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Thread: Things you need to know when heading to the hospital

  1. #1

    Default Things you need to know when heading to the hospital

    Maybe this should be a sticky? I think that the first trip to the hospital AFTER a diabetes dx is the most daunting learning experience ever. You thought it was hard to learn about diabetes. Well, now you know about diabetes and will soon learn that not many medical professionals know as much as you do. Here are my tips for heading to the hospital:

    Bring your own supplies- insulin, blood sugar meter and plenty of strips, pump supplies or syringes, blood ketone strips and meter (if you use them), snacks, glucagon, etc. Even pack a toothbrush and change of underware. You never know how long you will be there.

    Take notes- we all learned from another parent's experience last year that notes are a must. Keep a pen and paper right out on the side table so they know you are taking notes. I think it might keep them on their toes too.

    Remember that ketones need insulin! Westin has been hospitalized to treat high blood sugar and ketones and low blood sugar and ketones. Either way, they need insulin. The last time Westin was in the hospital it was after a shot of steroids. They wanted to admit us for the high blood sugar. When we got there, they wanted to wait for drs order to give insulin. I gave it to him anyway. Sometimes you have to take matters in your own hands.

    Call your endo and let them know you are there! This can be important to getting the proper treatment.

    Anything I have missed, please post it!

  2. #2

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    Not sure I would agree with the statement that low bgs combined with ketones are best treated with insulin.
    Sarah
    Mom to DD now 16, dx @4
    Cozmo pumper @6
    Minimed pumper @13
    G4 @ 15


    "Happy Birthday, Dr. Banting! Now... let's eat cake! Because, we CAN!" - MCS

  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sarah Maddie's Mom View Post
    Not sure I would agree with the statement that low bgs combined with ketones are best treated with insulin.
    The only thing missing is that you need carbs first in order to use the insulin for low bg and ketones.
    Mary,
    Mom to Melissa, 29, using Dexcom, 24/7 since 4/10, and T:slim started March 2014. Michael, 34 using MDI's and Dexcom. Melissa is intellectually challenged and needs a lot of help from us to manage her diabetes.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Johnson City, TN
    Posts
    2,279

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    Ketones HAVE to be treated with insulin. Even with low blood sugar. Especially if the low blood sugar/ketone issue is from stomach virus or other illness. The hospital needs to put in a dextrose IV to get the blood sugar up enough to administer the extra insulin needed if necessary. Ask your endo if you have any doubts about treating ketones with insulin.
    I like the list, most important one I wish I had when we went was to call the endo MYSELF. I made the mistake of believing since we gave them the information at admittance that they were in contact with the endos office. They weren't.
    Barb, Mom to:
    Sean, 9
    dxd 8-21-07
    Pumping w/ Animas 2020 since 3-04-08
    Dexcom 7+ since 09-09-09

  5. #5

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    Have the endo write orders that you can treat with insulin, check bg, etc.

  6. #6

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    If celiac is in the mix, it's helpful to pack your own snacks, and check EVERY plate that comes in. I can't tell you how many hamburgers came to Ava with wheat buns on them.
    Joy

    Mom to Ava
    Born 06
    dx 07
    Animas PING 2008
    Contact Detach
    Dexcom 7+ (the other love of my life)

    At the height of laughter, the universe is flung into a kaleidoscope of new possibilities.
    -Jean Houston

  7. #7

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    Bring your own insulin. A lot of the hospitals (at least around here) have exclusive contracts with drug companies to only use their products. When Christopher was admitted last winter, he needed orders from the admitting doc to use his own Novolog, since they didn't have it in the hospital and wated to switch him to Humalog.

    Also, if you can talk to the admitting doc, ask them to write that you can dose insulin as you would at home. They were trying to get Christopher to eat anything, so we would order mac and cheese, bananas, etc. They wouldn't let us adjust upwards for the pasta, etc. The doc finally wrote an order to allow the parents to dose Novolog as done at home.

    Jen
    Jen
    Mom to Christopher, age 5, dx 1/6/2009 at 20 months.
    Omnipod with Novolog since 10/12/2009

    And now, Mom to Benjamin as well!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Medford, Oregon
    Posts
    2,391

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    have someone come home and grab your childs favorite foods when they are well enough to eat-otherwise you'll be stuck there longer not being discharged because no one wants to eat splenda pears and grilled cheese that's been on the cart for hours. Also bring a scale, most hospitals use the usual 15 carb increments for foods, and with toddlers that is so not happening. If your toddler will only drink out of certain sippy cups-bring those too.
    When you are in the ER, make sure you have your endo's phone number, otherwise the hospital will call the pediatrician-this can take forever while the clock is ticking away. Some hospitals don't know that a pediatric endocrinologist will know more than a pediatrician, even if you are in the hallway screaming at them.
    Ask your pediatrician if they had a very sick child, which hospital would they bring them to? Go to that one if at all possible. If you feel like your child is not getting the care they need, demand a transfer. It will cost you more if you have sucky insurance but it is worth it.

    Alison, mama to Tony (6 years old), diagnosed 5/10/07 at 20 months old on MDI, lantus and novolog. He also has hypotonia and developmental delays
    Gemma Lynn 9/04/08-tested for trialnet 8/10 results negative

  9. #9

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    Bring snacks. Or $$ for vending machines. I've lost a few pounds in hospitals because I have no cash for the vending machines and the cafeteria was closed!
    Brenda, dx'd type 1 6/07 at age 30 while in the TrialNet research study. MDI Lantus and Novolog, Celiac (3/07).
    Mom to Carson, age 13, dx'd at 9 months. Cozmo (1/05) Navigator (3/09), Dexcom (8/10), currently on T-Slim (4/13)
    And Mom to Henry (nond), age 10, training for the US 2024 Mens Gymnastic Team

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jen_in_NH View Post
    Bring your own insulin. A lot of the hospitals (at least around here) have exclusive contracts with drug companies to only use their products. When Christopher was admitted last winter, he needed orders from the admitting doc to use his own Novolog, since they didn't have it in the hospital and wated to switch him to Humalog.
    Just as an FYI, most people find Novolog and Humalog to be completely interchangeable. If they weren't, hospitals would probably have both of them on hand.
    Jill - adult type 1.
    Minimed Revel pumper.

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