Me and Pharmacopia have never gotten along. I avoided doctors like the plague. It worked well for me because I was completely healthy until I was dx. Thankfully, D is the only thing wrong with me. If I had to be more reliant on the medical-insurance system than I already am I would scream.
I am studying Anthropology actually but I am thinking about getting my MSN. There are several graduate entry programs for non-nursing majors.
I am still searching for a doc! I recently moved to NYC and tried one doc and then was utterly disappointed which kind of threw me off doctors for a while. I know I need to keep looking I just get so disheartened. I’m glad you found one that will collaborate with you! That is exactly what I need.
I guess my cocky young self just wants to see the medical profession humbled a bit by asking why. I know it is never going to happen, and I should just let it go. I just cant believe these people who are so full of themselves!
Anyways, I second that living with it and doing the best we can is the only option for our life time. I’m just so new at this it is taking me a while to get there.
I understand not wanting to get in a flamewar. That is what happened to me (more or less) with my ex-medical team. I’m too feisty to back down and they were power tripping too much to back down either. I think it was kind of a draw this time. The way I see it is that your doctors work for you. They are tools in your arsenal against D that you can choose to use when you need them. They are not your only tools, but they are an option. Every doc I have been to doesn’t really share that sentiment.
A1cs mean far less than the docs or the ADA think. Different people glycate differently, and at the same A1c level, you can get wildly different average BGs. And that doesn’t even take into account standard deviation.
If you are having wild swings, I would recommend getting a do-it-yourself book: Pumping Insulin, by John Walsh is very good. He gives very detailed instructions on how to adjust basals, set your correction factor, and determine your carb:insulin ratios.
Then, I would give a serious thought to low-carbing – the book is Diabetes Solution by Dr. Richard K. Bernstein. Many people have found that low-carbing really reduces swings.
Basically, what I am saying is, for the intelligent, diabetes can be a DIY disease, with MUCH better results than what the docs can get you. Take a look at what the Type 1’s in the Flatliners Club are doing, and also check out the Bernstein group. These are people who are getting good control, and it’s NOT because their doctors said so.
Well, you can help control it but God knows, you are NOT in control of diabetes or anything else really that goes on with your body. Coming from a person who is in the throes of perimenopause at the age of 43. WTF…
While I can understand the frustration with the way you personally may have been treated, I think you have a basic misunderstanding of the underlying method by which you remain alive (the method scientific).
Science generally and medicine specifically never got anywhere by treating the individual as an individual. It is only by the broad similarities that these things develop. If it weren’t for the fact that we all pissed sugar at some point no one would have tried to cure our disease because they wouldn’t know it was a separate thing from general wasting away. The discovery that the pancreas was involved was a result of tests on healthy dogs who had their pancreas removed, not autoimmune disordered dogs, insulin therapy was the result of tons of scientists attempting to refine pancreatic matter until they borrowed the process from another part of chemistry. Recombinant DNA insulin was developed for you by scientists and doctors trying to avoid the complications that were developing with diabetics fifty years ago, many of whom didn’t share your exact problems. Doctors care about your HbA1c because it is consistently the best indicator of hyperglycemia, not because they hate you and think you are a robot. Working in generalities is what saved me from DKA in the hospital when I was quickly diagnosed and put on the standard protocol. Working in generalities is what separates physicians from witch-doctors, faith healers, and snake oil salesmen, and allows them to cure things and preserve people. If that mindset requires them to occasionally forget that we’re individuals, I’ll get used to the idea. I’ve certainly had to swallow a lot of new ones lately in order to stay alive. But just remember: if your diabetes was truly as unique as you seem to suggest, and doctors saw it that way, you would have to count yourself lucky that you were still able to ■■■■ sugar, or, you know, live.
Comparing insulin to acetaminophen and acetyl salicylic acid,
I suggest you be a little more humble about your traits, be they diabetic or intellectual. At least until you can extract usable insulin from a pig. Actually, the pregnant ones have the most. Look it up, it’s a fun process.
Well, if you have followed my postings you will realize that I have struggled with my doctors. And over time I have worked very hard to be knowledgable about diabetes. In the end, we “own” this condition. We will be responsible for all the day by day decisions that add up to how we treat our diabetes. We can get advice, but in the end that is what it is advice. But the system is not designed around patient led care, instead they are service focused and principally view the patient as a passive receiver of services, and how dare the patient speak.
But part of the problem is that with diabetes, we are dealing with a chronic condition that never goes away. Over time, a patient will “take over” things and a doctor should cede leadership as the head of the team. But my experience is that the don’t understand how to do that. And in many cases, it dissolves into a power trip. I don’t know how many times I’ve had doctors just “command” me to do things. Lose weight. Take this pill. They don’t listen, the consider my declining their advice as non-compliance (and just so everyone is clear, NO I WON’T TAKE A STATIN!).
It is hard, and in the end you should become an expert and you will have to assert your leadership. But the truth is, we don’t know everything. We need the expertise from the medical team. We also must depend on them as the gatekeeper, they give us access to insulin and drugs for treatment. They are the only ones that can approve treatments that will be granted insurance coverage. And in the end, we must try to be a bit open and humble. Even though they say stupid things sometimes, act like total sshles and display the social skills of wolverines, we need to them and we still might learn something.
(1) Doctors try to give you good advice (not necessarily the best advice they can, but advice that is consistent with the standard of care as they understand it). They don’t know you as well as you know yourself, but they probably know more about medicine than you do, and sometimes technical knowledge and self-knowledge provide different answers. When this happens, you ultimately make the decisions. You can always find a new doctor or ignore their advice (not saying it’s easy, but you can). (The “if you don’t listen to me, I’ll take away your license” is generally an empty threat, but if a doctor ever said that to me I would immediately discontinue our treating relationship and send a letter to his office to that effect.)
(2) My boss likes to talk about the difference between asking for permission and asking for forgiveness. You have to figure out which your doctor is more amenable to. “I tried taking this much insulin/eating this many carbs/doing X, and it wasn’t working, so I changed and got better results. Sorry I didn’t think to contact you.” is a good response if they give you crap the first time around (it’s even better if it’s backed up by data). Some will just tell you to keep doing what you’re doing, some will say “ask me next time,” and some will throw a fit. At that point you’ll have a better idea of whether you want to find a new doctor or take a new tack.
(3) As for nurses, just nod politely and if they insist on browbeating you, say “OK, I’ll make sure to ask the doctor about that when I see him.” Generally I find that this is a perfect example of when being firm but polite works wonders.
Hi Taylor. I too loved your post. The fact that you are seeking the “why” or “how” is such a good thing. A post which began as a rant about doctors and modern medicine became a plea for answers. I hope you continue to read, question the doctors, experiment and reflect. Never give up! Joanne
Have you considered that the anger you are feeling is not really with your doctor as much as it is with your situation itself? I remember being angry with my doctor just recently when they put me on Lantus and I kept getting high readings…however, once I got the practice under control, my sugars have been absolutely level. I’m not talking out my rear…I have been a diabetic since I was 12 years old, nearly 30 years. Having said that, sometimes the doctor you have is just not for you, and some are much better than others, so change it up if you’re not happy with your current provider. Good luck tou you my friend, and keep your chin up. Things do get better, and they will, but only if you take good care of yourself. Good luck,
I read your post, and I agree with much of what you say. I know a doctor who grew up with allergies. You remind me of him. He was so displeased with the system that he took it on by becoming an allergy doctor. He’s a good one, too!
Here is how the conspiracy theory works -
Doctors make tons of money off incurable diseases like diabetes - to a point.
The theory goes like this - milk your pocket book dry until age 65, then die early, die quickly.
This keep people off the social security and medicaid systems.
Most people in the medical field do not know everything about a particular disease. Remember, medicine is a practice, not an exact science.
Even nutritionists have it all screwed up. All in the healthcare system are like trained monkeys - they just repeat what they have been taught (no offense to anyone intended).
Rarely will you find a doctor or other that will go out on a limb to try something different.
The human body, most races anyway, were meant to eat a ‘paleo diet’, which is a hunter gatherer diet.
In ancient Mesopotamia agriculture was born. This comprised of growing crops and domesticating animals. This is referred to a ‘neo diet’. It is when the neo diet came into existence that the occurrence of diabetes began it’s increase.
While there is some evidence that 200,000 years ago, some races dabbled into agriculture. But most were hunter gatherers. They would hunt small game and gathered berries and such on the way. Some would even fish at low tide.
Within the last 50 years, the incidence of type 2 diabetes has skyrocketed. Type 1 is soon to follow. BTW, I read that homogenized milk may be linked to type 1 diabetes. Pasteurized milk is not.
As of January 2010, a link has been established between the consumption of high fructose corn syrup and the acquisition of type 2 diabetes and pancreatic cancer.
Did you know that approximately 28% of the world population is diabetic in one form or another?
And the highest incidence of diabetes is in the USA & Canada?
As other countries become more ‘Americanized’, their incidence of diabetes increases.
Type 1 diabetes is genetic in most cases.
Theory has it that 2 molecules are suspected of type 1 diabetes, and either 3 or 5 molecules are suspected of type 2 diabetes, depending on race.
Personally, I got my T2 diabetes from medications I took for headaches. I was one of the ‘rare’ ones that could get it, and did.
Drug and test strip companies do not want anyone to get well. They make trillions each year off the backs of those who suffer from diseases like diabetes. At $115.00 per 100 test strips (brand name ones), and if you tested like you are supposed to , not like they tell you to, that money adds up significantly. If you test the minimum of 7 times a day, it doesn’t take long to realize the amount you are spending yearly. And multiply that by 25,000,000 people in the USA alone. Metformin is fairly cheap, but the analog insulins are quite expensive.
You get one of those nice pens. Great. Convenient. Easy to use. BUT, if you accidentally leave it in the car, it’s ruined. However, you could just bring a syringe with your dose in it. If you ruin that, you aren’t out much. Pens cost between $55 and $75 each. A syringe with insulin is maybe $5.
The half life of insulin at 95F is about 4 hours. Then it slowly degrades over the next few days at that temperature. Ignore any claims made by the medical field or manufacturers. I know from experience. When I usually need 10 units, but take 30 units because I left it in the car one day, that tells you something.
The world is extremely overpopulated right now. What easier politically correct way to control the population is to hide cures for diseases and blame early deaths on incurable diseases.
Plus grant and research money dries up if a cure is found.
It’s all about money - you have it they take it.
Note: MODY is a peculiar form of diabetes. Not much is actually known about it other than there are a kazillion forms of MODY.
Oh, and for the record - fat does not make you fat. Excess carbohydrates WITH fat make you fat. Insulin is very very efficient at converting blood sugars into fat - adipose fat.
Insulin is a two edged sword. You need it to survive, but the more of it you have the shorter your lifespan.
Blood sugars raise cholesterol, not eating saturated animal fat. Your liver dumps cholesterol into your blood stream to protect your arteries from the detrimental effects of blood sugar. Result - high cholesterol and high blood pressure.
Many will try to debate my post. Especially vegetarians and nutritionists. Again, they are the blind following the blind.
Vegetarians struggle with protein shortages. Nutritionists want you to eat too many carbs per meal, per day.
Red meat with low or no carbs will yield the best results. But no matter what, you must exercise (the hunter part, remember?)
Check out Dr Bernstein. He has more knowledge than I do. Ellis Troussier (spelling?) is another one.
Good or bad health is generally determined by the rate in which you bend your elbow. The more you bend it the unhealthier you usually get.
I could only wish to put IT into words.
You've been dealing with D for how long ....3years ??
You have put what most of us have felt for 20 plus years down in print and very well stated.
I too, have NOT had issues disclosed to me when steps were taken or Not taken when my direct health issues were in question.
My latest diagnosis at age 41 states - 3.3 (as an average) of osteoporosis (this is comparing my skeleton to that of an 80 year old with bone loss) .The reason I mention this here ??
This complication was never mentioned in any way. The steps to prevent complications are ALL I have EVER asked for from my team of Dr.s, I have working for me !!! Talk about a let down.
I have just found out about Diabetes and Osteoporosis link from American Diabetes Association
stated in part;
For patients with type 1 diabetes, the initial onset of the disease often occurs at a young age, when bone mass is still being accrued. Thus, low bone mass is not a surprising complication of type 1 diabetes.
I hope everyone reads your post, to learn on their own so they too can ask the right questions.
Yes, it makes one wonder, do they really want to find a cure?
To your comment, "Within the last 50 years, the incidence of type 2 diabetes has skyrocketed." Could this be due in large part to better diagnosis as opposed to an actual increase in diabetes? In the 19th century many diabetics were thought to be alcoholics, since the symptoms are sometimes the same to an observer.