learning about and using insulin but I was WRONG!
Learning how to live like a Type 1 diabetic was a little overwhelming. I was use to just popping a few pills and bam, injections. I think the hardest part for me was dealing with the Dawn Phenonmeon, basal, bolous and insulin to carb ratio, etc.; I never experienced it before. I am blessed to have found TuDiabetes right before I started using the Omnipod system. I would have been SOL. I am still learning and I think it’s kinda cool having the chance to live as a Type 1 and Type 2. I wouldn’t change being Type 1.5/LADA for the world…lol I think that’s a little weird…lol

How did you handle the switch???

I felt so bad when I started insulin, it was a life saver IMO. I still don’t know for sure WHAT I am except diabetic that does not fit easily in a pigeon hole. When I was 14 I was told I would end up on shots… well I did not, well at least for 20 years! I did not want to hear anything about anything that had to do with needles (I was in a hospital at the time). Never knew all these peigeon holes even existed till last year. I got in the Navy, w/doctors letter), became a GOMER when I go sick and that was a Major reason I got out when my enlistment was up.

Must have been nice to have a doc that understood… I had a sore throat, was not feeling better, but even my (civilian after Navy days) doc refused to see me for follow-up when I complained. So a few weeks later I was hauled away in a meatwagon to ER after drinking just a few oz of coke.

Since I such a wierd diabetic, I read and learn fomr ALL types…

(&( GOMER (mil-speak for Get OUT!, My Exam Room)

I noticed you wrote about this long ago, however I may be just beginning the medication road. I have been watching my BG#s go up all year since having a baby and third time “gestational”. When did they put you on oral meds and when did they decide insluin?? What were the BG #s that made them change??

The answer is yes and no .At first I though there must be a mistake . Couldn’t be type 1 I’m too old … I thought I could beat it . I was starving myself ,exercising 6 and 8 hr. and working fultime. My BG still was too high.I was getting sicker. I lost 30lb in 2wks. I went from 145 lb to 115. People who new me thought I was dieing and I was… Only looking back can I see how sick I was…
Oral med only gave me the runs.Only when I started insulin did I start to feel better. I felt like I failed though ; If only I tried harder or only did something else ;I would’nt have to use insulin .

Now the turn around .I wish I started with insulin from day one . I feel great now. I’m my old self .No ,I’m better than I’m better than I’ve ever been before.Yes ,I still exercise but I’m not killing myself . I’m enjoying life again .


It was our dear friend Sandy who helped me accept the fact I needed to move on to the next stage and start on insulin .

I’m not a doctor so don’t take my advice. It’s just an opinion

I somewhat disagree with the notion that LADA and T1.5 are the same. I’m in Chicago and go to a very well know endo. I asked about 1.5 and he clearly stated:

LADA is 99% T1. T1 can arrive slowly or quickly. T1 has no clear path before someone loses all beta cell production. For adults is seems slower than children but that is even hard to prove. Personally, my T1 appeared in less than six months based on my regular physical in Januaryat 65 and my 450 mark on July 3rd . I went straight to insulin.

T1.5: Is in his words people that exhibit BOTH symptoms of poor insulin production and reception. These people can also switch primary issues and are very difficult to treat and typically have other factors.

Therefore: I’m not sure the definition of LADA = T1.5 Others please feel free to comment.

To respond to the question: More my opinion that might make me sound like a nut job : Some oral medications are hormones to increase sensitivity or too produce less glucose by the liver. There are also many other factors like cholesterol and liver functions to consider. BUT for me “personally” I went directly to Insulin 1) I don’t want to add any hormones into my body of any kind 2) The new pens are easy 3) I’m able to monitor well enough to avoid hypo events that are associated with incorrect dosages 4) with a solid diet and exercise routine I take very little insulin e.g. 1 shot a day of a long lasting insulin and nothing else. I find it very easy and for me as close to natural without a pump.

But everyone is different. Education and discussions gets you to your answer.

I was surprised to see how many other LADA folks there are out there… Kaiser first diagnosed me with Type 2. I did everything right - took 5 classes - ate very low carb (even lower than they suggested) - lost some weight (although I wasn’t even that pudgy to begin with!) And still the numbers did not come down. I had to beg, I mean beg Kaiser to let me see a specialist. I was denied for months even though I I insisted something was not right. Finally I saw an endocryologist who gave me the LADA diagnosis. I just began Lantus about 3 weeks ago. My numbers are all over the place…but then again they’ve been all over the place from day 1. Sometimes they are okay and sometimes they are still very high. I’m told some people are just like that. So I have this rare LADA thing and I have the bouncing kind of numbers. I think the expression is “OY”.
They want me to go on 4 injections a day - but it’s taken me a long time just to get to this place of doing twice a day injections plus hte oral meds… My fears are the crashes. I check my blood often but it’s the night time lows I am afraid of. Unfortunately “fear” is a big part of it for me. I keep soldiering through… Oh well. I guess I’m not alone.

INTERESTING; very interesting

“T1.5: Is in his words people that exhibit BOTH symptoms of poor insulin production and reception. These people can also switch primary issues and are very difficult to treat and typically have other factors.”

Never heard that before…BUT…there are times I am as insulin dependent as any full blow T1, yet also at time more like I just do not make enough. My insulin doses are more typical of a T1 and I am on a BASLA/BOLUS routine. I take 12u of Lantus twice a day adn Humalog on a carb ratio for meals and as a correction when needed.

When I was 14 I was threatened with shots, liek another kid I knew who was diabetic, but I got better. When I was in the Navy there was another scare in Jan 68 but told as long as I could pass a urine sugar test nothing to worry about and I would be allowed to return to duty. I went back to duty and forgot all about it, the scare befoe and never learned what diabetes actually was till I landed in the hospital for it.

GOMER (Diabetes, CKD stage-3 and probable MS).

Hi Charlene: You definitely are not alone. According to John Walsh, author of “Pumping Insulin”, rapid onset Type 1 is about 5-10% and adult onset Type 1 (LADA) is 10-15% of the total diabetic population. Irl Hirsch, M.D., one of the Expert Committee on the Diagnosis and Classification of Diabetes, says that LADA is about 10-20% of the diabetic population. A new book, “Type 1 Diabetes in Adults: Principles and Practice” (Informa Healthcare, 2008) says that adult-onset autoimmune diabetes is two to three times more common than classic childhood onset autoimmune diabetes (p. 27). So adult onset Type 1/LADA is WAY more common than childhood onset Type 1, and LADA just can’t be described as “rare.” But face it, we’re not as cute as some kid and we just don’t get the attention.

Have you considered an insulin pump? I have used a pump for 12 years now, and it basically eliminated nighttime lows for me. Of course everyone is different, just a thought. Best of luck to you, it really is such a shock at the beginning, but hang out here on TuDiabetes and you won’t feel alone.

I am still dealing with the switch. I’m on meds and injections. Now 2 lantus injections a day - very soon to be on just injjections… Numbers are constanting all over the place and I’m told it will be easier to balance once I’m on just injections.
I’m scared as hell! I’m scared of the potential crashes which I’ve already experienced… didn’t have to go to the hospital but it was touch and go.
I don’t know what the Dawn Phenonmeon, basal, bolous and insulin to carb ratio is. I think it’s figuring out how much fast acting insulin to take - but I’m not sure.
I hate this… but I’m determined to do the best I can. That’s amazing you wouldn’t change it. I’d change it in a second a go eat a pizza!

Hi Charlene: John Walsh is the author of various books on using insulin and using insulin pumps. His books would answer all your questions on basal, bolus, insulin to carb ratio, etc. Good luck!