Monday, September 28, 2015

Double Diabetes


There were no diabetes "types" when I was diagnosed in 1945. All
people diagnosed with diabetes were treated with insulin taken from
pigs and cows. That crude form of insulin gave me back my health. In
the years 1936-1939 it was discovered that there were two types of
diabetes, but it was not until 1959 that the labels Type 1 and Type 2
were attached. Oral drugs for Type 2 diabetics were introduced in the
years 1955-1956.

Now, in current times, we are seeing more and more people with
characteristics of both type 1 and type 2 diabetes. These individuals
have "double diabetes". This occurs when:

1. A person with type 1 diabetes becomes overweight and develops the
basic feature of type 2 diabetes – insulin resistance (IR). Typically,
the type 1 diabetic would then use a type 2 medication to help control
the IR. Insulin would still be necessary as well.

2. A person with type 2 diabetes has one of the key features of type 1
– the presence of antibodies in the blood against the insulin
producing beta cells of the pancreas causing a decrease in the body's
ability to produce insulin. The decreased insulin production can then
lead to the type 2 diabetic becoming insulin dependent. These
individuals still use their type 2 medication for their IR.

So double diabetics may have initially been either type 1, or type 2.
Once they have become double diabetics they have IR, they are using
insulin, and they are using a medicine (usually metformin) for their
IR. I have several type 1 friends, and type 2 friends, who are double
diabetics. Some of my type 2 friends are using a pump and a CGM.

In the 1990s I stopped using animal insulins, and began using
synthetic insulins. I began gaining weight, even though I was
following a much healthier diet, and eating fewer carbs. The only
thing that had changed was my insulin. I have read many reports that
say the synthetic insulins cause our cells to store fat. Maybe that
was the reason for my weight gain, but I did not know that information
until much later. I had never been more than five pounds above my
ideal weight (185) until the 1990s. By the year 1997 I weighed 242
pounds. That was a net gain of 57 pounds. A lower carb intake and
plenty of exercise did not seem to help at that time.

Finally, in 1998, I was diagnosed with insulin resistance. I had
several relatives with Type 2 diabetes, and it seems likely I was
predisposed to become type 2. The predisposition and the weight
gain are likely the explanationfor my insulin resistance. In the early
2000s I reduced my daily carb intake, increased my amount of
exercise, and lost 34 pounds. I initially used avandia for my IR, but
started using metformin in early 2011. Using metformin for one year
was very good for me. That medication has helped many diabetics
lose weight. I have lost an additional nineteen pounds, and am
presently only four pounds above myideal weight. Despite the
weight loss, I still have IR. Metformin,eating an average of 140-150
carbs per day, and getting lots of exercise has kept me in good
health. My A1c's are typically below 6.0, and except for some mild
nerve damage, I do not have any diabetes complications. Double
diabetes can be controlled, and my health is just as good now as it
was before I became a double diabetic.

Getting Diabetes Supplies

Great info for people with low incomes, or lacking insurance, who need help getting diabetes supplies.  Note: This article was initially presented by Christel Aprigliano, a wonderful diabetes advocate.

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Do You Keep Your Diabetes A Secret?

Do You Keep Your Diabetes A Secret?

A psychologist with diabetes discusses this in the article below. Starting in 1945 I did not tell anyone about my diabetes except my relatives, a few neighbors, and teachers in school. My mom did the telling, I kept quiet about it. People did not seem to know anything about diabetes wen I was young. My teachers had not heard of diabetes. I did not tell friends about it until college, but they did not understand it. I never really opened up about my diabetes until 2006, online, and in public. It was such a relief to come out of hiding and educate people about diabetes. I try to do that online, and in giving speeches to groups.

If you keep your diabetes a secret, what is your reason for doing that?

Monday, September 21, 2015

Medicare Coverage Of CGM's

I have been experiencing low blood sugar episodes and not always feeling them. Many older type 1 people have this problem. This would not be so much of a problem if Medicare would cover CGM's. I have not been able to use a CGM for three years. I had a 48 two nights ago, and did not feel it. A CGM would have helped so much. Many long term type 1 people have the same problem.
JDRF Advocacy is working hard to get Medicare coverage of CGMs. Please click on this link to send a prepopulated email to your Members of Congress asking them to co-sponsor this legislation!!! Click on "Take Action."

Longest Female Type 1 Survivor

This lady is said to be the longest female survivor of type 1 diabetes in the world. She is 86, and has been type 1 for 80 years.

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Dexcom & Tandem Integration Approved

The FDA has approved the integration of the Tandem t:slim insulin pump with the Dexcom G4 CGM.

Success With Bioengineered Pancreas

This is very exciting!! The first trial of a "... new implant site for a DRI BioHub, a bioengineered “mini-organ” that mimics the native pancreas to restore natural insulin production in people with type 1 diabetes." The trial was successful, and the patient no longer needs insulin.

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Joslin Medalist Study

Joslin Medalist Study
People with 50 or more years of type 1 are given medals by the Joslin Diabetes Center, in Boston. These people have to apply for the medal, and offer some proof of their being type 1 for that length of time. There is also a 75 year medal. I have the 50 year medal, and will be eligible for the 75 year medal in 2020.
In 2005 medalists were invited to participate in a study at the Joslin Center. I participated in 2009. Dr King, head of the study, stated that he hopes to find the factors that have enabled many long term type 1 people to live so long without any serious diabetes related complications. In 2008 the following article appeared in the Diabetes Forecast magazine. It mentions several discoveries that were made during the first three years of the study.
At the present time almost 1000 medalists have been examined. I will give more information about the study, beyond 2008, at a later date.

Explanation...My Absence

I have not been able to post blogs here for many months. I established a Google Domain for my blog, and there were some errors that I was not able to correct until today (Sept 19).
I have many blogs to present while catching up.