Friday, January 25, 2008

The Appointment.

To set the scene for you, here is a list of objects scattered around Gary's office (fairly organized, of course, they're not just thrown about):

1. Bookshelves with diabetes-related books and other items available for sale, like glucose tabs and boxes of IV Preps.
2. A table covered with various types of glucose meters, insulin pens and insulin pumps to look at and compare firsthand. This was really awesome, as I was able to actually pick up an Omnipod, a Cozmo, an Animas, a Dexcom...all the technology I read about that you usually don't get to see unless it shows up in a box on your doorstep.
3. Pamphlets to take, magazines to read and take, and news clippings on the walls about their patients.

It just seemed like a friendly, inviting kind of office, with pictures everywhere. Gary was the only one in the office today, and I think I was probably the only appointment of the afternoon, so I think I spent something like 2 hours there. We talked about my weight loss goals, my depression, my knowledge of diabetes in general, what kinds of plans I have in place already (not a lot, heh), even a little bit about my carb counting knowledge.

We called Medtronic to find out when my pump warranty expires. Turns out it was last week. Oops, way to drop the ball and not send me a letter, MiniMed. Gary mentioned that I might not be on the best pump for my insulin needs, so we compared stats on insulin pumps. I may get something other than a MiniMed next pump around. I'll keep you posted. He suggested a mail-order pharmacy that specializes in diabetes supplies that might work with my insurance, instead of having to beg my own insurance for prescriptions in the correct amounts.

We just generally worked on what my goals are and what I've done in the past. We're going to test my basals and try to get them straightened out. Then we'll work with the boluses and try to get them straightened out. Then he's going to teach me more about all the specialized stuff--temp basals, dual-wave boluses, etc.--that I'm not all that familiar with. On my next visit to the office, I meet with the nutritionist who specializes in weight management.

I'm so happy. I feel such a relief to know that I finally have a medical team who is 100% on my side and seems 100% supportive. Having someone who knows what you're going through makes all the difference in the world. Gary wears a Deltec Cozmo pump and had a DexCom on today, so we were checking out his DexCom profile.

When mentioning my GP's reaction to my A1C of 8.5, he made a comment like so many of us on the OC already did: if you don't have diabetes, it's easy to come down hard on someone for their numbers, maybe even harder than is necessary. We also discussed how we only change lancets about once a month. Once, he asked a patient who'd had diabetes for 5 years how often he changed his lancet, and the patient answered, "You can change them?"

It was a great visit, and I'm actually looking forward to looking at all of my numbers.

I also scored some diabetes swag...some QuickSets to experiment with, since I've been using SofSets and I think I'd prefer the others, a One Touch Ultra 2 so I can upload my numbers onto their office computer (I've been using an UltraMini without a data port, and he said I might prefer the design of this one to the UltraSmart I have), and some books on carb counting, which I had to buy, but are totally worth it.

All in all, it was a great visit, and a good day. Tonight I'm off to a poetry slam, but I'm not sure if I'm going to compete or not. Sometimes I get tired of doing all the old poems, and I haven't memorized any of the new ones. Either way, I'll get to see some friends and some new faces. What a great way to kick off the weekend! I hope your weekend is a good one, blog-reading friends. Happy Friday!


  1. Hannah that all sounds so positive. I'm so happy for you! I wish I actually cared enough to find something like it around here, but I feel like I'm fine with how things are and I'm extremely stubborn.

    Happy Weekend!

  2. Hannah - sounds like just the person you need on your team. Rah rah Gary!
    I'm pleased for you and look forward to following you on your new adventure.

  3. Mine expires on the 30th - the only reason I know that is because I called to figure out if it would be better to do the paradigm pathway or wait for a new pump.

    Sounds like a good appointment!


    I am glad you had such a positive appointment. What a difference it can make. I'm so glad!

    What is the mail order pharmacy that specializes in diabetes, by the way?

  5. Hannah,
    What a great visit! Isn't it nice to have such a nice person helping you with your diabetes? I'm glad it went well. :)

  6. Sounds like a fantastic visit Hannah! Doesn't that make such a big difference?

    You go Hannah!

  7. Hannah

    I'm glad you got to spend time with Gary in person. I've worked with him for over six months and he's helpful and informative. But we work together by phone.

    I hope the changes he's suggesting work as well for you as the ones he made did for me.


Remember to use your commenting powers for good, not evil. Excelsior!