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3rd annual diabetes blog week: may 17

For Thursday, the topic of the 3rd Annual Diabetes Blog Week is “Fantasy Diabetes Device.” What thing would I love to have, that would help me manage Madeline’s T1 better? What would she like to have?

Madeline’s fantasy diabetes device: “A thing that would make my pancreas work again. I would put it in my pancreas, and push a button, and it would tell my pancreas to make insulin again.” That certainly would be the ultimate device.

Me, I have a hard time imagining things like this. I don’t let myself fantasize about anything, really. I’m a pragmatist, to the bone. So, this topic is a challenge for me.

Here’s what I want: a device that truly integrates blood sugar monitoring with insulin delivery. I want ONE device, with ONE infusion site, that can both test blood glucose and deliver insulin. There’s some excellent technology out there integrating data from continuous glucose monitors (CGM) with insulin pumps, but none so far allows the glucose monitoring and insulin delivery to be accomplished through one infusion site. Even the artificial pancreas is not designed to work this way, which tells me that it is likely not possible.

Ok, so if I can’t have that… can I have a device that allows for accurate, real-time continuous glucose monitoring without additional monitoring via finger pricks? Because current CGM technology does not deliver truly accurate real-time information, and because its use requires the insertion of a second infusion site, we have not elected to use it. Why would we subject her to the pain of a second infusion site if we still have to shred her fingers and toes 8 times or more every day?

Honestly, the bottom line is that I want something that delivers treatment and allows Madeline to experience less pain every day. Most of the time, she handles it like a trooper. But there are days when her eyes well up with big tears when it’s time to test her BG, and she sometimes elects to not eat in order to avoid a finger prick. My 7-year-old daughter is already developing strategies for reducing the number of finger pricks she has to endure. That’s great that she’s problem-solving this dilemma, but people, it simply sucks.


About Heather Garcia Queen

I am… a mother of 3 spectacular children. A wife of an architect extraordinaire. An MSW. A psychologist in an elementary school. A (wishful) writer. A protector of family and spirit. A worshipper of the natural world. A seeker of knowledge. A lover of the arts. An introvert. A silver-lining kind of girl.


3 thoughts on “3rd annual diabetes blog week: may 17

  1. I’ve lived with diabetes for 33 years now, and I can’t imagine how hard it must be to see your child go through this day in and day out. I give my parents kudos for dealing with it back in the dark ages and I give parents today kudos for being so great with their kids and being strong for them. I love your idea of an all-in-one device. I think we all wish for something like that. I’d love to hear your daughter’s ideas for reducing finger sticks, how awesome of her!! Great post!

    Posted by tricia7473 | 05/17/2012, 12:30 am
  2. this makes me sad. i haven’t been thinking of finger pricks as painful, only as a hassle. you are right. we need to make things less painful, not just more convenient.

    but TOES! i have been wondering if we can use toes. i guess we can! seems good for someone sound asleep–easier to access–don’t need to unwrap them from a teddy bear.

    Posted by Katy | 05/17/2012, 7:05 am

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Creative Commons License
This work by Heather Garcia Queen is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

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