From Saint Louis, Missouri, USA:
I am a 14 year old female who has had Type 1 diabetes for a little over two years. I was thinking about going on an insulin pump because at my last doctor's visit my HbA1c was 10.5. I figure skate regularly and also do cheerleading. What do you think?
I think it is great that you are interested in possibly going on an insulin pump. You need to be motivated to improve your blood glucose and willing to work with your health care professional in assuming responsibility for day to day care. Pump therapy is for those who are willing to check and record their blood glucose levels 4 to 5 times a day. The advantages of insulin pump therapy are flexibility of lifestyle and tighter control of blood glucose levels used in accordance with your health care professional instruction. Remember, tighter control may help in preventing the complication associated with diabetes.
You also need to recognize that the pump is a mechanical device, that like all other mechanical devices may fail. It is up to you to closely monitor your blood glucose levels to ensure that you are receiving the appropriate amount of insulin.
The next step for you now is to talk to your health care professional about your interest in using the insulin pump. They should be as enthusiastic as you are. Make sure that your health care professional is informed and educated about the insulin pump. If they are not, they should be able to direct you to a health care professional who is certified in insulin pump therapy. Most important, be sure you are willng to take charge of your diabetes. Don't be fooled: the pump is work; however, it is worth it if you are responsible and want a little more flexibilty in your lifestyle.
Additional comments from Dr. Quick:The pump should not be a major problem for your plans for figure skating and cheerleading. As Miss America 1999 has discussed, you will have to be clever about how to use it correctly during these activities, and to accomplish what you want. Best wishes!
Original posting 28 Dec 1998
Posted to Insulin Pumps
Last Updated: Tuesday April 06, 2010 15:09:00
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