Looking for help to some questions please

Rdskins Fan
By Rdskins Fan Latest Reply 2009-01-27 15:09:02 -0600
Started 2008-12-20 18:56:37 -0600

hi, I'm newly diagnosed, 11/08, and caught in within one year of getting it, I am taking novolin 70/30 first, i have gained 30 lbs, in a very short time, i have the worst gas I have ever had, and my stools are like mud, only once in a while do i have firm stools anymore, also, lost feeling in my right pinky, pain in my arm, right arm, whats going on?

24 replies

jsd2005 2009-01-27 15:09:02 -0600 Report

Dear RDKSKINS fan,
I certainly don't have the answer, but would like to offer some insight as long as you don't mind.

First, I have a number of questions that come to mind. For instance. How long have you been on the insulin? What are your blood sugars running? What type of diet are you on?

I'm not convinced the insulin is the culprit and lean more to the diet side of things. You do need to talk with you physician. These are some of the questions I would suggest you ask (or talk about). You need to also take notice and really think about what you see and how you feel Okay?
1. Do you have irregular bowel movements?
2. Is your stool normal?
3. Do you have diarrhea more than usual.
4. How much fiber is in your diet?
5. Are your stool bloody or black in color?
6. Do you experience pain or cramping with bowel movements?

These questions investigate important issues related to your digestive system. An answer such as my stools are like clay, leads me to consider the possibility of bleeding. Generally Clay or black colored stools suggest an upper GI bleed and Bright red, or darker red color suggest lower GI bleeding. Pain is also important to understand. What type, what precedes it, what are you eating when it happens, what are you doing when it happens, is it relieved with meds, rest or after bowel movements? If you diet has considerably changed, it may also play a factor in your digestive systems response. I would consider seeking the advice of a gastroenterologist after speaking with your family physician. There are a number of tests he can perform which can assist him in deciding what the next step should be.

Sparrow - 16557
Sparrow - 16557 2008-12-27 15:33:28 -0600 Report

One of the side effects of taking insulin is weight gain. One of the reasons is because now your body can "use" the sugar you consume (carbs). But that also means that whatever you don't "burn off" with activity, will get stored as fat. That's why you have to balance your carb consumption, insulin use, and excersize.

The pain may just be from your injections (if your arm is where you're injecting). It's possible you're injecting too hard or may need a shorter needle. You should DEFINITELY talk to your dictor.

Pauline B
Pauline B 2008-12-24 11:53:12 -0600 Report

I agree with the concepts present by both Toma and KD and have to stress that sometimes the doctors and authorities do not have all the answers. The three of us, and probably many more, have managed to figure out what is best for our bodies in dealing with diabetes and other medical conditions we are so blessed to have because we question and research research and what's going on beyond the popular press.

I have been taking 1000 mg metformin since 2002, and that's the only antidiabetic drug I take. My A1c is 5.5, and I've lost 50 pounds. Seattle has been blesses with a white Christmas and I've been able to shovel the snow. We cannot let our medical conditions get in the way of enjoying life. The onlt diet modication I have made is to cut back on the "white" carbohydrates, eat more nuts, and eat real fats, not manufactured fats (I.E. "junk foods"). My body seems to deal with this OK as a recent calcium test of my heart showed no plaque build-up in the coronary arteries.

So, my advice is to ask your doctor for some additional tests, now that you are diabetic. Ask for a echocardiomgram and a calcium score. That way you know how to base your diet, and then you can figure out how much insulin you may need. I assume your are Type 1. If Type 2, why start our with insulin right away? I've read that some authorities are adding insulin to the treatment regime immediately right off the bat, but it doesn't make sense to me.

By the way, professional, before retirement, I was a healthcare Food Service Director with a degree from Oregon State.

Toma 2008-12-24 10:59:36 -0600 Report

Hi Redskins Fan,

A agree with gabby about the meds but first let me say, medicines are great when they are really needed and there are times we cannot heal without them. On the other side of this coin most meds are toxic and have undesirable side effects. Unfortunately the best information about using a proper diet to control blood glucose and type 2 diabetes is not coming from mainstream medicine and sources we would expect to have it right such as the ADA. (both of them)

I believe over 80% of type 2 diabetics could be prevented or reversed with proper diet. My advice would be to become fanatic about a good diet and eliminate the need for medications and all their undesirable side effects. I have done so and so have many others. It is impossible to condense all I have to say about diet into a reasonable size post so I will just direct you to my website. (1700+ pages) The most relevant stuff is in the tab under “Healthy Diet” lots of good stuff in the rest of the site but that is the core info. There is also a free 174 page PDF that is the Reader’s Digest version of the site. (Upper left corner)

The site is http://www.Diabetic-Diet-Secrets.com Hope you find it helpful.

kdroberts 2008-12-24 11:35:09 -0600 Report

Although I don't agree with the 80% of type 2 being preventable or reversible I do agree that diet and exercise should be the foundation of managing any form of diabetes. It's not just about blood sugar, it's about the body as a whole as diabetes affects so many different elements. You have to eat well and exercise well in order to take care of every aspect and minimize the potential of complications. Medication may be needed even with the best diet and exercise programs and they may also may be needed in the start to help kick off the management so people shouldn't feel like they've failed if they have to take them.

However, if you are living just to manage your diabetes then you are not doing yourself justice. You should manage diabetes to live. If something is not working right for you, you don't feel good, unwanted side effect, complications developing, etc, then you go back to your doctor, tell them and explore the other options. Do that until you get the right treatment for you.

GabbyPA 2008-12-21 10:15:39 -0600 Report

I just started taking metformin and am having some trouble with it too. Very similar to your issues. It seems that the medicines take some getting used to. I am also experiencing acid reflux that I had gotten rid of since changing my diet, so I am not too happy about that. My mom, who also takes metformin, says that it will eventually go away as my body gets used to it. I sure hope so.

Our bodies are smart. Most medicines are just a form or poision, so no wonder we struggle with what they do to us.

I see my doctor this week, so I have a list of questions to ask him. I think you should do the same. It might be a normal reaction, but that doesn't mean it is right for you. There are a lot of options out there, don't be afraid to ask.

jaclyncrystal 2008-12-22 20:37:52 -0600 Report

have been on the metformin for exactly 3 weeks now, when does your mom think we will start feeling better, could I please have feeling better for christmas(lol)jackie

Two painful feet
Two painful feet 2008-12-22 21:02:11 -0600 Report

Hi! I have been on metformin 11 days. 11 days awful pain pain in my stomach. I have gastroparessis and use fentenyl pain patches. Which is the strongest form of opiate and it didn't stop the pain. Salem Oregon is snowed in and no power at the clinic was closed so I couldn't contact the doctor today. I had to stop the metformin after my thick head finally figured that the pain was from the metformin. I'm still on actos until I can talk to my doctor. Sure could use your prayers.
Your Friend

Avera 2008-12-20 21:40:07 -0600 Report

Just wanted to say that it looks as if your questions have already been answered and very well in fact.. The best advice that everyone gave you is to ALWAYS ask your doctor your questions and if I were you I'd call and ask now. You don't have to wait for your next appointment. Call and say you need some answers now and if this medicine is not right for you,,,,,tell him you'd like to try another.


2008-12-21 10:00:08 -0600 Report

I agree that your questions have been answered to the best of everyones ability. And, as stated, the best thing to do is contact your doctor.

Richard157 2008-12-20 20:54:32 -0600 Report

I used 70/30 for several years. I had terrible highs and lows and gained weight. I gained 57 pounds eventually and I was diagnosed with insulin resistance even though I am Type 1. I was a Type 1 with a Type 2 symptom. That is called "double diabetes". I had to start taking a Type 2 medication (Avandia) and my insulin was changed to NPH and Humalog. I had success with that. I have lost half of the weight I gained and am now pumping insulin with Humalog alone. I am very healthy after 63 years of diabetes.

I advise you to stop using 70/30. Use Lantus or Levimir for basal and Humalog or Novolog for your bolus insulin. Count carbs and use the basal/bolus type of control. That is what gave me my health back before I started pumping. You should lose that weight before you become a double diabetic. Reducing your carb intake gradually to 100 grams per day and getting lots of exercise will enable you to do that. The fewer carbs you consume the less insulin you will need and the lower amounts of insulin will result in weight loss. I hope your doctor is an endocrinologist (diabetes specialist). An endo should approve of all these changes and may also recommend pumping for optimum control. Good luck!


jaclyncrystal 2008-12-20 20:48:50 -0600 Report

First talk to your dr. I have type 2 and take metformin, my stools will rival yours any day. I spend more time in that room of this house than any other, dr. put me on this drug because I said I would only take one take did not put on weight, and so far it is working, only been on it 3 weeks today and have lost 5lbs. be watching everything that goes in my mouth. Good luck. Please let us know what your dr. say. jackie

Goddess 2008-12-21 09:13:37 -0600 Report

What med made you lose the 5 lbs. in weight?

rbergman 2009-01-27 11:54:44 -0600 Report

I was on the metformin as well and yes the bathroom was the "living room" until my body adjusted to the medication, THATS how I lost the 8lbs, everything that went in, came right back out within an hour…I have since been taken off however and put on 70/30 mix insulin, still have some bathroom issues but not nearly as bad as while on the metformin pills.

caragypsy 2008-12-20 20:38:24 -0600 Report

That lost felling could be Diabetic Neuropathy. Please talk to your Dr. I have it and my Dr. has me on Gabapentin 900mg a day it is helping a lot. Cara

Rdskins Fan
Rdskins Fan 2008-12-21 04:50:56 -0600 Report

thsnk you

Babs341 2009-01-20 01:39:27 -0600 Report


I am also on Gabapentin(neurontin) for neuropathy in both legs & feet. It works really well for me. Because of other medical problems I am currently on many different medications daily, and they can cause: weight gain, bowel problems. Write down all of the problems you are having and "please, please" let your doctor know what's going on.

Best Wishes,

BethP 2008-12-20 19:49:32 -0600 Report

I was on 70/30 for a drug study and also gained weight. Are you checking you blood sugars? Mine came way down, in fact, I had several lows when on 70/30. Also, be sure to talk with your doctor about your symptoms.

Lanore 2008-12-20 19:42:59 -0600 Report

Hi Red and welcome, have you talked to your dr about the problems you are having? I think that would be the first place to go. I really can't help too much with your question, sorry. I have been diabetic for 20+ yrs and take lantas for three yrs but have not had the problem you have had. I hope someone else here cAN. Take care. Lanore ;-)