Technology & Diabetes: Look How Far We’ve Come

I use an insulin pump to deliver my basal insulin & mealtime insulin boluses. My basal insulin covers just what my body needs without taking any carbohydrates into account. If I did not eat a single carb all day, the insulin would not make my blood glucose go low. This is just the right amount that my body needs to carry out it’s biological functions. My mealtime insulin dosage is dependent on how many carbs I am eating at that time. I only take my pump off to shower, otherwise it’s on my at all times. We’re pretty inseparable.

Medical technology has certainly come a long way when I consider where diabetes technology started. Here is a picture of the first insulin pump that was created in 1963 by Dr. Arnold Kadish:

The first insulin pump was designed by Dr. Arnold Kadish in 1963.  It was a very large device that was essentially worn as a backpack.  A more wearable version, dubbed the “big blue brick” was developed in the late 1970s.  A lack of accuracy of the device, however, made the device more of a hindrance than a help.

Here is a picture of a pump from 2015 that also integrates a device called a Continuous Glucose Monitor (CGM). The CGM helps a person know approximately what their current blood glucose is & whether it’s trending up,down or staying stable. Different trends are treated differently so it is extremely helpful information to have. For example, a reading of 80 & falling may become a low very fast but a reading of 80 & increases is fine. It increases the control over your blood glucose & decreases the roller coaster ups & downs. The CGM also alerts when a blood glucose is going too high or too low. This is especially helpful during the night when someone may not wake up while having a dangerously low blood glucose.

Animas Vibe (Animas + Dexcom)... I can't wait for Pen to get this.

Things are always changing & I’m thankful for that. Considering I’ll have to deal with Type 1 for the rest of my life, it’s nice to know there are devices to make it easier. Prior to using a pump I was dosing my insulin with syringes. For me, this was a hassle & I was taking way too many shots for my liking (without gaining the control I did after I started on a pump). Having an insulin pump has definitely been a blessing in my life. It’s ironic that having a device attached to me at all times has really allowed me so much freedom.

Love, health & happiness,

Jessica Lynn

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