Living life to the full with diabetes - patient story Medtronic MiniMed insulin pump

By: Medtronic Diabetes Europe, Middle East, Africa

I was diagnosed with Type 1 on the 1st of August 2006 and I was eight years old. I used to play football, well, I still do play football, like, for a regular local team. Diabetes, I didn't let it stop me. I didn't let it get in the way. I still wanted to be George, myself.

When I was diagnosed, first of all, I was really, really confused because to find out that you've suddenly got to go onto two injections a day, constant finger pricks, managing your food, what you eat, when you eat, what times you have to get up... It was really scary, because everything changed within a day. To sum it up in one word, it was horrible. You've got no control whatsoever.

For example, when you're eating meals, if you have pasta, it's going to release over a long amount of time, and if you can only have an injection for insulin that lasts 20 minutes, that means that your sugar is going to be everywhere - you're going to go low and then high. And that has a massive effect on your mood, as well. While I was on MDI, I felt like a completely different George. When I first saw the pump, I was sort of torn between all for it and completely against it.

And then I saw everything that it could do, and how much control it would bring. Then I knew it was exactly what I needed, and there was no way I was going to stop trying to get one. Since I've been on the pump, my glucose control has improved dramatically. From six months of getting the pump, my HbA1c was within range.

Living life to the full with diabetes - patient story Medtronic MiniMed insulin pump

So, to go from crazy diabetes, glucose everywhere, to controlled, within six months, was fantastic, and now I'm down to 6.8, which is even better. If you're a teenager, the social implications of how it looks is amazing, because nobody really knows. It just looks like a phone. My pump helps me loads, because I don't have to get loads of kit out whenever I need to do my injections. I can go to the shop and have a snack with friends, and put the numbers in straightaway and it's done, as opposed to not having food and feeling left out.

It's so convenient. It's really easy to manage. It's absolutely fantastic. Since I've got the pump, I've got that freedom back. I can be more spontaneous.

I don't have to follow a routine. I think it's just fantastic to be able to control your diabetes so easily. The pump means the world to me, and I'd never go back to injections again. If you have the chance to get one, then I'd definitely go for it.

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