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Re: [IP] Re: Fwd: six year old and the pump
- Subject: Re: [IP] Re: Fwd: six year old and the pump
- From: Ruth Elowitz <email @ redacted>
- Date: Wed, 28 Oct 1998 23:36:30 -0800
I appreciate your advocacy and the knee jerk reactions of many health
professionals are short sighted at best. However, I have to put in a few
thoughts to temper the argument. I lived with a pump from age 15 (17 years).
It was much much harder than the old insulin shot method b/c you had to pay
attention and b/c support was (and still is) often pretty minimal. Home support
depends on the many variables of family life that are so often not all there.
The first 5 years were pretty good. But at the 5 and 10 year points I went
through periods of finding it almost unbearable (except that I didn't have
access to medical supervision to give it up). It gets extremely tiring at 10
and 15 years down the road for a period of a week or two evey year or two and
for manybe 6 months every 10 years to be attached to that thing. I won't go on
and on but it's not all a piece of cake and when the novelty and the intensive
thoughtful support diminish it gets much harder. A 3 year old will be 13 in 10
years -- a hard time for most kids. It will be a hard time to be attached to
something for all the years you can remember. Is this a reason not to do it?
No, absolutely not. You just need to be aware that pumping continues to get
easier for the first 5-6 years and then after that it goes through waves. Your
body becomes less tolerant. Things fluctute. Old strategies stop working and
you need to start over again and again. Its much easier than MDI logistically
than MDI, its a thousand times more effective than the old 2 shots a day deal,
but it is not a piece of cake to live with as a pre- adolescent or as a
teenager. Those are all those kids who quit. By all means, do it. But when
you do be aware of this and provide ongoing, long term, thoughtful support.
Sorry for lecturing.
Beth Mullen wrote:
> I am so glad that someone else was as outraged as I was when I read the
> response to that question on the Children with Diabetes web site.
> I also sent a message to the doctors on the Children with Diabetes web site
> asking them to explain why they thought it would be easier to get a school
> or daycare to help with intensive treatment and multiple injections when
> their response indicated that they wouldn't expect a caregiver to assist
> with pushing a couple of buttons to give a bolus with the insulin pump.
> I've been kind of depressed about the information I have been receiving
> lately on this subject. I (foolishly, I guess) responded to a usenet
> message that someone had posted on misc.health.diabetes about their
> frustrations with their ped endo and pediatrician not being able to work
> together, and many other common problems parents of diabetic children often
> face. In my response, I mentioned that I was pursuing the insulin pump for
> Mark, my 3 year old. Well, someone responded and basically flamed me for
> saying that.
> Here's what Mr. Edward Reid said in response to my sentence about trying to
> get the pump for my 3 year old son:
> "This on the other hand is totally inappropriate. (Beth said her kid is
> three.) You may wish to look up the recent interchanges in Diabetes Forecast
> on pumps for children. The nearly universal feeling -- among professionals,
> parents, and children who have or have had pumps -- is that using a pump
> should be the child's own decision. It simply takes too much work which
> absolutely needs the actual user's attention and involvement and
> committment, to be a good choice for a child who is too young to
> participate." ( I have no idea who Edward Reid is or what his background
> and experience with this subject might be.)
> I don't understand why he is saying that my child has to be old enough to
> make this decision for himself. Being three years old, he certainly doesn't
> have any say in any of the other decisions about his diabetes management.
> He does get to choose which finger to poke, and after he is given an
> injection he gets to choose which sticker he wants. Other than that, ALL
> other decisions are (and MUST BE) left up to Mom, Dad and the doctor.
> Otherwise, he would never get a shot or have his blood sugar tested.
> I guess my son has already made the decision for himself, in a way. It
> seems like everyday he will look up at me and ask, "No more shots today,
> Mama?" And unfortunately, I have to say to him, "No, son, you'll get
> another shot tonight before you go to bed, and then you'll get shots
> tomorrow, too." Whenever he asks me those questions, it breaks my heart and
> makes me want to cry! I'll just look at my husband and say, "You know, of
> course, if he was on the pump we would only have to answer that question
> every couple of days."
> So, because my son is too young to make any decisions on his own, he has to
> be denied this incredible technology that could prevent complications, which
> may arise before he is even old enough to make the decision himself?
> I am determined to do what is best for my child and to let him enjoy as many
> of the benefits of living in this "technological" age as possible. I have
> been doing research and trying to contact as many parents of kids who
> started pumping when they were toddlers as I can find. And, I am very
> grateful for all of the support and encouragement that I have received,
> especially from the members of the Insulin Pumpers mailing list.
> Enough rambling and venting for me, now.
> Beth Mullen
> Mom to Mark, 3 years old, dx at 2 months
> He's not pumping yet, but I am still chugging and plugging for the pump,
Insulin-Pumpers website http://www.bizsystems.com/Diabetes/