Letters to the Editor

Mar 1, 1995

Gentle Reminders...

I received the second set of newspapers a few days back and instantly sat for almost three hours reading. I've been diabetic, with insulin, for more than half my life and it is easy to slip away from the initial teachings and instructions, as when I was first diagnosed.

Your paper "gently reminds" me and gives me good suggestions for things that others seem to be experiencing also. I learn about new technology and what science is doing towards a cure. We get new recipes and education on hypoglycemia and such topics as insulin pumps and production of different kinds of insulin.

I very much appreciate the quality of your paper. Please note that when I read this great information, I am compelled to keep on track (blood sugars, foot care, diet, etc.). When I read the exercise article, I even did seven miles on the bike and have continued my workouts every other day since. Keep up the good work!

Cathy Kownacki
West Des Moines, Iowa

Prefers Beef Ultralente...

Your newspaper is great! Do not listen to the cry-babies who complain about your publication. We are lucky to have such a newspaper.

Your editorial regarding beef U is most interesting to me. As a 47 year old with type I diabetes for 25 years, I am always looking for ways to improve my control. After reading your article, I also note a lack of sensitivity to hypoglycemic warnings. I just thought that this was a consequence of having had diabetes for so many years.

Now I wonder.

I had not heard of reports that people who had switched from animal to human insulin were noticing changes in their hypoglycemia warning signs. I seem to be battling the peaks of human insulin all day long. The thought of going to sleep with insulin on board is scary and so I allow a higher blood glucose reading in the morning to compensate for the fear while I sleep. I will discuss changing back to a "peakless action" beef U with my endocrinologist at next month's meeting. Thanks for bringing this issue to the public.

Bill Reinhard
Reno, Nev.

[Editor: Unfortunately, beef Ultralente is no longer available from any insulin manufacturer, so switching back is not an option. However, your endocrinologist can suggest an alternative treatment]

Reader Has Questions...

I just received two free issues of DIABETES HEALTH and have decided to subscribe. Your paper has shed much new hope for me, I have learned so much I did not know and was not aware of just out of these two issues. I would appreciate information on two different things if you have anything to offer.

No. 1: Where will this year's Diabetes Convention take place and what is the date?

No. 2: I am recently married, I am 28-years-old, and we would like to start a family in about six months. I am looking for any information on diabetes and pregnancy. Even if you can only suggest a book that is out, it would be appreciated greatly.

Evie Amelio
Des Plaines, Ill.

[Editor: This year's American Diabetes Association Convention will take place June 10-13 in Atlanta, and look deeper into this issue for a story dealing with diabetes and pregnancy.]

Monitoring Is Difficult

I have had type I, insulin-dependent diabetes, for 22 years and was featured on the cover of Diabetes Forecast in June, 1993 because I have well-controlled diabetes with no complications, and have lived abroad for seven years. I have also competed nationally and won in pysical competitions. I currently work two to five days per week as a dental hygenist and dance professionally at night.

I am writing to say that the results and discussion on "Intensive Insulin Therapy" may be very true, but attempts to follow my blood sugar after eating are virtually impossible to do because I hold down an 8 to 5 job. I personally feel that it is attempts to follow a suggested regimen like this that helped cause so much diabetes-related depression in me. This is why I strongly feel that people giving advice to diabetics should be diabetics. Anyone can follow and adhere to an intensive insulin therapy for a short amount of time. But you, Scott, and I (who have been taking at least four injections a day since 1982) know what it takes to do this for long periods of time, and most people just can't motivate themselves like that!

Thank you for letting me spout off a bit. I really enjoy your publication and the extra education it offers all of us who haven't been fortunate enough to be under the care of such people as Nancy Bohannon or Alan Marcus.

Cynthia R. Fena
Alameda, Calif.

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