May 28, 2008

Catching up with Technology

After being on my new Continuous Glucose Monitor for a bit now, I have to report that I've got some mixed feelings about it. Overall, I'm happy and it's oh so very cool to be able to look at a mini graph of my blood sugar whenever the heck I want to without having to bleed.

At the risk of sounding pessimistic, I'm going to go through the things that are frustrating me.

  • In all the pictures online, the transmitter looks very sleek, which it is! But you don't actually wear it that way. In order to protect it from getting caught on something and ripped off your skin, you have to put this silly sticker over the entire thing. The only way I can think of to describe this sticker is to say that you're essentially shrink-wrapping the transmitter and sensor to your skin. It's odd looking and you leave it on for the whole time that you're wearing it (days).
  • They say that the transmitter's results can vary up to 20% off of your actual blood sugar. This is because it's testing interstitial fluid instead of blood. For the most part, I've found it's pretty accurate, maybe 20 points higher or lower than my real blood sugar. But I've had instances where it says I'm 100, but I'm really 300, and just this morning it said I was 57 when I was really 190.
  • The woman who trained me on the transmitter had me set up a number of alarms so I would know when my blood sugar was high or low. But in the first 48 hours, the damn thing was just constantly going off, even when my sugar was great. So I turned them all off.
  • The act of checking your blood sugar is still absolutely necessary. You have to calibrate the thing at least twice a day, but sometimes the transmitter's readings are so far off that I'm testing like I used to - 8-10 times a day - and calibrating it more than twice. I'm hoping the transmitter will figure things out soon so I don't have to keep doing this.

The great thing is that it lies pretty flat under my clothes. It also doesn't leave much of a mark on my skin. And even though you're "not supposed to," I've been leaving it on for more than 3 days at a time.

I'm holding my horses until I've been on it for a month. Then I'm going to start downloading all my readings and look at them in graph format on my computer. I'm really hoping for some clues as to why my A1C is higher than I want it to be, and what I can do to fix it. We'll see!

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