Saturday, November 13, 2010

Diabetes has now Hit Home!! Praying for a Cure!!!

My focus in life has gotten a little tweaked the last couple of weeks. I will start at the beginning for the future’s sake:

Over the last month or so I had noticed Jack seeming more thirsty than normal. When your “sugar lovin’” 7 year old wants water instead of Gatorade you know something is wrong!! His thirst wasn’t excessive just different, but knowing all the true symptoms of diabetes and having it running through mine and Steve’s families I pay close attention. Well, I had been meaning to take him to my mom’s to check his blood sugar and just hadn’t done it, till Halloween. Not the best day to check a kids blood sugar, but if everything with him is normal his blood sugar should be normal. Well, we checked it and it was so high it didn’t register on the meter, it just read HI. Which means over 500mg? I didn’t think a whole lot about it sense he had lots of sweets that day. The next morning Steve took him to his parents and checked it again and it was 72mg, which is low, but the high scared me more. I thought all was fine. So my mom called that afternoon and had talked to her endocrinologist’s office and they thought that we needed to see our pediatrician. So I called them that afternoon and they had me checking his blood sugar the rest of that day. When I checked it after his “dinner” 8 pieces of bread with cinnamon butter, it was 473mg they doctor told us to go to the ER if it got that high again. So off Jack and I go to the Children’s Hospital Emergency Room. Steve and my Mom meet us there. They take us right back check his blood sugar and it was 179 (which was about 2 hours after he had eaten). They ran other test, not sure what, but long story short the doctor came in and said “Good News, everything looks fine! Get a fasting glucose done and follow up with the Endocrinology Clinic.” I had lots of questions, but didn’t feel like the doctor had time for any. We already had the fasting glucose scheduled for the next morning with the pediatrician so we went home (10:30 pm) and went to bed. The next day we went to the pediatrician’s office and did the blood sugar check it was 92mg. But Dr. Rash was really concerned about the high numbers and wanted him seen by the Pediatric Endocrinologist that day. Her office called they told them they were 4 months out on appointments!! What are you kidding me??? The doctor then looked at Jack’s numbers and had the pediatrician write orders for a Glucose tolerance test and anti-body blood tests. When I asked Dr. Rash her opinion of what is going on she said she felt like it was VERY EARLY STAGES OF DIABETES!

Type 1 Diabetes
•Frequent urination
•Unusual thirst
•Extreme hunger
•Unusual weight loss
•Extreme fatigue and Irritability

Type 2 Diabetes*
•Any of the type 1 symptoms
•Frequent infections
•Blurred vision
•Cuts/bruises that are slow to heal
•Tingling/numbness in the hands/feet
•Recurring skin, gum, or bladder infections

The next day we went to St. Mary’s (big mistake, they just don’t treat children) early to get the blood test run. When arriving they drew blood and we waited for his glucose level so he could drive the “cola.”

It took so long that he started to have a low blood sugar; lethargic, shakes, cold-sweats, nausea and vomiting. I checked his blood sugar and it was 62mg, very low. When we shared our concerns they thought he was sick and didn’t want to give him the drink. Long story short, they got a hold of Dr. Rash, I got to talk to her and told her he was having a low blood sugar and if he could drink the stuff he would feel better, so they FINALLY gave him the drink. He threw up a little but we didn’t think that would affect anything. Then about 40 minutes after drinking it he threw it all up, he continued to be lethargic, sleepy, nauseated. I then checked his blood sugar and it was 212mg. So we called Dr. Rash’s office and told them our concerns and she told us to take him over to the ER (Kosair) and they would call in Dr. Foster (Pediatric Endocrinologist) and he would be seen. DIDN’T HAPPEN!!!

We go to the ER and they checked his blood sugar once, I don’t remember what it was, I’m thinking it was 132mg. By the time we got to the ER hadn’t eaten in about 15 hours. When we asked if he could eat and I was told they would find out, well an hour later Steve finally asked and was told yes. He scarfed down a hamburger and fries (he doesn’t really even like fries). We really didn’t get any information the whole time we were there. We arrived around 11:45am and left around 4:15pm. They drew blood again, third time that day, for an A1C which measures your high blood sugars over a 30 to 60 day time frame. His was normal 5.4 and the ER doctor came in and said, “It isn’t diabetes, but follow up with the endocrinologist. REALLY!!!! So the next day I called the University Pediatric Endocrinologist of Louisville and spoke with their Nutritionist/ Diabetic Educator. We were to continue to check his blood sugars throughout the day, checking it twice, and cut out all the sugars and watch his diet. Well, we did that (Thursday- Monday). On Monday I called back to give her the numbers and see what we should do next. She said the levels looked great, the diet is working and she would show the doctor the levels and he or she would call me back if we needed to do anything else. Well they never called back, as far as I’m concerned the completely dropped the ball!!! He obviously wasn’t sick enough for them to see. I was still very concerned and call Dr. Rash to express my concern and she said let’s call the other Pediatric Endocrinologist, Dr. Raghavan (there are only two in the city) and see what she says. So the office called and faxed her all of Jack’s paperwork. They told me it would take two weeks once I got Jack’s forms in before they would see him. Just 15 minutes after they faxed his paperwork to them they called me back and wanted to see him right away.

So Thursday we went to see her and she was very concerned with his numbers and scheduled him for the Glucose tolerance test the next morning in her office. She is an awesome doctor who seems to be very pro-active!!!

We went in on Friday and they gave Jack an IV which he handled like a trooper, drew blood through the IV, gave him some medicine through the IV so he wouldn’t get sick again and then gave him the “cola” to drink. He only had to drink 45g instead of the 75g St. Mary’s had given him. Then they checked his blood (through the IV) just about every half hour. After about an hour, the whole test took three hours, she knew he was diabetic. His blood sugar went up to over 200mg and stayed there. Something no one else would or could diagnose in a reasonable amount of time she did in an hour.

I cannot even explain how relieved I was that someone would finally look and see what I was seeing. I truly believe that God’s plan was for us to see Dr. Raghavan. This is going to be a long relationship and she seems very interested in helping Jack overcome the cards he has been dealt.

Jack is handling things pretty good. He loves his sugar and it will take awhile for him to get use to eating better. He doesn’t mind getting his blood sugars checked, but he isn’t too sure about getting the shots. Hopefully we won’t have to start doing them for some time. We are in the “honeymoon” stage right now; this is when the pancreas is still producing the insulin he needs as long as he is eating right.

Please just continue to pray that we all learn to live with this life long disease and always try to make things easier for Jack and not harder. We also ask that you pray for a cure…they are closer now then they very have been.
American Diabetes Association logo


  1. It continues to be a learning thing for me as well.
    I will be keeping you, Jack & the doctors involved all in prayer.

  2. Praying for a cure, for Jack and all the other children plagued by this disease. He is fortunate to have such a concerned and persistent mom!!!

  3. I know it had to be so frustrating figuring out what's going on wiht your boy... & I know its not easy finding a diagnosis like that either... but at least now you know how to handle it.. & we'll just keep praying for that cure!!!! For Jack & for all the others who have to fight this!

  4. Hi Dana,

    I'm so sorry to hear about your son. It is a difficult thing to have to see your child go through. When I first found out Cassie had type 1 I was devastated and wished I could take it in her place. She's grown so much from this and has said many times that she feels she has diabetes because the Lord has a plan in mind for her. Whether it is helping others or just learning to deal with adversity in a positive way. She is such a strength to me and so many other people and I'm sure your son is to you as well.

    One other thing Cassie tries reminds herself of is that Heavenly Father would never give her something she couldn't handle. She knows that He prepares a way for us to get through difficult times in our lives. When it gets hard for her and she feels overwhelmed by her condition, she always tries to remember this.

    I pray there will be a cure for our kids in the near future. Good luck on your new journey and may God bless you and your family.