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Question:

From Wisconsin, USA:

My 8 year old niece, diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes 3 months ago, was giving herself an insulin shot at a restaurant dining table. The diners at the table next to ours made rude comments and gaped at us like we were child abusers. Is it not appropriate for a diabetic to administer the insulin shot at the table? Should they hide in the rest room, or could that also cause problems?

Answer:

It is my opinion that people with diabetes should care for their medical needs wherever and whenever they need. We don't ask people with asthma to run to a rest room to use an inhaler, nor do we ask patients with emphysema to check their oxygen bottles at the door of a restaurant. Rest rooms are generally filthy and are the last place anyone should go to test blood or inject insulin.

Your niece may wish to investigate insulin pens as an alternative injection device. Pens are small, easy to use, and more discrete than a syringe and insulin vial. Also, injecting through light layers of clean clothing has been shown (in adults) to be perfectly safe.

Rudeness and intolerance are signs of ignorance. It is only through education that we will rid our society of the belief that Type 1 diabetes is cured by insulin, and instill in others a sense of the invasiveness and rigor the disease demands of our children everyday of their lives.

JSH

Original posting 4 Sep 1998
Posted to Blood Tests and Insulin Injections

  
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Last Updated: Tuesday April 06, 2010 15:09:00
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