Friday, May 18, 2012

What They Should Know

What is one thing you would tell someone that doesn’t have diabetes about living with diabetes?”.  Let’s do a little advocating and post what we wish people knew about diabetes.  Have more than one thing you wish people knew?  Go ahead and tell us everything.

I think I want to limit my comments to medical professionals. I would like to tell them to accept that maybe not everything you learned in school is accurate. That making a standard question like "do you have any highs or lows" for people with diabetes is nonsensical.  That when a person with Type 1 who came in to the ER for fluids explains to you when you're taking history that their A1c is artificially low (although still in a good range) due to hemoglobin issues, the correct response isn't to run an A1c without telling them, then come back and inform them dramatically,"you're not diabetic!" That it's never appropriate to tell everyone with diabetes that they will eventually get retinopathy simply because they have diabetes.

I would also like medical professionals to understand that diabetes is not a scientific equation where you put in certain inputs and get certain outputs. That if after a single random glucose on a blood test you demand to know, "why was your blood sugar high?" it's totally appropriate to get the answer "because I have diabetes." That 105 mg/dl is not "high." That having to eat carbs before exercising when you don't make insulin is normal. That denying a long-acting insulin prescription for a Type 1 without, say, consulting another doctor for advice because "you already have insulin" should be malpractice. I would like to see a world where medical professionals are not some of the least informed people about how diabetes works.

Of course, I know they're not all bad. I have definitely found some that understand what we go through. This is about what I want people to know.


Jeff said...

Hi Lili,

I was wondering if you accepted any guest posting on your site. I couldn’t manage to find your email on the site. If you could get a hold of me at, I would greatly appreciate it!


Jenefer Maron said...
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