Thursday, September 22, 2011

Giving the finger to Diabetes

If you want to make my husband realllllllly grumpy, prick his finger 5 times.  

This was the case at yesterday's appointment at the Vanderbilt Diabetes Center.  It was our first meeting with an Endocrinologist to discuss Hubby's recent onset of Cystic Fibrosis-related Diabetes (aka CFRD).  After checking vitals, they performed an A1C test.  This test measures the average blood glucose control for the past 2 to 3 months.  It is a simple blood test but the nurse was off her A-game.  3 finger pricks later, she finally had enough blood to read the test.  After a short wait, we met with the Dr.  We felt very comfortable with her and she did a great job explaining this new diagnosis that was so foreign to the both of us.  The A1C test came in as 6.1 and she believes this indicates that we caught the Diabetes super early, which will make the treatment going forward manageable.  So, her game plan is to monitor his blood sugar for the next month, 4x per day, to determine the best insulin dosage.  He was instructed to stick to his normal diet for now and to keep a food journal.  At the end of the month, we'll head back to Vanderbilt for a follow-up to download the data from his glucose meter and figure out how to go forward.  

He stopped by the lab for another blood test, then we met with a nurse to give us a crash course...Diabetes 101.  She talked about carb counting, the sliding scale, insulin injections, and blood glucose monitoring.  Luckily, insulin comes as an injectible pen and works exactly like my Follistim shots from IVF.   So, those will be a breeze when he needs to have insulin.  She showed us how to use the OneTouch meter and do the finger pricks.  When she was just supposed to be demonstrating the lancet, she accidentally hit the release button and pricked Hubby's finger again.  She apologized 20 times and swore this had never happened to her.  Ok, fine -- we'll give you a pass for being clumsy.  But, then, she had Hubby do the monitoring from start to finish to show that he had been paying attention -- setting the time on the meter, inserting the lancet & test strip, then pricking his finger.  So, after a 1 hour appointment, he had 5 finger pricks and a blood test.  Ugh.  

Yes, it is very manageable.  Yes, many people have it.  But, that doesn't make it any less annoying.  

Hey, Diabetes, we're giving you the finger!  


  1. John hates to have his finger stuck. Not because it really "hurts" but it does get tender quick. He tested in his upper arm. There were a few approved test sites in our One Touch booklet too. Just a thought in case he gets tired of sticking his finger. Either way, be consistent. It varies depending the stick site. Good luck! John had to monitor his food for a month as well. His glucose tolerance test came back okay for now. He has high sugars sometimes, but not enough to use insulin for... yet.

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