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[IP] Pumping in Germany

Well, I had my inaugural visit to a German diabetes clinic today. I've
recently become officially resident in Germany, so I now get the full
coverage of the extravagant German healthcare system.

My previous large British clinic knew nothing of pumping, so my trips
there were basically cosy chat sessions in which I extolled the virtues
of this weird and new treatment method, to an amazed but slightly
skeptical audience. The information flow was one way. They have since
taken a detailed look at them, and the last thing I heard my endo was
perhaps starting some others on pumps... Surely this has nothing to do
with me?

Anyhow, this German clinic at Freiburg University has about 40 pumpers
on its list, so I had high hopes. I'm not sure what I was expecting, but
frankly the whole thing was a bit of a dissappointment. There ain't no
new answers out there. And a lot of ignorance. I've learnt all I know
from this list, and it looks like the experts out there don't know any
more. He only has 10 of the 40 on Humalog. OK. He has NEVER heard of
people mixing Velosulin or anything with Humalog: a 10 minute discussion
followed. If there is no risk involved, and if some find it brings
various benefits, then what can be lost by doing it? I won the argument,
and got my prescription. His patients cleanse the infusion site with
plain alcohol. Nothing else I asked? Alcohol in itself is not a thorough
disinfectant. You need chlorhexidine or something similar in it as well.
OK, he said, if that's what you want. He had never heard of SkinPrep. I
find it invaluable in preventing the tape coming off easily, and in
preventing skin allergy. More education...

It was so pathetic and sad to see the endo "ringing" high bgs and
shaking his head. Are they programmed to do that? Have they no
imagination? Can they not improvise when they see a guy come in who is
clearly in control of the situation? My Hba1c is normal, I have no bad
hypos, the bank of blood tests they ran all came out normal. If you want
to know the story behind every high bg, well, there are about 18
different variables: one is insulin, one is carbohydrate, and I'm still
working out what the other 16 are. Some shall never be known.

So I basically use clinic visits to monitor any complications, which I
clearly can't do myself. I've got my first ever 24-hour urine sample
this week, and a trip to the eye clinic next week. I am determined to
out the truth on whether there is or is not any impending retinopathy.

What I really wanted was a handful of prescriptions for free infusion
sets... and that I got! Now I can change sets every 3 days and to hell
with the cost! :)

(whose knowledge of German vocab in the healthcare field is rapidly
mailto:email @ redacted

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