Diabetes..A Rant.

So anyone else got this disease?

OK, just to say to you all ~ I`ve had this disease now for 26 years, half my life, and I`m now really sick of it. Ok, so this is a rant, take it or leave it….

Nowadays, it seems to be alot easier to deal with and the treatments alot more reliable and effective.My insulin years ago was made from sheeps and pigs, nowadays its a human concoction,synthesised in the lab from human insulin and very effective. I remember some years back the worry that as the amount of Diabetics increased the amount being available from animals decreased and therefore if something did`nt get invented rather rapidly insulin was going to run out. Well we got lucky and we still prevail ~ not really sure about the lucky bit as the experts knew of the situation long ago and were, I suppose, working on its solution for quite a while.

Although the "human stuff" they give me now is very effective in its work, it can be a real drag as in my case, the signs and evidence of low blood sugar are frankly, missing most of the time! Sometimes I can feel it but alot of times I cannot and this is a nightmare. Low blood sugars cause "hypoglyceamia", or hypos as we like to call them. This leads to utter confusion in your thinking process`and eventual collapse into coma. And I`ve been thru` so many and seen the effects on my family, friends and workmates so many times its enough to send me into a coma thinking about it!

I remember years ago, in the 80`s, after being pressured to join the then entitled British Diabetic Association, that they would give me a medal if I got to 25 years with Diabetes!! I want it…I want it now!! Only joking, I remember it was almost fun thinking about it though…! I`ve seen a number of people with this condition lose their limbs and their lives from not controlling it well enough. I`ve been part of university experiments into why my control was so good for so long and I remember thinking, why don`t they just ask me? Cos the simple answer is that I overdose on insulin most of the time…what the doctors advise to take and what you actually take is very much up to you, you are the doctor in your case! This is what most people don`t seem to realise, you control it, not some bloke sitting in a surgery somewhere!

So anyway, now I`m really really sick of it all-the constant vigilance required is now too much. I believe I`m suffering to what is quietly known as "Diabetes Burn-out"…..

So anyone else have this lovely chronic condition? Fed up with it? Fed up with your treatment by a completely uncaring health-care system? Let me know~have a rant with me, I`ve been there, I know `em all!! Trust me!

  1. Jeanette
    October 25, 2006 at 3:33 pm

    Fascinating to hear from someone who has actually experience a hypo induced coma! I have been a type 1 diabetic since 18 and for over 24 years now and am getting nervous about my longevity. I have been on an insulin pump for nearly 3 years after having very brittle control after using an insulin pen for 15+ years. My hypo unawareness developed just prior to going onto the D-Tron plus insulin pump. Of late, my BG can drop as low as 2.1 mmol before I “think” I might be feeling a little nauseous and might be having a hypo so I amble off to test my blood.

    Q1: Have you come across any medical research that states what is the BG level at which the brain struggles to function properly and at which point I may just fall down without getting a chance to test my blood and eat some lollies?
    I live on my own and am scared that my brain is becoming conditioned to the occasional low BG reading and one day I will have another epileptic fit (due to severe hypoglycemia; I am not epileptic) and possibly fall into a coma.

    Perhaps I should focus on achieving BG readings between 10 – 15 mmol so my brain loses it’s conditioning of a low BG being normal so I lose my hypo unawareness!!

    Q2 Do you actually wake up from a coma by yourself or do you need medical assistance?

    Q3. I live in Melbourne, Victoria Australia. Have you heard of any upcoming medical invention where an internal BG monitor is inserted into the body that will set off an alarm if your BG is dangerously low?
    I feel this may be my only long term solution to having a “normal” life span. I have previously passed out from a severe hypo while driving my car in peak hour traffic, and woke up in the hospital emergency ward so my longevity concern is a reality, not paranoia.

    P.S. we get an award for 50 years as a diabetic in Oz so I am only half way!! Thanks for any tips you can give.

  2. October 26, 2006 at 2:10 am

    Hi Jeanette
    first of all let me say thank you for such an informative and interesting reply! It is so nice to hear from a fellow sufferer, albeit half-way around the globe!!! 🙂
    Although I have no knowledge of the various pump-systems I am indeed aware of them. Your troubles sound very similar to mine even with the different insulin regime I use (pen system). Do you per-chance use Humalog insulin in your pump?
    Your comment re. your BG being as low as 2.1 before you notice anything might be wrong is remarkably similar to mine! I have been as low as 0.9mml (..and I did`nt know my meter went that far down the scale!!!) before I realised what was happening – and the funny thing is that as soon as I realised how low I was , all the symptoms of a hypo became immediately apparent. This I thought very strange and I sometimes wonder what effect your brain is having on the state of your body…This lack of forewarning of low-blood sugar is a permanent feature of my diabetes now so I am testing my blood up to 8 times daily, sometimes more, sometimes less and always a drag!! I have tested my blood in the most ridiculous of places, from halfway up a mountainside to the inside of a salsa dance club while getting drunk!
    If I may try to give my own slant on your questions?

    Q1. I don`t believe there will ever be any kind of accurate BG level given by “officialdom” to satisfy what you describe and I must admit, I would tend to believe that too. After all, too much depends on us as individuals, what our life is like, diet, metabolism, and I think most importantly, where our heads are at in the event of low blood sugar.!
    As you, I live on my own and this tolerance of low blood sugars affects me radically….Doctors have offered no solution and I do believe that the insulins we use nowadays give us this tolerance themselves as I remember in the early days of “human insulin”, a health professional telling me this would happen. Since then though, they don`t, its made out to be somehow, “your problem”!! I believe that there are alot of these things that are kept quiet. Have you had your insulin regime changed at all? Was it your choice? No, its usually the health system you`re using, which has just got itself a better deal on your new insulin. You can, I believe, choose your own and if you shout loud enough, you may get it, but this does`nt happen often.
    I too have thought about raising and living with a higher bloodsugar than recommended and am currently trying to do so and have done for many months now….and yet according to my latest heamoglobin b1 test I have an average bloodsugar reading over the last 6 weeks of only 5.9mml….and this I know to be untrue.! Strange!!

    Q2. Yes, eventually, you will wake up from an insulin induced coma by yourself…I have done so many times, though trust me, its not something you want to experience too often!! I did find out why – evidently, your brain, knowing that things are getting really dangerous for its survival, tells your bodyfats to release some sugar, enough for the brain to survive. Evidently, your bodyfat has small amounts of sugar in it!! Never knew that…but am thankful nonetheless!!! It really is`nt easy though and the after-effects are becoming increasingly harder to deal with…massive and debilitating leg-cramps and a migraine style headache lasting up to a coupla days!! After coming round with your brain still in utter confusion, your survival instinct kicks in big-time, even though you cannot think straight and your body will not function properly at all. I have crawled thru from my bed to kitchen(even though I had sugar next to me by the bedside!), knocked over and broke my lifesaving Lucozade bottle(they were real glass back then!) and licked it off the floor along with the glass! Thats how bad it can get…….I smashed the kitchen to pieces trying to do this….and the thing that I find so strange is, where did the strength come from??? Its all in the brain but we don`t know the whys and wherefores at all…..

    Q3. I have not heard of an internal BG monitor that would do this I`m afraid and to be quite honest, am not “up” on the latest developments at all!
    I am sorry to hear of you passing out in your car!! I hope it ended up ok for you!?? Did you crash badly? Were any others hurt? That I could`nt live with and so made the painful choice to not drive as I had an eerily similar experience. I caught a taxi to go pick my children up and ended up in hospital instead after completely blanking out on the way! I remember thinking what would have happened had I been driving that car…..

    I hope I have been of some help, I hope you will find a way thru` your present problems. It does`nt get easier does it!?
    Please take care of yourself, stay in touch!

  3. February 3, 2007 at 12:03 am

    I read your story, which is so touching. My heart goes out to you. You have worded it so well, your pain and frustration just leaps out at me. I feel so helpless being only able to offer my prayers, which you have.
    I was just reading another blog on perspective which after reading yours, helps me see my own with a little more perspective. True I have a terminal heart condition but what I “endure” on a daily basis is nothing like you or so many others. I can’t help but feel humbled.
    Bill

  4. February 3, 2007 at 3:08 am

    Thank You So Much Bill for calling round and reading all of this!! 🙂
    Have sent you a mail so you can pick up on my idiocy first-hand so to speak!!! Hope you are feeling well at the mo,lots more reading to come from you yet I pray!!!
    Love to all!

  5. gesa emk
    June 1, 2008 at 12:36 am

    well im 15 years old and 2 weeks ago i learnt that i had diabetes but what you say about how your the doctor or im the doctor is kind of dumb because you could accidentally give yourself too much insulin and get a low and fall into a coma so yeah anyways ive had diabetes for 2 weeks and now i find its not even that bad like its a drag and all and i wish i didnt have it but when i was in the childrens hospital i realised how lucky i was to be in there for diabetes and not some other horrible condition like brain damage or somethin but yeah there were kids practically dying in the waitin room and there were 4 year olds in wheel chairs and 6 year olds with only one eye so just calm the fuck down its not all that bad giving yourself a needle 4 times a Day it only takes 2 mins each time thats 8 mins out of your day WOW BIG WHOOP so if you dont like it thats fine but you dont have to be a pussy and cry about it JUST DEAL WITH IT JESUS CHRIST so yeah thats my rant and ho the fuck did you like it

    er, sorry, but is there ANY intelligence in there?…. anywhere??

  6. gesa emk
    June 1, 2008 at 12:38 am

    and by the way i have type 1 diabetes and yall type 2 give us a bad name

    er, what? Do you know the difference?

  7. gesa emk
    June 12, 2008 at 4:58 pm

    yeah type 1 your born with and type 2 you get because your a fat ass and you had a bad diet so in a way type 2ers gave it to them selves and in a way you could say that they had it commin from not leading a healthy lifestyle and all but i was born with it so yotype 2ers can fuck off and yeah your so fukin dumb wouldnt you realize that if your a major fat ass you should try and get a better diet? so yeah now when retards who dont know the diff betweentype 1 and 2 seee me there gonna think i had it commin so yeah i know the fucking difference

    I left this comment up to show how diabetes can affect people, the above comment is rude, arrogant and frankly, disgraceful and displays such a lack of grammar that even for someone this young betrays belief….. It staggers me that he should seek out this blog and simply attack with such anger and vehemence with the only full-stop in sight anywhere being part of a question mark!!! Wow!! This is one angry young man … but I don`t know what/who he is angry at/with?? Me?? Why?? I actually don`t know!! What did I do to elicit this response from a young gun like this? Weird.
    I simply hope and pray that your understanding of this disease will increase because its about as way off the mark as you can get. Go read something! Maybe this will do for openers?
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diabetes
    I would love to be able to help out somehow but if you`re going to simply come along cursing and swearing with the most basic knowledge of the disease we both share, it will get you nowhere fast!
    Out of interest, I have type 1 diabetes and was not born with it as you suggest! All the type 2 sufferers are not all “your a fat ass and you had a bad diet” people either! The simple assumptions you make about people are incredible and deeply worrisome. I really really hope you will be alright and I wish you strength for your future. With strength try to pickup some compassion and understanding for your fellow man! Take care…..

  8. gesa emk
    June 15, 2008 at 12:27 am

    by the way you are born with type 1 diabetes but it doesnt start when your born. it takes a trigger to “activate” if you will ,the imune system to start attacking your beta cells and im not angry at you just the people who give us diabetics a bad name and yes am angry because this diabetes sis bull shit im a kid im supposed to live a care free life but now my future could be threatened by this crap if god exists hes an asshole with a very weird wY OF HELPING PEOPLE but i dont believe in god so im not angry with him 🙂 but yeah anyway diabetes = epic fail

  9. April 24, 2009 at 12:32 pm

    This is quite a up-to-date information. I’ll share it on Twitter.

  10. kevin
    January 30, 2010 at 12:51 am

    I am 27 and have had type 1 for nearly 20 years now. I can understand how angry you get when you are first diagnosed, why me? etc etc. It is a condition you have to live with and yes it does at times get you down which we will all eventually find out. Type 1 has not stopped me from doing much in life i work for myself as a plasterer but over the past year i too have started to lose my hypo awareness. I was told by my doctor its because of my insulin as i have been on it since first diagnosed (actrapid and insulatard).
    This did not really bother me until today i dont remember doing it but i screamed abuse at my 9 year old son and physically picked him up and removed him from the room. As you could imagine not good.
    The scary thing is that i have no memory of this and i was fully consciose at the time and it worrys me shitless if it happens again, stress you dont want as it could.
    I had my review last week and am still waiting for another appointment to review my insulin in the meantime iv been told to decrease my insulin to try and bring back my hypo awarness.
    I have only been unconciose once ,about 2 years ago and it wasnt pleasant, i shook like a kango for about 4 hours felt sick , had a banging headache, and had to keep going to the toilet to pee as my sugar levels were sky high due to the paramedics giving me glycogen then making me drink a litre of lucozade.
    I owe my life to my son that day as he called the ambulance and kept my wife and daughter calm.
    If i had the choice i would rather be in this state of a hypo as i can only harm myself but at present i dont have that choice and that is what scares me.People dont know if im hypo either when im conciouse and thats another worry.
    I am trying to research the affects that hypos have on the brain as i have noticed my attention span isnt great all the time and i suffer with cramps in my arms at nite with pins and needles.So if anyone has any info please share.

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  12. Mac
    May 23, 2013 at 4:12 am

    Well If there’s a metal I am first in line !! 49 years of this sorry ass disease !! Recently my kidneys gace out and my wife took off ! Great timeing !! As far as your sugar going low,, I have to differ with you !! At 40 pionts on my glucose meter,, I am out of my mind,, A few times I was revived by my wife with a glucose pen and my blood sugar count was like 29,, I know my grandmother passed away in her sleep many years ago,, and she too was dieabetic.
    I am growing tired of the fight and the $$ it takes to treat this !!

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