Bolus Advice: MDI With Less Math

A couple of weeks ago, my husband and I went to the beach for the day after church. It was a nice, cool, breezy day and it was good to get away and relax for a bit.

We were on our way home, and we stopped to get a frozen yogurt treat with the kids. I bolused with my pump, and half way through, I received an occlusion. The second one for that weekend.

True, this may not be a big deal, but it was the final straw for me. It’s true — occlusions are things that come with the territory when using an insulin pump, and that specific event isn’t what had me frustrated. It was a lot of things:  having a curious baby who likes to pull on my tubing, sites that were seeming to fail after just 2 days, and the more and more frequent “bleeder” sites.

That last occlusion was it. We made it home and I pulled out my Levemir backup pen that my endocrinologist always gives me to keep on hand in the case of pump failure. I had no idea how this was going to go, but my frustration outweighed my fear of the unknown-to-me territory of MDI (multiple daily injections).

I took my total basal amount, added 20%, took the injection, and unhooked my pump. It’s been in my desk drawer ever since.

As soon as I injected the Levemir and started to get ready to inject for supper, I felt overwhelmed by things like accurately calculating doses and keeping up with IOB (insulin on board), and I quickly emailed my Accu-Chek rep and pleaded with her to chat with me that night or the next day to set up my Connect App in my phone.

Why would I need her?

See, Accu-Chek now has a meter, the Accu-Chek Connect, that connects to your phone via Bluetooth, and you can see your readings, log food and insulin doses, and even program the app to text your readings to a family member if you need help.

It also has an option for Bolus Advice. With this enabled (via prescription from your health care professional), you can use the glucose number that is sent to your phone to calculate insulin doses if you are a MDI user. To me, this is great because it’s like having the best part of the pump without the pump!

The app even lets you see how the calculation works, and whether you need to increase for correction, decrease for active insulin, or if you’re low — how much food to eat. It’s really intuitive.

I honestly don’t know that I would still be on MDI if it weren’t for this app. I’m loving being pump-free without having to be bogged down with math.

I don’t know how much longer I’ll be on MDI, but I don’t feel as if I need to rush. I feel comfortable to be pump free as long as I have help calculating my doses and keeping up with active insulin — which is exactly what this system does.

While the meter was provided to me at no charge, I was not asked to review it. This is my honest opinion from the bottom of my heart. I cannot be more thankful that there is a company that not only wants to create an insulin pump product, but also to help those on MDI to have the best care possible.


1 Comment

Filed under dblog, Diabetes

One response to “Bolus Advice: MDI With Less Math

  1. Wendy

    I have had DM since I was 11, the weekend I went to Girl Scout Camp near Kalamazoo, Mi, & woke up in a bed-wet sleeping bag after my best friend Chris Summer’s Mom reached out to grab my arm as I was walk-ing past her bunk. “Wendy, if you don’t quit messing around…I’m gonna get you in trouble!” Well, I liked Chrissy’s mom & certainly didn’t want to cauce trouble! I had already woken up about 4-5 times that Sat. nite, to be forced, after holding it, out into the cold dark nite, w/o a flashlite, to stumble around to try to locate the outhouse! I was too scared of “the boogyman” then, to be scared by Chris’s Mom. The next summer, when they moved to Calif. & invited me to visit (1968), all was well. I was amazed, flying unto LA, at all the backyard swimming pools down there below me (seemed like almost every house had a pool!).
    When I got home Sun. afternoon, my poor little tummy was protruding, as I had been so-o-o thirsty, drinking sugary koolaid all day & eating cookies, that I was very ill. I’m sure my BS was in the 600 plus range w/ vomiting & tummy pain!
    My wonderful Dad, Dr. John C Babcock, who had a PHD in Bio-chem from Har-vard, a kind & compassion-ate heart & a special love for his last child, told me “I’m afraid you have DM young lady, & you will be spending the week at Bronson Methodist Hospital, after looking up my symptoms in the Meeks Manual, a Dr’s reference book!(in memorium, Thank you Dad, WW II survivor France/Germany, Prostoglandin researcher Upjohn Co. 1948-1990. Vice President Insite Vision, inventor of individual sterile eye drop dispensers, Master sailor of 40-ft sailboat The Penobscot, humble, kind & thoughful of others always before himself, attender of Stockholm’s Nobel prize in science, and wonderful Dad).
    Sun. nites were always special to me as we always ate dinner down in the rec. room, where the 1950s TV was, to watch “Lassie” & “The Wonderful World of Disney” in “Living Color”.
    Mom always fixed a special dinner, such as steak or roast beef & poatoes/gravy, with a special yummy dessert (she is still “captain of her home” at age 93, after all the cooking, tailoring & microwave classes she took As an adult, after gradu-ating from Juliard School of Music in NYC.
    As my family was carrying dinner dishes upstairs to wash, The Wizard of Oz” was on, with the Wicked Witch of the West threatening Toto & Dorothy, my little tummy was stretched out to capacity, I kept running to the BR to puke, & it was just Not Fair! I began crying, Dad came downstairs to hold & reassure me.
    After a week spent l w arming how to draw up insulin into a syringe to give shots to an orange, & Mom learning how to make such things as applesauce cookies (cooking w/ way less sugar), they were able to send me home.
    In 5th grade, at Winchell Elementary school, my Mom put some little cans of juice in a cupboard, in case I needed some sugar, and I performed ” urine tests”, the latest hi-tech test, where 10 dropper-fulls of water & 5 of urine were placed in a test tube, then a large dissolving “clinitest” tablet was dropped in to show a color from orange (high BS) to. dark blue (low BS), to mark in a record book in the main bath. We eventually figured-out a good insulin dose for me (approx 25 units throughout the day, which I am still on, except instead of 2 shots a day, I have been on a Medtronic pump since they became available in 1996. This spring I will have survived DM X 50 yrs, and Harvard’s Joslin Clinic wants to sample my DNA to see why I’m so healthy! They will give me a “Survived DM X 50 Years” medal at a ceremony, hopefully my sample & healthy good lifestyle will provide some answers for others. My advice= YOU CAN DO IT!

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