Three weeks out of every month, my diabetes is well controlled. But the fourth week, the one before my period, is a nightmare. My sugars are astronomically high--I can't even look at a carbohydrate without my sugar spiking. I'm exhausted and cranky, and I can't get comfortable.
Jeff and Natalie Kolok live in northwestern Vermont with their three children: Naomi, 16, and Johanna and Nicholas, each ten years old. Both Johanna and Nicholas have type 1 diabetes, Johanna since age four and Nick since age six.
Tony Flores is a 50-year-old native of El Salvador who works as a construction foreman. He was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes about 12 years ago, after an eye doctor told him it would be a good idea to get his blood sugar checked. He recalls, "I did the test, and they got all freaked out and told me, ‘Oh my god, your A1C is at 12%. You have diabetes type 2. You've got to cut the sugar, you've got to stop drinking orange juice and soda."
Ten years ago, an astute physician diagnosed me with Type 2 diabetes. I exhibited none of the classic symptoms of rapid weight loss, extreme thirst, and frequent urination. I attributed fatigue to my job. For about a year before diagnosis, I experienced what I thought were yeast infections and treated them with over-the-counter medications. I later learned that this condition is a symptom of diabetes. I am non-insulin dependent.
Since 1970, Joslin Diabetes Center has awarded a 50-year bronze medal and certificate to recognize the remarkable achievement of a successful life with insulin-dependent diabetes for half a century or more. To date there have been approximately 2,663 50-Year Medals awarded by Joslin Diabetes Center. Joslin Diabetes Center has awarded medals to recipients throughout the world, including individuals from Australia, Brazil, Canada, England, Hungary, Japan, Netherlands, Pakistan, Philippines, Russia, South America, Spain, Sweden, and Switzerland.
My diabetes and I have traveled a lot of miles together in nineteen years. Racing Ironman triathlons in Australia, Europe, the Carribean and all over North America, climbing and camping at the top of 14,000 foot Mt. Whitney, and of course dozens of family vacations and business trips. Packing equipment and supplies for an Ironman triathlon and 3 weeks in Australia requires a bit of planning and preparation, but when you have diabetes you feel like you do that for just a weekend out of town. Meters, strips, insulin, syringes, infusion sets, pump supplies, snacks . . . a simple weekend trip becomes a lunar expedition.
A Sacramento Superior Court judge has ruled that only school nurses can give insulin shots to children in public schools who have diabetes. The decision by Judge Lloyd Connelly overturned a 2007 California State Department of Education decision that allowed trained school staff, as well as nurses, to administer such injections.
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