8 year old David loves his pump

by David's mom, Kathryn Uhlman

David was diagnosed with IDDM at the age of 7. He had been having episodes of bedwetting and emergency trips to the bathroom. I thought it was a urinary tract infection and some antibiotics would take care of it. Well, not exactly! He was admitted to the hospital and we started our training. Funny thing was that everyone told us diabetes management would be easy, "If you do A, then B will happen", so I would do A, and B would not happen. I tried and tried and tried and still could not get the results I wanted - good blood glucose control. We had tried NPH, Ultralente, and pork NPH. Nothing could get us the control we were after. There were many, many highs and some very scary lows, one of which resulted in a seizure.

I had read about pumping but everything I had seen said it was not an option until the teen years. I took that advice at face value until I stumbled upon the Kids R Pumping web site and the Insulin-Pumpers web site. They changed our lives. Now I had a choice, a way to be proactive with David's care. I got as much information as I could and, armed with this, approached our CDE and our endocrinologist. I have been blessed by these people in our lives because both are type 1 Diabetics who wear pumps and were very supportive of my request for a pump. We left the office with a prescription for a pump and a fighting attitude to take to the insurance company. Luckily, it was not needed, and the pump was approved in less than a week.

We had an added element of concern about the pump which was that we knew we were going to be moving from North Carolina to Mexico a few months later. Could we get the pump training done, get the routine figured out before we moved? Everyone was fabulous in getting it done as fast as possible.

The first few days on the pump were like a miracle. David's numbers stayed in the low 100s the whole time. Eureka! Wish I could say it has stayed that way, but this is real life afterall. However, when his numbers are "out of whack" they can usually be explained. On injections, I never knew what would cause a high or low. Also, when David would have a high while on injections, I just had to wait to see if the long acting insulin would finally bring him down. The whole time knowing that those high numbers were harzardous to his health.

By far the best thing about the pump has been the ability for David to now eat whatever, whenever he wants. On injections he was constantly hungry, constantly telling me he wanted to eat and I would have to tell him to have some cheese or some sugar free jello till his numbers came down. I truly believe he had the beginnings of an eating disorder. Now, with the pump, he's hungry, he eats. And there is no "You've already had all the carbs you're allowed, so have something else"! I can't say enough wonderful things about the pump. David loves it too - he can eat what he wants, and no more painful injections.

We have had very few problems with the pump. There has NEVER been one instance since being on the pump for 6 months, where either David or I have thought pumping was a mistake.

And the pump had made our move to Mexico that much easier - when we were sitting down to dinner at 9:30 pm at some resturant ordering who knows what, I didn't have to worry that dinner was supposed to be 3 hours ago and he was going to crash.

As much as I love the pump, David loves it more. It's the only way to go.

Kathryn Uhlman

If you have a child with diabetes and would like to talk to other parents about the Insulin Pump, please contact or visit the Insulin-Pumpers website.