Malcolm's a happy pumper - By Barbi Lazarow Barbi@Lazarow.net
Malcolm was diagnosed with diabetes when he was 2 1/2 yrs old on Dec 17, 1996...does anyone ever forget the date? We began his treatment on a traditional regimen of 2 shots a day, regular and NPH what we got was a real live nightmare. Malcolm had to be eating continually.....from breakfast to snack to lunch to snack to dinner to snack and who knew if he would crash or go sky high during the night? His bgs were all over the place....we carbo counted and we watched everything but no two days were the same; he would be 40 and 400 within a few hours...he would eat the same thing several days in a row and we still could not control his sugars AGHHHHH! So very frustrating...then we tried lispro...the new wonder insulin.
Malcolm was great about his shots. The combo of lispro and ultralente was really wonderful for his control. We still saw wild swings almost everyday but he did not have to eat all the time, he could eat what he wanted and when he wanted if he choose to have a shot. I learned that he was really using the 'poor man's insulin pump' with his 5 to 6 shots a day and his numerous bg tests.
After about one year I proposed the insulin pump to his health care team and they were willing to give it a try. It has been two months and it has been GREAT. We were all worried that Malcolm would try to pull out the infusion site but no way...he doesn't like me to take his pump away for one minute...Why? Because for the first time in a very long time he feels GOOD!!!!!! His bg swings are so much smaller...maybe between 75 and 275 on a bad day. Yes he still gets the occassional 300 but it is rare now....the transition was not easy; very intense. With such a young child (turned 4 two weeks before we began the pump) it is hard to know what they are feeling so constant testing (some days almost every hour) and watching is key until you get the basal (background) insulin set. Then, even if you have been carbo counting before, you have to set new carb per unit ratios because there is only one insulin on board....translate that into much better and more reliable control. In the end after the first month, the insulin pump is the greatest thing in the world. Better control means feeling good....flexibility on when he eats, what he eats ....He has become the little boy we lost on Dec 17, 1996...the happy and lively chap who has a real zest for being 4 years old. I can not end without thanking his great endo team who went beyond in order to give him the chance to try pumping...without their help we would still be swinging.......
Barbi Lazarow, Malcolm's Mom Barbi@Lazarow.net