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Chemist tested me for diabetes - sent me to the Dr TODAY urgently...please come and talk to me...

(723 Posts)
MyHeadWasInTheSandNowNot Tue 22-Jan-13 15:28:34

<Sorry, just got to the end and realised how long this is!!>

These are my questions

1: The reading the chemist got was 20 - can anyone tell me what this means (ie how 'serious' it is) and if they think it could be controlled and/or preferably gotten rid of through diet and exercise.

2: What will the Dr do today.

The rest is whittering background.

Also, I just wanted to say that I'll have to go in about an hour and wont be able to get back on line until tomorrow afternoon, but I haven't done a runner and will be grateful for any help/advice.

[I'm a regular - I've namechanged because I'm not sure yet if I want to tell anyone or not and I have a few RL friends on MN. It's not that I mind people knowing as such it's just that I don't want it to turn into A Big Deal]

I have been wondering for quite some time if I might have diabetes. A few things have made me wonder about it such as

- Excessive thirst (always having to have a bottle of water on me)

- Eyes a bit blurry at night (been blaming the overhead light and the small tv screen with tivo bright red background and only a problem at night and spending too much time looking at screens)

- Occasional 'shakes'

- I am overweight and struggle with feeling like my 'blood sugars' aren't right

...but what made me 'man up' to getting tested was that last week & yesterday I had a couple of episodes of light headedness/feeling faint when doing things such as changing a lightbulb, I had also been having them in the shower, but put that down to it being hot/steamy etc

I called the chemist about a year ago blush to see if they did the tests, but ended up not going <hence my name for this thread>

I also went to my Dr about 3-4 years ago with constant tiredness and no real reason for it.... he put it down to my weight (which although I'm overweight was not stopping me doing anything, being reasonably fit etc), he really wasn't interested in looking further. I haven't been back, but am and have been pretty much constantly tired since before then. I know I should have seen another Dr but it's hard when you are overweight and they don't seem interested in seeing past that and accept their might be something other excess weight causing the problem.

I wonder now how long I might have had it for and thus how much damage I might have done already to my body, especially my eyes, that's pretty scary.

I was already overweight, but I was pretty fit - then something quite lifechanging happened and I've put on more weight, stopped exercising and I am not unfit. I'm certainly not can't move off the couch unfit - I could still easily walk 4 miles, run for the bus (i'd be panting but I could do it and would recover pretty quickly) - but something else I've noticed (just yesterday I really 'thought' about it) is that I have been putting off doing stuff like walking places (now I take the car), running up the stairs (now only ever walk), kicking the ball about with the kids etc and I realised yesterday it's because when I do I feel awful - not just tired/worn out but light headed and a bit pukey - it's been a gradual thing.

I am totally committed to exercising - a minimum of 30 minutes every day without fail (have just been for an hours walk - about 3 miles) and to improving my diet (which I fully accept hasn't been great for a while, since this 'thing' happened and for a wee bit before then).

I'm not looking for any magic cure - I just want to know if I can get rid of the diabetes through diet and exercise.

Thank you if you made it this far - or even if you didn't wade through it all but can help.

Harrybaws Wed 06-Nov-13 09:45:49

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Matildathecat Mon 05-Aug-13 18:02:30


ChippingInHopHopHop Fri 02-Aug-13 18:23:25

At 3 hrs it was down to 5.9, so seems OK as a treat once in a while. Though very bad for low carbing weight loss. Ah well. You can't have everything!

ChippingInHopHopHop Fri 02-Aug-13 15:20:44

UPDATE (OP here!!)

Hi all smile

Just thought I'd let you all know that I have had my 6 month HbA1c results back and it was 5.3 (34) grin

I was actually a little concerned it would be a bit higher than last time (5.8) as I haven't seen many 4's in this past 3 months, but then I have hardly been testing really. I mostly get the 4's late afternoon.

I now test every morning (though I'm thinking about stopping that too) and occasionally if I think 'hmm wonder what it is?' and thoroughly if I try something 'new'. For example I was in Wales earlier in the month and had a baby sized ice-cream (last time I went to Wales everyone said I had to try the ice-cream but I didn't as I was trying to get this under control and I was due my previous HbA1c - so this time I thought I'd try it). It was in a plain cone, which I gave to the seagulls and it was a baby scoop. My levels only changed by the same amount as they would if I ate veg or almonds or whatever. I tested 1hr, 2hrs, 3 hrs, midnight (as I was still up) and 5am - all normal. So it looks like a small ice-cream is probably going to be OK for an occasional treat.

At lunchtime I went out with a friend. I really fancied a scone and a latte - so decided to 'take the risk'. I didn't have my results then & decided either way, today was the day for 'risk taking'! After all, I have been incredibly (low carbing) 'good' for over 6 months and I have lost 40lbs, almost 3 stone grin

2hrs in my reading is 7.9 - which I think is OK?? (I didn't test at 1 hr as I was still out and didn't take my 'kit' - but 2 hrs has pretty much always been my 'high point'.

I'll test again in an hour and see if it has started to come down at all.

I just want to thank you all again, as I would have been really, really lost without you all in the early months!! Thanks thanks x

ChippingInWiredOnCoffee Sun 16-Jun-13 09:49:58

Ilove - sorry, this keeps 'falling off of' my 'Threads I'm on'.

It isn't 'that high' smile All I was saying is that it's 'high enough' that I would be keeping an eye on it, getting my weight down and watching the carbs - to ensure it stays there.

How have you been feeling this week?

Ilovesunflowers Fri 07-Jun-13 15:43:08

Thank you. That is reassuring Monty. Much appreciated.

Montybojangles Fri 07-Jun-13 09:32:54

ILove the diagnostic criteria for diabetes with regard your HbA1c is 48, so you are nicely below that (it is still possible to be diagnosed below 48 if you have other symptoms/positive tests). The reference range (ie. what is considered "normal" or non-diabetic) being around 20-40.

If you are still concerned than perhaps ask your doctor for an oral glucose tolerance test, but generally if your home monitoring tests are mostly falling in below 7.8 when you test after meals (and that should be 2 hours after meals, no sooner) then you are unlikely to test positive. The type of food you have eaten will effect how long after the meal your BG may stay higher. Low GI releases energy slower for longer, heavy carb meals (like pasta or rice where most of the meal I'd medium GI carb) can take several hours to digest. If the meal was quite high in fat the glucose release is slower.

You are doing all the right things, losing weight if needed, increasing exercise and reducing the amount of refined carbohydrate is all good. smile

The HbA1c used to be measured as a percentage but has recently changed to mmol so 33mmol is 5.2% in "old money", it isn't the same as 5.2 on a finger prick blood glucose by the way.

digerd Fri 07-Jun-13 06:53:58

I had a finger pin prick test at Boots ,after having 2 cups of tea with 2 sugars and milk 3 hours previously, and was 3.9 which I was told was a bit too low.
While with GP nurse, I mentioned it to her and she huffily did her own and announced it was perfect at 4!
For years on an empty stomach for all blood tests in Germany, my glucose was always a little too low <below the minimum range>.

Ilovesunflowers Thu 06-Jun-13 22:27:57

5.2 doesn't sound that high chipping. Isn't it an average blood glucose reading?

When I've eaten carbs my readings are between 6.0 to high 7s. Fasting readings have been between 4 and 5.4 (usually around 4.8).

ChippingInWiredOnCoffee Thu 06-Jun-13 21:49:12

Ilove - 33 is equal to 5.2 which is 'ok'. I'd be very happy with it, but it's at the top of acceptable for a non diabetic (IMO).

It essentially measures the amount of glucose 'sticking' to your blood.

If you have any specific questions, just ask and I'll do my best to answer. I've read so much about it I'm boring myself grin

It's a result that would (now) make me 'do something about it' as it would now make me realise I was borderline/at risk of becoming diabetic.

The NHS wont say it's a problem, because problem = expense - and it's not 'that high'.

4.8 is fine. What are your levels like when you have been eating carbs?

Ilovesunflowers Thu 06-Jun-13 14:43:30

Hi there. I eventually got my results back (can't believe it took so long). My HbA1c result was 33. I don't know what this means. Any ideas?
It didn't come up on the letter as a problem so I'm guessing it's not but I'd like to understand it. My glucose on the day was 4.8 but I hadn't had breakfast if I remember rightly as I was late for the train.

Footle Wed 22-May-13 09:39:02

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Ilovesunflowers Sat 18-May-13 11:46:11

Thanks everyone. Yes Footle I am doing exercise. Swimming or gym 6 x per week. 1 rest day. I also walk most places unless it's too far.

Footle Fri 17-May-13 16:34:16

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

RawCoconutMacaroon Fri 17-May-13 11:16:06

iLove, as I mentioned, that was the case with me- technically staying within "normal" levels, ie not spiking high after meals but staying higher than baseline for many hours. As I understand it, this is clear danger sign that action is needed to prevent further development of diabetes.

So you are doing the right thing. You are taking action, keep at it! Cut back further on carbs if your readings are not returning to baseline after about 3 hours... And look at which carbs make your levels stay high, because that is partly just down to how you react, it's not just about the gi!

Ilovesunflowers Thu 16-May-13 22:40:01

Sorry I should have mentioned my resultscan stay high for longer than 2 hours. They sometimes take a while to go down which worries me.

ChippingInLovesSunshine Thu 16-May-13 21:32:00

Ilove - glad you are reassured by 'The Crew' smile

Definitely ring tomorrow (mine are normally back overnight).

I think it's common to feel 'I brought it on myself' - I can't really help you with that one as I'm still processing it myself.

Well done on your weight loss!!

MrsHerculePoirot Thu 16-May-13 19:49:56

ilove sorry, I meant that being under 8 as non- diabetic after two hours is fine, sorry for the confusion! That wasn't very helpful of me. Your results will be on the computer system within 24 hours usually, you may well be able to ring for results? My GPs have a dedicated results line one hour a day you can ring and they will look up your results for you. I honestly think I high 7s are the highest you get after two hours following a carby meal you are fine and the lifestyle changes you have made are working. If worried try and ring, even if only for that one.

RawCoconutMacaroon Thu 16-May-13 15:38:43

MrsH, 2hr reading for non diabetics it should be less than for diabetics who are controlled... 8 is too high for a non diabetic, it suggests a problem is developing...

3 hour reading is really useful too - if its returned to baseline by then, that's good, suggests less insulin resistance ( staying elevated above baseline for many hours is not good, even if the peak level is still within the normal range). I was in that situation myself before cutting carbs and ditching grains.

Ilovesunflowers Thu 16-May-13 14:46:51

Thank you ladies. You've put my mind at ease. I am doing the 5:2 and have cut back on carbs for the last few weeks. I'm not totally low carbing though but my diet has changed a lot for the better. I had the tests an hour or so ago but because it was at the hospital it could be 2-3 weeks until the results. I guess I just need to accept I brought this on myself.

BIWI Thu 16-May-13 14:40:01

Sorry to hear you're scared, ilove. MrsHP is wise though, so I would listen to her.

Can I just ask - are you low carbing?

MrsHerculePoirot Thu 16-May-13 13:59:18

Ilove first of all STOP FREAKING OUT!. Upper 7s are NOT high readings after carbs at all. If I have carbs in a meal and no insulin my levels would be over 10. If I had a pasta based meal for example, they probably would be much higher than that again - I just can't eat like that now, so i don't know!

Under 8 two hours after meals is the aim for diabetics, for non-diabetics it is 10 or something so you honestly don't need to worry I don't think.

Pre-diabetes anyway as far as I am aware just means you'd get a talk about diet, lifestyle etc... and that they would repeat the HbAC1 test probably between 6 months and once a year to keep an eye on you. High 7s is not going to put you in this category if that is the highest your blood sugars are going.

Please don't be scared, even if it is the case then you have made massive lifestyle changes and will continue to do so. Wait until you have the results before worrying about what ifs for now.

Have a big virtual hug as well and let us know how your tests go. When are you having them done?

Ilovesunflowers Thu 16-May-13 12:44:06

Just checking in. How is everyone doing? Well today I went to see my consultant (for another condition). He is going to test my HbAC1 as part of a battery of other tests. I am really scared. I think I probably have prediabetes as I've had some high readings (but probably not high enough to be diabetes). What will a diagnosis of prediabetes mean? Constant doctor/nurse visits? eye tests? feet things? I can't really discuss this with anyone. No friends who I'm close enough to and my family would panic and would interfere (however I do worry they'll find out and would worry that I didn't tell them). I'm jumping the gun I suppose but my own testing results suggest with exercise my glucose levels are good but following carbs and no exercise they can go fairly high (upper 7's).

I've lost 1 stone 7lbs but a long, long way to go. I'm scared.

Footle Tue 07-May-13 19:24:01

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

RawCoconutMacaroon Tue 07-May-13 15:37:07

You have done amazingly well! I posted under a different name many times through the thread, and really, it is superb what you have achieved grin
HOWEVER, and don't take this as the wrong way, almost certainly, you are still diabetic, just very well controlled by diet alone, because you have adopted a way of eating which provokes almost no insulin response.

Yes, I know there are reports of cure, lasting a couple of years or more(usually in pre-diabetics, less often in full diabetes) but adopting a standard diet again would expose you to all those risk factors again, not wise as that ended in a diagnosis of type2 last time!
Almost certainly this is control plus improvement in your insulin resistance - not cure.

I don't think you will be able to get the diagnosis of type 2 removed from your medical records (dr dh says), it was a proper and correct diagnosis and the fact your levels are very good now doesn't Change that fact iykwim. He says he would not remove it as it is a historical fact and not a mistake...

Don't get hung up on that tho! Keep doing what you have been doing, and you can look forward to confounding your specialist nurse at your next review grin!!!!

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