How do you get someone you care for to go to an MD about being newly diagnosed?

By thegizzard Latest Reply 2012-02-04 20:49:15 -0600
Started 2011-06-10 17:56:09 -0500

My sister was recently told she has diabetes, but the doctor she has isn't even checking her BG on a daily basis. Is she safe when she goes to the MD every few months for bloodwork ? . And h ow do I approach her about doing BG?

26 replies

petero 2012-01-13 11:38:39 -0600 Report

Hug her,Love her, be part of the solution. Arguing over it is only push her in the wrong direction. Stay on her without being on top of her. Hope all works out

JSJB 2012-01-13 04:11:41 -0600 Report

I agree with jayabee. My doctor gave me a meter and said to check my bg every morning which I do. I also go for blood work. My levels are not bad but if I don't check them and keep on my diet they would be through the rood. So get you sister and have her start checking her oun blood sugar. About approaching her on doing bg, be direct.

jayabee52 2011-07-04 16:43:19 -0500 Report

Elizabeth, Your sister should be checking her own Blood Glucose every day, 3 times a day minimum. #1 would be immediately upon awakening, # 2 would be 2 hours after a meal (she can rotate meals after which she checks) and then #3 would be just prior to bed to see if she has enough BG in her to last her through the night.

To expect the Dr to do that for her is not good use of the Dr's valuable time, and unless she is a "special needs" person, I think it would be demeaning to her. If she is a responsible adult she should be able to do that and keep the results of the tests in a log book. As far as being safe, diabetes wise, if she tests her own blood regularly as described it would more than likely be safe. If she isn't testing her own regularly, she's gambling with her health, especially if she is not trying to control her eating.

I am kind of wondering if your sister is somehow a "special needs" person, or am I all wet?

Blessings to you and yours


terconi 2011-07-04 09:45:25 -0500 Report

i get my hemoglobin and ketones checked monthly, because i had ketoasidosis in january, its probly ok

jayabee52 2011-07-04 10:41:05 -0500 Report

Hey Teresa, I am wondering if you have a glucometer to check your Blood Glucose a minimun of 3 times a day. I get a little worried by your "probably OK" because ketoacidosis ("DKA") can come from very high Blood glucose readings, and those Highs can come at any time and often one doesn't feel bad because of them. But DKAs can put someone into a coma or even kill. If you don't have a glucometer, I urge you to get one so you can KNOW what your blood glucose is and how you are doing every day. Then you won't need to guess.

terconi 2011-07-04 16:10:10 -0500 Report

i have a one touch ultra mini, i developed ketoacidosis in january because i didnt know i had become diabetic. but my doctor thinks i need it checked once a month at least cus my hemoglobin was 14, double what its supposed to be. hes making sure they go down

jayabee52 2011-07-04 16:22:44 -0500 Report

I feel better now Teresa. What is Dr checking once a month? For DKA? Really that's the only thing that makes sense to me. If he's checking A1c once a month, it would seem a waste of an expensive test, because A1c is a moving average of your BG readings over a 90 day period. It would only change a little bit over a 1 month period.

How often do you test your BG numbers per day? If you check your BG numbers at least 3 times or more per day every day, and log them your log book should tell him what he really needs to know to help you manage your diabetes.

Marytea 2011-07-04 09:23:41 -0500 Report

My doctor did not suggest that i test either, but I realized there was no way I could know if I was getting better, if I was damaging my body, if I was worse, if I did not. I asked for a prescription and just started myself. Ask her how soon she wants to get better. She must have a way to check her progress and BG testing is the best way even if it is just twice a day. She is in my prayers.

Set apart
Set apart 2012-01-13 06:13:42 -0600 Report

Smart move on your part the only way to know we we are effective In What are doing and the food choices we're making is to check. I had to fight to get enough strips am allocated to chk 7 times a day. If I feel bad have to check more. Maybe I can reduce later as I know whAt usually works, but although my fingers are usually sore I check when in doubt!

camerashy 2011-07-03 22:49:37 -0500 Report

I didn't want to hear that my BG was out of control enough that I had to go on insulin. I was in denial. But when people started to find out that my regular level was anywhere between 300 and 550, (which I thought was normal) they freaked. Being in denial is normal. Staying in denial is dangerous.

jayabee52 2011-07-04 09:16:31 -0500 Report

I pray you got insulin and got your BGs down closer to normal! Going on insulin is not failure. It is just another tool to battle the beastie that is diabetes.

Lymy 2011-07-03 20:53:44 -0500 Report

I disagree with the change in Drs. Especially if she already has fobias' give he/she the chance to see her again. I had not read the other responses prior to posting mine, that is why I added a second response. The other suggestions you had - ie: what works for you and what doesn't, What foods to avoid etc… you could even go with showing her how and where to test, but if she is having frequent visits to the MD for lab studies I feel her MD is following her progress and will use good judgement in the starting time of her testing. (Don't turn her into yourself, by that I mean tell her just because something works or doesn't work for you does not mean she will have the same reaction.

Lymy 2011-07-03 20:38:18 -0500 Report

The Gizzard:
My Doctor did likewise with me. She told me she would not treat me until my BG got over 200. That frustrated me. I asked others why would she wait until after I reached 200? My husband gave me the best advice, he told me I had put my trust in this lady for the past ten yrs, why would I start to doubt her now? I bit my tongue and just thought about what he had said. I gained some patience and everthing worked out fine. (Not to say I enjoy or even like being a diabetic because I don't). Just stay close to your sister because there will be many difficult days ahead for her, listen to her, maybe not even giving her an answer but you being there for her will be a great comfort to her. Go with her (if she agrees) to see her Dr. Her MD will tell her when the time comes for her to start daily testing. It won't be long. What, if I may ask, is your sisters age and type of diabetes?

I know I speak for the DC membership in saying welcome to the community. Were glad you chose to be in our members. Please don't be a stranger we will always have your family's interest at heart and someone (probably lots of someones) will be only too happy to answer your questions, and offer their help.

Again welcome aboard!

GabbyPA 2011-06-11 08:16:16 -0500 Report

The love of a family member in trouble can be very confusing. There are so many emotions tied into it. Always show love and support and you can't go wrong.

The best thing is to learn things together so that you know what you are talking about when you are encouraging her to do things. Note: I said "encouraging" not nagging. You have to be careful to let her find her way as well. She will naturally go through a period of denial, anger, guilt, apathy and eventually it should work into a determination. Those phases take time and having support through them will help a lot. Share with her your feelings too. Diabetes doesn't just affect the one with it, it is a "family" disease and sometimes we forget that because we are so caught up in the daily management of it.

My doctor never spoke to me about getting a meter or testing myself. I was already doing that, but all he did was ask if I was testing. So one of the first things I would encourage her to do is to meet with her pharmacist and get a meter and have them help her with testing. She needs to call her doctor and ask him when he wants her to test. How often and what times of the day. It takes some time and practice, but she will get it down pretty fast.

Her doctor will most likely do blood panel testing every 3 months at first and as they work on a treatment plan together it will help them gauge what needs to be done. She should ask for a copy of her lab work so she can go over it with a fine tooth comb and teach herself to know what good and acceptable numbers are. Then her next visit, she will be able to see progress and ask questions about the items he may not cover with her.

A lot of doctors say things to patients thinking they understand. She may have to stop him and ask questions. If you go with her to a visit or two, that may help her have the courage to have a voice with her doctor. I had to learn and taking my husband a couple of times gave me the start I needed.

I would also encourage her to come here for a visit. Get involved and ask her questions here. We understand where she is coming from and can help her through the bumps. She is blessed to have you care for her in this way.

Harlen 2011-06-10 18:58:30 -0500 Report

I would just ask her if she feels that she is getting her ,omeis worth by going to a Doc that dosent help her deal with whats rong ???
You can never make somone do whats needed doing.
I would express how you feel as well
Best wishes

thegizzard 2011-06-11 06:45:38 -0500 Report

Thanks; it helps me to talk it out, but she's shy of doing more than she is as she's never been sick before and has a phobia of hospitals. I have an extra meter and suppllies. Should I show her how to use them and get her to see a doc? I do worry, because I have a lot of conditions myself and am used to procedures, etc. How do I get her to act without fear of the disease? I do explain things like what she should be eating, what helps and what doesn't , but again, she's afraid.

eristar 2011-06-11 06:56:42 -0500 Report

Has she done any reading/research on the subject? That might help her feel a bit more in control. Did I read correctly that she was not even given a meter and shown how to test herself? I think she needs to see another doctor, especially if she has a hospital phobia. Better to find a new MD than to find herself in a hospital having a crisis! In the meantime, offering to help her test at home might be a good start. You're a good sister!

sweetpea646 2012-01-13 14:01:51 -0600 Report

I was recently diagnosed with diabetes and my doctor put me on metformin and he will let me know when i should be checking my bg levels. Im on here, its helpful.

classof78 2012-01-13 19:17:46 -0600 Report

I didn't get one from the dr either, but he gave me the option of meeting with him or going to a diabetes educator. I chose the educator partly because all they do is deal w/ diabetes, and partly because of the scheduling. The dr sent over all of my info, and the educator gave me a meter that would have the best price on the strips based on my insurance. The first meeting was a couple weeks after my diagnosis, and my numbers were not real bad as he had been keeping an eye on it for a while. (both my parents have it also)
I figured my dr could easily get called away to deliver a baby or some other urgent thing, and the educator was able to shcedule a full hour, then classes with a group.
In my case, I think my dr would have been every bit as helpful, I just made the choice.
However, my INSURANCE told the pharmacist to cut the number of strips by 1/2 to 50/month. When I told the dr, he said he didn't know where they got their info, but it wasn't from him. Shortly after, I got a letter from the ins,saying I could go bck to 100/mo indefinately.

Caroltoo 2012-01-13 14:16:21 -0600 Report

I'm glad you are on here and it helps you by making information and support available to you.

Like you, my doctor didn't give me one. He sent me to a diebetic educator who did show me how to use one and told me why I needed to. Then the doctor gave me one at my next visit.

Like you are expressing, the process felt perfectly OK to me at the time. Looking back on it, I"m appalled that he would not have taken the time to do this on the first visit. I "flew blind" for 2 months and, while I knew I was doing what I should be w/r/t diet and exercise, I had no idea of how good or bad I was actually doing!!

Since my BG was 400 when diagnosed and I could easily have gone into ketoacidosis with all my exercising (not that anyone warned me about that possibility), I now find this close to malpractice!

jayabee52 2012-02-03 19:03:42 -0600 Report

I have noticed this occuring with newly Dx'd prediabetes persons who come to DC. Drs giving the "preDs" metformin and not giving them meters or instructions to check their BGs or how often to check. It is almost as if the Drs were setting these preDs up to fail, and were counting on their developing full blown diabetes. I have called that "borderline malpractice"