Insulin Pump Puts Teenager Back on Track

| Feb 1, 1999

My daughter, Savannah, was diagnosed with diabetes at 9 years of age. At that time, she was put on insulin injections. For at least the first three years, her HbA1cs were in the normal ranges, and we were able to control her diabetes. She started having problems, however, as soon as she got into her teenage years. Her HbA1cs rose to the 8% range, and no matter what we did, nothing helped.

Savannah is a very athletic and active girl. She has received Most Valuable Player designations for basketball and baseball, and she is loved by everyone that she knows. She is one of the most honest and sincere people I know. I started to notice that she was getting very depressed, and would never want to tell me what her blood sugar readings were anymore. It was as if she was ashamed to tell me or her father, and it got to the point where she would not go to her friend's house or go to school functions, malls or anything that would take her away from home. I think she was afraid to be that far away from us, or maybe she felt like it was just so much work.

We are a very close family, and when we saw all this happening, we felt so helpless. Then I read the issue of DIABETES HEALTH that covered children on the pump. This inspired me to get on the Web and read all of the testimonials from pump users. I shared this information with Savannah, and she was ready to start pumping that day.

Our endocrinologist had never prescribed a pump, and she had her doubts. I contacted our CDE and she guided me in the right direction. I found a doctor who had put only one other child on the pump before Savannah.

It has been almost five months since Savannah has been hooked up on the pump and, although I know it is not a cure, it is certainly the closest thing for our family.

Savannah is now injecting herself every two to three days, versus five or more times per day before the pump. Her blood sugar readings are almost always normal and she has started a trend in Washington state. She talks with other children at diabetes support groups, and now our doctor has nine other children who want to be pumped up. Our doctor has even been hooked up to a pump on a trial basis to learn more about how to operate them.

Savannah loves her pump and can now concentrate on being a teenager. I'm not saying that it doesn't take any work, but we are less anxious than before the pump.

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Categories: A1c Test, Blood Sugar, Diabetes, Inspiration, Insulin, Insulin Pumps, Motivation, Personal Stories

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