Katie uses an insulin pump and feels that it has make the management of her diabetes much easier. Katie has good control of her blood sugar levels and feels that hockey training has helped a lot in keeping things stable. Her HbA1c is within normal range although she finds it harder to keep her blood sugars well controlled at night. Roughly, she would test her blood sugars about five times a day and before going to bed. She does not mind doing the finger prick tests and repeating them if her reading are not good or, before doing sports. She would love to have a continuous glucose monitor, but as a student she cannot afford it and her hospital does not have the funding for it.
Katie was diagnosed when she was 14 and has recently transferred to the adult clinic. Her move from the children’s to the adult clinic in the same hospital was organised to overlap with her move to university. She feels that continuity of care is important and described her clinic transferred as pretty good’. Her first appointment in the adult clinic included her paediatric consultant and her new adult consultant who exchanged information about her treatment and how she was managing her diabetes. They talked with her about issues to do with diabetes control when at university such as sport activities, alcohol and diet. Katie says that they were also interested in finding out that she was ok in herself not just her condition. She left that consultation with the contact details of her consultant and nurses and with the information that her university had to offer her a fridge for her personal use to keep her insulin in. Since moving to university, she has kept her regular appointments with her care team at home and she hasn’t had any problems in finding slots that fit around her holidays and university breaks. She finds that organising appointment well in advance helps.
After diagnosis, she was on Novorapid and Lantus insulin injections. In under a year her hospital moved her on to an insulin pump because she was looking after her diabetes very well and also because she did lots of sports and was planning to go travelling. Mum or Dad attended the pump training course with her. She explains that in the course, everything was taught with a lot of detail such as how to set the pump up, how to set the basal rates, the ratio of carbs to the bolus, about temporary basal rates, correction dosage e. T. C. She went home with the same information in writing and with the contact details of pump specialist nurses in case she got stuck’. Katie found that being on an insulin pump make it really easy’ to control her diabetes. On summer holidays though, she prefers to reverse to using insulin pens and starts injecting a week before she goes away. This is a precaution in case of problems so she is able to contact her care team for advice before she travels. The change to pens is due to personal preference.
She is due to have her pump changed, but she doesn’t know which ones her hospital has to offer. Among the things that are important for her in an insulin pump are: easy to use, a good alarm system, plenty of warning about low insulin levels, good battery life and small in size.
In general, Katie has good control of her blood sugar levels and feels that hockey practice has helped a lot in keeping things stable. On average, her HbA1c is 6 although she finds it harder to keep her blood sugars tightly controlled at night. Roughly, she would test her blood sugars about five times a day and before going to bed. She does not mind doing the finger pricking and repeats it after thirty minutes if her reading is not good or, before doing sports. She would love to have a continuous glucose monitor, but as a student she cannot afford it and her hospital does not have the funding for it.
Katie’s diabetes control has remained stable despite having a busy schedule of studying, gym work and four sessions of hockey training per week. She cooks all her meals because it makes it easier to keep a close count of her carbs and food content. Katie has found that planning and cooking for the week makes it possible to maintain a healthy diet. She also likes going out with friends to eat. She drinks little alcohol out of personal choice and not because of diabetes. She usually doesn’t tell people she has diabetes, but her flatmates all know about it and one of them know how to treat hypos.
Soon after she got diagnosed, she joined a Facebook group of people with type 1diabetes, the Diabetes UK website and the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF). She became a JDRF ambassador to help raise awareness about type 1 diabetes. She says that her care team and social media have provided most of her information and knowledge about diabetes. She follows Diabetes UK on Instagram but she doesn’t have a Twitter account. She would find it interesting to meet new people with the experience of living with type 1 diabetes.