Sunday, December 26, 2010

Sammie's Story

        Today, our local newspaper ran a story about Sammie. I thought I would update our story from the beginning.
       Sammie has been  a Type 1 diabetic for almost 6 years.  The first 5 years , Sammie did not have any major complications. Her average blood sugars ranged between 170 - 190.  Last year , during basketball season Sammie started complaining of foot pain, after a game at Clay Sammie said "mom, I really think you should know my feet feel like there are asleep" Things began progressing fast, she was diagnosed with the beginning of neuropathy ( nerve damage).  The neuropathy did not stop with her feet, it is now in her hands. Our Neurologist explained that neuropathy in someone this age and with diabetes for only almost 6 years is rare. The doctor seemed concerned about the neuropathy possibly moving to the nerves on the inside. This could be stopped by having tight control of blood sugars, after a follow up with our diabetes doctor, we all felt sure the neuropathy would not spread.
     In July 2010, I took Sammie to her diabetes doctor because of random vomiting. Her A1c was great, 6.6. ( that is good, our average blood sugars were 160) Sammie went home thinking it was a virus. She would get better for a couple days and then the vomiting would start again. Our doctor this time tested her for celiac disease ( a disease where your body can not digest gluten ) , this test came back negative.  September 2010 , things fell apart. Sammie spent 5 days in Cabell Huntington Hospital. She left the hospital with a diagnosis, it was gastroparesis. The neuropathy had damaged her nerve that controls stomach function. Sammie's stomach is paralyzed causing severe nausea and vomiting. Our doctor tried many different medications that aid in stomach function, nothing helped. 
    Currently, Sammie is scheduled to get a gastric pacemaker implanted in mid January, at Nationwide Children's Hospital in Columbus. 
   Diabetes isn't something that happens to other people.  To people with a family history.  To people who are overweight.  It can happen to you.  

Know the warning signs.  Know they can occur suddenly.

  • Extreme thirst
  • Frequent urination
  • Sudden vision changes
  • Sugar in urine
  • Fruity, sweet, or wine-like odor on breath
  • Increased appetite
  • Sudden weight loss
  • Drowsiness, lethargy
  • Heavy, labored breathing
  • Stupor, unconsciousness

This is the reason I work so hard.  This is the reason I blog, I advocate, I educate, I care. 
Help us find a cure!

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