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Re: [IPk] Pumping in Hospital

A few years ago I had my wisdom teeth out under
general and so I was in hospital for two nights. 
As I settled in the night before the op, I was told to
stop taking my insulin as I wouldn't be eating. After
I queried this, mentioning that perhaps I might need
an insulin drip (I had only been diagnosed IDDM about
six months beforehand) they had to go off and check
this with the diabetes unit!!

I was on MDI at the time so I had some long acting
insulin in me I suppose, but it certainly reinforces
the fact that the patient knows their diabetes better
than most medical staff. 

This is quite a tame example compared to the horror
stories mentioned by Susan and others, but it has
prepared me for any future hospital visits. 


--- Ingrid Morrow <email @ redacted> wrote:
> Hi Susan
> I am sorry for your truly awful experience in
> hospital. I have not been to 
> hospital since being diagnosed and I don't want to.
> I think your problem applies not just to dmers on
> pumps but to all dmers.  
> We need to have the full attention of a dm
> specialist while we are on 
> hospital as the nurses, as you say, have no idea.
> How we go about this with lack of NHS funding I
> don't know.
> I just hope that not too many of us have to go
> through what you went 
> through.
> Ingrid
> >From: "Susan Morrow" <email @ redacted>
> >Reply-To: email @ redacted
> >To: <email @ redacted>
> >Subject: [IPk] Pumping in Hospital
> >Date: Tue, 15 May 2001 08:41:42 -0700
> >
> >Hi
> >
> >I had the unfortunate experience of being admitted
> to hospital last week 2
> >weeks after giving birth due to a complcation
> arising after child birth. I 
> >had
> >to have a general anaesthetic so had to fast
> overnight. I was allowed to 
> >keep
> >using my pump until 7am on the day of the operation
> after which I was 
> >attached
> >to an insulin and dextrose drip using actrapid and
> a sliding scale.
> >Initially, I was quite happy with this as this is
> the standard protocol for
> >treating diabetics who require anaesthetics.
> However, I was not allowed 
> >back
> >on to my pump until the following morning in case I
> felt sick and couldn't
> >eat. At the time I agreed to this as I was in a lot
> of pain and was pretty
> >much out of it after the anaesthetic and morphine.
> However, I was shocked 
> >by
> >the lack of knowledge shown by the nursing and
> medical staff. The dextrose
> >drip only lasted for 4 hours and each time it ran
> out it took up to 45 mins
> >for someone to change the bag. During this time an
> alarm was sounding
> >continually and I was still receiving insulin.
> This, on top of hourly BM
> >tests, was bad enough during the day but when it
> occured during the night 
> >it
> >was awful. I tried to explain the consequences of
> just receiving insulin 
> >and
> >no dextrose to the nurses but they kept telling me
> not to get anxious! Of
> >course on each occassion I went hypo about 1-2
> hours later and they then 
> >had
> >to reduce the insulin dose and give me lucozade.
> Then 1-2 hours later guess
> >what, I would have a high BM so the insulin dose
> would be put up. I was
> >absolutely fed up with this and the hourly BM tests
> and by 3am I was ready 
> >to
> >burst with anger. Apart from the fact that I was
> getting no sleep, my baby 
> >was
> >being disturbed every hour and was extremely
> unsettled. As I was attached 
> >to
> >the drips I couldn't even manage to life her out of
> the cot so it was very
> >distressing.
> >Eventually, I lost my patience and went mad 
> insisting that they take the
> >drips down and let me put my pump back on but of
> course they wouldn't and I
> >had to put up with it until after breakfast.
> >What really annoys me is that during all of this no
> one really trusted my
> >judgement. I am sure that I have lots more
> knowledge of diabetes than most 
> >of
> >the staff in the hospital yet they insisted that
> they had to follow the
> >protocol
> >I am terrified in case I have to go into hospital
> again as I don't want to
> >have a repeat experience. Has any other pump user
> had an anesthetic and if 
> >so
> >how was your diabetes treated in hospital? I would
> really appreciate any
> >advice.
> >
> >Thanks
> >Susan
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