My first Borg implant
As you will know I am diabetic, but I am reasonably lucky at this point that whilst I don't make enough insulin, I only have to have one long term injection a day. This is, in some ways, a mixed blessing, but I would rather not have an injection with every meal.
When I have a good routine I don't have to check my glucose levels, but I am losing weight (lost 19kg so far) and this is causing a bit of fun and games. I have been lowering my carbohydrate intake and my insulin but I do need to keep things in balance. On top of all of that, exercising is helping and means I am lowering my insulin even more to avoid hypos (low blood sugar) all the time. I was managing to have high glucose and low glucose, both of which are a problem. I was getting fed up pricking my finger to be honest.
So I got a Freestyle Libre glucose monitor. It monitors interstitial glucose levels so apparently has a lag of 10-15 minutes compared to blood sugar glucose, but it is monitoring all the time, and allows me to see how my glucose levels change during the day. It is easy to just scan from my phone by holding it to my arm. It has a memory of 8 hours (I am surprised not longer) so you need to scan at most every 8 hours to not have a gap in the readings, but that is not really an issue.
I am not really the typical user for these. They are also not cheap (over £60 for a sensor that lasts 14 days). Normally these would be used by people that need insulin with every meal. In my case I am trying to make sure my insulin levels are right for a daily dose, but also trying to work out when, and how much, exercise works well to keep my glucose levels in check. Also working out if, and when, and how much Gliclazide I need to take. Having this near instant feedback from the sensor, and the graphs, is ideal. Hopefully I will not need to keep using them as I get in to a more sensible routine.
Basically, at this point, I need to go for a walk after each meal. Doing that, and taking a tablet with my main meal, should keep my glucose sensible all day. But it is a learning exercise for me, and I have only been using this for a few days. I managed to have a level of 12 mmol/l for 9 hours after having a pizza and not going for a walk, but at least I know without having to prick my finger.
I thought it would be uncomfortable to be honest, but not had any trouble sleeping on it. I did catch my arm on a door frame at one point, but otherwise it seems pretty easy to cope with. It is waterproof. I am not sure how easy it will be to get off at the end of the 14 days, I'll see.
Losing weight is good, but definitely causing changes, not just with diabetes. I have actually had to stop taking blood pressure tablets! You do have to be careful changing things like this (and I would suggest asking your doctor/nurse). I reduced dosage slowly and monitored blood pressure carefully - but basically I was getting dizzy when I stood up. Blood pressure of 100 over 60 is a tad low. I now have sensible blood pressure with no medication, which is a side effect I did not expect!
I also did not realise that there seems to be a big market for stickers people put on the sensor! Crazy.