[Previous Months][Date Index][Thread Index][Join - Register][Login]
[Message Prev][Message Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next]

[IP] All the WRONG Reasons for NOT PUMPING

    Warning:  Back up on my soap box (for a change!!! LOL)

           Fear not..I'm not about to "preach to the choir" here, since nearly
everyone I'm sending this to is already convinced of the many many benefits of
pump therapy. Yet, sadly, it seems as if we're all destined to constantly
"wage war" with physicians who are still opposed to prescribing this method to
younger patients. In this vein then, I wanted to relate a "true story" that
occurred recently.
    On Saturday, Melissa and a dozen other kids with diabetes participated in
a video to be used at a JDF function. As the kids were being interviewed on
camera , another mother introduced me to a woman who was having a very
difficult time with her 12 year old son. She explained that his A1Cs were in
the 11s and 12s  & that he was angry & frustrated by his disease. He resented
coming home from school with his teenaged sister & her friends and having to
stand by, while they "pigged out", because his blood sugar was too high. She
also related how he'd been high at lunch the previous week & had taken a
Humalog shot in front of the nurse.  Then at the end of the day, he felt high,
& he was; so he took a little more, so that he could start dropping before he
got home.  The nurse called his CDE at the Children's Hospital, who said he
shouldn't have done that because of the NPH from the morning, etc etc etc.
When I started explaining all about Melissa's pump & the freedom it afforded
her, the mom's eyes widened in amazement. Then, she added" but his doctor said
he can't consider the pump until he gets in better control".
Grrrrrrrrrr.....and pray tell, just how does this doctor think this
frustrated, hormonal ,pre-teen, growing boy IS going to get under better
control when, in his eyes, it's a case of "damned if I do, damned if I
don't"????? He can't eat when he IS hungry & then he has to eat when he ISN'T
hungry...and always at the same time, which impacts on his whole family's
   At that point, another mom of an 11 yr old pumper (girl) joined in the
conversation, as did the kids.  The more we "spoke Pump language" the more
excited both the boy & his mother became. He was truly incredulous when we
said he could sleep in on weekends, have snacks with his friends, skip meals,
etc...in short - all the things pumpers take for granted!!!!.....and all the
things non-diabetic KIDS TAKE FOR GRANTED!!!!!! Before we parted, we gave the
eager mom the phone # of an endo known for starting kids on pumps & the
websites for the 2 pump companies.
    Bottom line is this boy was already taking 4 shots/ day, checking his bgs
frequently & receiving NO POSITIVE REINFORCEMENT for all of his efforts. To
deny him access to a pump because he's "not in control" is tantamount to
punishing a student for repeatedly failing his math tests. I've likened using
the pump to having all the answers to the math homework in the back of the
book so that you get instant feedback ,as to whether or not you calculated
correctly. MDI, especially for a pre-teen, conversely, is like getting all the
problems wrong & having no concept of WHY???? 
   As a former teacher, I know how difficult it was for educators to evolve
from a teacher-run structure to one of "cooperative learning", where the
teacher's role is more that of a "facilitator" ,with the students functioning
in groups, to make better use of classroom instructional time. A comparable
evolution is now occuring I believe in the medical arena & doctors need to
acknowledge that there ARE families who have the "RIGHT STUFF" (hey it's
almost time for John Glenn!!!) to successfully "launch" and supervise a "pint-
sized" pumper. Given the Internet access to other families, to resources like
the IP group, to researchers world-wide, etc. and given the children's
familiarity with "gizmos", it is cruel & unusual punishment indeed for a
physician to dissuade a family from researching & pursuing a more reasonable,
"normalized" lifestyle for their child. Life is a series of trade-
offs......and if you were to ask my almost 16 yr old whether she prefers her
pump or MDI, she'd probably tell you she'd prefer NOT TO HAVE DIABETES!!!!!
But given that that's not an option, her life, day in & day out, is rendered
as normal as it can be, thanks to her insulin pump. Checking her bgs is merely
a corroboration of how accurately she calculated her carbs - rather than the
punitive, frustrating, perplexing exercise in futility that it is for the boy
we just met. 

Regards, Renee


Insulin-Pumpers website http://www.bizsystems.com/Diabetes/