Monday, March 26, 2007

What did I think?

That’s what everyone wants to know. I wore the minimed sensor for 5 days. I knew that according to the nurse, I could wear it one more day, but the tape was getting itchy and I was just ‘done’ with wearing it.

I’ve uploaded my information from my meter and regular pump and done the comparisons against what the sensor logged. All in all, for me, it was accurate. I was impressed to see the day by day average and see what the sensor (in blue) had to say versus my meter readings (in black)

My husband and I looked at the graphs and charts and were amazed at what it told us about my general readings. It is truly amazing to see so much data about what your body is doing! It seems I need more insulin overnight. I am not totally convinced about that because I generally wake up lower than I happened to do for the time I was wearing the sensor. But that merits a basal check overnight just to be sure. Oh the joy! I knew that there was something going on in the afternoon (besides wishing I did something more fun than software QA every day) I’d guess my insulin to carb ratio needs tweaking. So, that was very useful information.

I did love being able to check at any time and see, what my blood sugar is and what direction am I going. I am confident that eventually, the pump (which ever company perfects it first) and the CGMS technology will be the standard in diabetes care.

Right now, my main focus is taking my overly prepared, over researched, type A personality, and life long type-1 diabetes, and getting this body that I generally love and appreciate, ready for a baby.

For me the crux of the question is
* Can I live with the 20% accepted difference in range? When my target blood sugar goals are tightened for pregnancy, being 70 versus 90 is a noted difference. On the other side of the spectrum, a reading of 250 could be 200 or 300 according to my meter. Will I be able to trust the sensor or will I be checking a million times a day anyway?
* Can I live with the monitor telling me I am low after I have had a snack to bring myself up. There is a 10 minute lag from what the sensor is and what your meter would give as a reading. Several times I would be feeling low when it said I was 85 (which is close to my target of 90). I’d check and be lower according to my meter, then eat, and feel better by the time that the sensor would alarm for a low blood sugar. When I was low and cranky, the last think I needed was another machine beeping at me.
* Do I want to wear another infusion site. The actual extra site bothered me more than I thought it would. Not the set itself - that I never felt - but the additional visual reminder that I was hooked up to a machine. Looking at myself in the mirror, the quick set site seemed ok, but the sensor just seemed like too much to me.
* I am an admitted wimp. Can I handle putting in this additional site once a week? I went off the pump the first time because the site was too hard/stressful to insert.
* Is the benefit worth the financial cost?

It’s funny, I selected the minimed pump a year ago because of the promise for this technology. My husband and I agreed, it was “a must’ for pregnancy- and then probably not really needed for general ‘life’. After wearing the sensor for a while, I am thinking just the opposite. When the tight control is so critical, I will happily poke my fingers every few hours. Once that little bundle of joy is here, and it’s ok to be 130ish, I can see this technology being pretty handy!

So the answer is that I still don’t know. I go to see my TV star of an endo this week (he was recently on D-Life). I’ll get his valued opinion, then will ask the endo at the pregnancy clinic when I start to see her in May and make a decision.

The bottom line is that it is fantastic technology. I honestly would dream about technology like this when I was a kid. I never asked for a cure, I only asked to be able to “just know” what my blood sugar was. I am truly grateful to the scientists and people who participated in trials that made this sensor what it is today. Are all of the kinks worked out? Not at all, but it’s progress in the right direction. And to an old school, stubborn type 1 who is very set in my ‘diabetes ways’ it’s a huge step in the right direction.

I’ll let you know what we decide to do!


Blogger Lyrehca said...

Pregnancy and tight control is definitely possible on a regular pump without a CGMS. My husband wants me to look into the CGMS, yet I want it to be covered by insurance before I do. With constant fingersticks, generous bolusing, and ongoing carb counting, tight A1cs can happen.

5:32 PM  
Blogger Kassie said...

Hey, one of our camp pals wore a cgms during her 3rd pregnancy - to help avoid really tough lows that she was having - email me at if you want me to hook up guys up.

I think the big difference during pg is that you really can't rely on the cgms for dosing/eating decisions. You'll still need to do finger sticks before you dose, etc. BUT I think it would be great to avoid long highs (ie, overnight) and unexpected/unnoticed lows (which sometimes happen as you tighten your ranges). I wish I'd had one during my second pregnancy - I know that I was sleeping through extended highs overnight (even with the occasional 2AM wakeup.)

6:49 PM  
Blogger Jonah said...

I think the pediatric version has a sort of snooze where it reminds you that you're low only after an hour if you still are, so that it doesn't keep beeping at you while you're on your way up.

8:37 AM  
Blogger Flmgodog said...

I am with Lyrecha. Tight control is VERY possible with pregnancy just on the pump and not with CGMS. I want to wait until insurance approval.
I was really worried that the lows would be a problem but for me the lows have been different pregnant than before pregnancy and I had A LOT of lows in the begininning.
just my 2 cents.

9:48 AM  
Blogger Jen said...

I just turned 30 last week, I've been type 1 for 19 years, I have a 2 1/2 year old healthy son, I just started the 522 paradigm pump 2 mos. ago, and I started the sensor 2 wks ago. My husband and I are doing pre-planning for a baby, and I already think the sensor is an amazing device! I look forward to your thoughts after using it for a few months??

1:20 PM  
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