Does YOUR Doctor understand you?!

By DawnieD Latest Reply 2014-09-16 14:23:05 -0500
Started 2014-09-10 07:58:48 -0500

Hi! My names dedhead and I'm a diabetic…!
I have been attempting for the past several years to finally get control of my Type I (as opposed to the previous 20 when I just hoped it would all go away!!). Now, I have moved around often, so no history with any 1 doc (went 10 years without insurance and any doc; that was fun!). Over the past 6 months I have genuinely been trying to change my life pattern of obesity/morbid obesity. Man, do I wish for the good old days when your doc would give you drugs to help!!! Speed may kill, but it sure as hell also helps diet! I have for the first time in my life of 52 started exercising. Now of course my diet couldn't change overnight because of the amount of insulin I was on. It took 2 months to get to where I could start to count calories (my daily goal in 1200, which I usually don't meet). I've been brittle for years, so going low or high are not new experiences. Anyway, I know I'm obsessive, but I would feel more comfortable if I was ALLOWED 7 tests/day if needed. My doc thought she was being generous with a script for 4/d and I finally convinced her into 5, but she won't budge on any more. (Bummer, man, cause I was hoping to score some extra cash selling the extras to my friends…!) The closer I get to target calories with daily exercise, the more likely I am to go low. I've been working on not overcorrecting, cause that was a bad pattern too. By the time I got up this morning at 7:45, I was using my third strip. The only Endo that takes my insurances, while good, when presented with 5 months of carefully maintained records of dates, times, glucose, insulin, food, carbs, cals, exercise, and cals burned, with comments, on a self-created database, looked at the most recent month, said I did not need to lower my Lantus (that was 5 units ago), and wanted me to change my SS ratios fro 1:15 carbs to 1:10. Mo!!!rf!!!!ngA!shole!. Just to show I was willing to listen, I did try that ratio change for the next 2 days, went low constantly, and then went back to my own calculations. Am I just a nutty neurotic, or does someone have advise on what I can say to my PCP to get more test strips each day? (Luckily, a do have a great diabetic educator who has shown me how to calculate and does listen to me, but insurance mandates that I can't use any more 1:1 sessions with her, and I'm not a group personality!) O, and I already have severed neuropathy to the point I'm a fall risk.

14 replies

calayx 2014-09-16 03:11:28 -0500 Report

I guess I am very lucky. I'm on Medicare with a supplemental insurance, SCAN. I signed up for the diabetic SCAN insurance and get ALL my diabetic supplies free. I also can get as many test strips as I want. My ENDO will order as many test strips as needed because he knows that I'm paranoid about testing.
If you can afford it, I heard that Wal Mart is the place to go for inexpensive test strips.

DawnieD 2014-09-16 14:23:05 -0500 Report

Yeah, my insurance will cover for whatever the doc writes up in a prior auth letter. My newest meter connects to my computer for downloads and allows generation of reports, so I really am happy with it. I have a low copay for supplies, but my frustration is with the Doc not writing the prior authorization letter for as many strips as I feel that I need. My Endo agreed with the doc that all I needed was 4/d; I'm lucky I got it up to 5. But I have computer printouts going back to March documenting how often I test, the results, the insulin, the carbs, the exercise… I wish my docs would see that I also am paranoid about testing and just not limit me!

sandyfrazzini 2014-09-12 15:25:07 -0500 Report

I have found that the endocrinologist will usually write for more test strips than the PCP will. when you go low you are supposed to test and than treat and wait 15 minutes and test again and if you are still low repeat, well there is your whole days suppy right there. What do you do the rest of the day? Maybe take weekends off…lol now wouldn't that be nice. I have been very fourtunate with my endocrinologist, I am able to get more than enough supplies for my pump and monitor. Who knows what changes will come to my insurance at the beginning of the year.

keira114 2014-09-11 22:01:00 -0500 Report

I used to have insurance coverage for 10 a day (never used that many) my dr pretty much said if the insurance company was covering it might as well so weird that yours cares… have you considered a cgm? seems like you would really like it

DawnieD 2014-09-11 22:06:54 -0500 Report

What's a cgm? Is that one of those new internal automatic glucose monitors? Cause they look cool, but I doubt if my insurance would cover.

keira114 2014-09-13 20:29:21 -0500 Report

yes its a continuous glucose monitor checks every 5 mins and plots it on a graph… never hurts to try with the insurance company.. my cgm is through dexcom and if you contact them then they do all the hard work with the insurance company for you and then will let you know

DawnieD 2014-09-16 09:21:33 -0500 Report

Thanks! I had looked them up on the net before, but never thought about having them investigate with my insurance co.

GabbyPA 2014-09-10 18:06:18 -0500 Report

I hear you! Doctors just think we're all the same and don't take time to listen. I thought I found a good doctor, but all my notes and records I was keeping and my list of questions would just aggravate him. Eventually he just kind of quite listening at all, and I quit too...and it sucks. Being that disciplined is to be applauded and something many of us need. At least I need.

I would keep looking if you have that option. There has to be someone out there that will listen to you. Maybe even LEARN from you

IronOre 2014-09-10 12:43:16 -0500 Report

When I but strips over EBay I can get the cheaper than what my insurane provide, so I just skip the insurancewith my test strips

DawnieD 2014-09-11 20:53:07 -0500 Report

I've found a FreeStyle Insulinx monitor that connects my results, including insulin doses (when I remember to add them) and creates reports. But new provider means new script which means new prior auth letter from doc.

brazosbelle 2014-09-10 08:28:25 -0500 Report

You can get some pretty cheap test strips at Walmart with their brand of meter…$15 for the meter and $9 for 50 strips. I use these all the time for extras and have checked them against my Aviva and it is very accurate.
Also, I get my regular Aviva strips on Amazon at about 1/3 the cost…

Hope this helps…

DawnieD 2014-09-11 20:47:50 -0500 Report

Thanks. But I'm very fortunate in that my insurance does cover the cost of all supplies (with copays of course), but they require prior authorization and for a reason I don't understand, the most I can get out of my doc is 5 per day. I've had the insurance cover 7 before, so I know it's possible, but PCP doesn't think I need to watch my sugars so carefully. Thanks doc. I've had two over 400 in the past day, and earlier went low and then stayed low. I've been trying to figure out how to keep it better under control, but that requires serious work and more strips would sure make it easier. Like, I have enough anxiety (shrink gives me some decent meds) without adding this stupid argument about number of times I want to keep tabs on myself! Right?

DawnieD 2014-09-10 08:02:57 -0500 Report

Noted several typos in that; I don't actually have anything "severed" just "severe neuropathy!"

Next Discussion: New to Diabetes »