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  #131  
Old 06-05-2010, 08:10 AM
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eileen eileen is offline
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Default Re: Mini Schnauzer Gretel - Injection problems brewing!

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Originally Posted by CoolGram View Post
Thanks to all who responded. Eileen, your comment about the misinformation you've gotten from pharmacists really hit me. It's scary and very worrisome that there are pharmacists out there who are dispensing incorrect information. There are people (and animals) who are really depending on them to get it right, literally lives depend on it. Until Gretel was diagnosed, I just always assumed the pharmacists knew what they were talking about (you know - right up there with doctors - ha!). Now I know differently and it really scares me. Guess we can never afford to let our guard down, can we?

As I was typing this, I remembered that my husband has a customer who is a pharmacist in another town close by, and I've known him myself since school days (long long time ago ) I'm going to call him with my insulin question too.

Oh Eileen, in case I may have given the impression that I would go back and forth between the 2 insulins, no, I would never do that. I was just hoping that I would be able to make the switch to the Relion brand and stay there.

Carolyn
Carolyn,

I would much rather have a pharmacist tell me that he/she simply does not know rather than to pass off bad information.
One basic incident that really stands out in my mind is when a Walmart Pharmacist told me that ReliOn does not make syringes with half unit marks...I told him I've been buying them for years from HIS pharmacy...he got so insistent in telling me that there was no way I did and even went as far as telling me to 'take my business elsewhere'.

When I asked another about the differences between Humalog and Novolog he looked at me blankly and said, " what is Novolog?"

Several years ago a close friend of mine who is a medical doc herself with a diabetic dog encountered a pharmacist that was way off base in what he was telling her, so much so that she reported him for the safety of others.

I was by no means implying that YOU would go back and forth between the two insulins rather just stating a general suggestion based on the wording coming across that the two are interchangeable...didn't want others to think back and forth would be alright.
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Eileen and Mildred, 12 yo Border Collie Mx, 24.6 pounds, dx diabetic/hypothyroid 2004, gallbladder removed 2005, cataract surgery 2005, spindle cell sarcoma removed 2009, stroke 2009, tail removed 2011, dx with bladder cancer 2011, CDS, Organix~chicken / NPH,Humalog
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  #132  
Old 06-10-2010, 03:03 PM
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Default Re: Mini Schnauzer Gretel - Injection problems brewing!

Hello everyone,

Well, I bit the bullet and decided to try again to test Gretel. After much thought (and I do mean MUCH), I decided to try the ear as my next test site. I'm just very uncertain about the lip as I really don't think she'll tolerate that well, not to mention, being a schnauzer, she has a lot of hair around the mouth area.

Anyway, I put her in the kitchen sink as I was home alone and felt it was someplace where she couldn't get away from me. She was quite apprehensive, but I think only because she thought she was going to get a bath (that's where I give it to her).

I warmed the inside of her ear a bit with a warm cloth. I really wasn't sure what setting to use on the lancing device (it's a softclix). I actually stuck her 4 times, starting out on setting 2 on the dial, working my way up to 4. I was very pleased that she didn't move or flinch - HOWEVER, I never did get a drop of blood. I felt four stabs was quite enough to subject her to, so I'll try again in a day or so.

I'd love to know what setting any of you use who are testing on the ear. I certainly thought 4 would be plenty high enough, but apparently not. Guess the only thing I can do is work my way slowly up the dial till I get blood.

Just wanted you know that even though I've been quite wimpy about doing it, I haven't given up yet.

Oh, and her last curve (Monday of this week) was 205 at 9:00am (2 hrs. after eating and insulin), 236 at noon, and 346 at 3:00pm. The vet bumped her up from 13-1/2 units to 14 and will do another curve in one month. The reason I'd really like to begin testing is because we're working to get her triglycerides down and if they get low enough she may require less insulin, and a month is a long time to wait for another test, even though I know the vet would spot test before the curve if I requested it. But at least that much I'd like to be able to do myself.

Carolyn









Carolyn
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  #133  
Old 06-10-2010, 03:51 PM
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Default Re: Mini Schnauzer Gretel - Injection problems brewing!

Hi Carolyn,

Quote:
I'm just very uncertain about the lip as I really don't think she'll tolerate that well, not to mention, being a schnauzer, she has a lot of hair around the mouth area.

I thought that about Ladybug from the very beginning....no way Jose on the lip area! She also has a lot of hair in the lip area. But, you fold back the lip and prick on the inside of the lip, not the outside. There are no nerves there so there is no pain or discomfort for the dog. I started with the ear, went to the paw pad and finally went to the lip and finally found my success with the lip area. Blood every time on the first prick!

I may be wrong, but I think that the blood that you get from the ear is venous blood which doesn't work very well with home testing meters. These meters are to be used with capilliary blood. I'm sure someone will come along and correct me!

Good luck!

Linda/Ladybug
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  #134  
Old 06-10-2010, 04:07 PM
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Default Re: Mini Schnauzer Gretel - Injection problems brewing!

Thanks for your response Linda. I will probably decide to give the lip a try eventually. Just knowing Gretel as I do, I just haven't thought that she would be very accepting of me messing around her mouth. Of course I didn't think she'd let me do it on her ear either, and she did.

I tried not to be nervous, but I was - couldn't help it. This was my second attempt at testing and the first time wasn't any better - in fact it was worse. I used the lancet alone and tried to stick her in her dew claw pad and I couldnt draw blood there either but I'm sure I was being timid about pricking her and probably didn't do it quite hard enough, but I didn't want to hurt her and she was acting like it did hurt.

With a diabetic dog you find out there are a lot of things you can do that you wouldn't have thought possible. I'll keep trying!

Carolyn
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  #135  
Old 06-10-2010, 04:37 PM
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Default Re: Mini Schnauzer Gretel - Injection problems brewing!

Hi Carolyn,

Everyone here says to breathe normal....don't hold your breath. If you are tense and hold you breath, Gretel will know and that will tense her up also.

I was an absolute mess when I was first attempting to test! But now, I always talk to Ladybug the whole time we are testing. Sometimes I even sing....just hum some notes, not any specific song, whatever comes into my head! Trust me, I can't carry a tune, but it works! She relaxes and so do I!

You will make it and then all the members will welcome you to the "Vampire Club"!

Linda/Ladybug
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  #136  
Old 06-10-2010, 05:06 PM
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Default Re: Mini Schnauzer Gretel - Injection problems brewing!

I have used the ear successfully ever since Bella was dx. It works well for me, though every dog is diferent. You can hit a vein there, but they are easy to see, and to miss. The capillary from the rest of the ear works, and the odd time I have hit a vein by mistake, the reading is the same...but a bit more blood than the timy drop I am after.

Bella does not even wake up if she is asleep when I test, so it works well for me. I use #4 on the lancet, and mine only goes from 1-5.

Good luck, you will do fine, just takes a bit of practice.
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  #137  
Old 06-10-2010, 05:33 PM
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CarolW CarolW is offline
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Arrow Re: Mini Schnauzer Gretel - Injection problems brewing!

H Carolyn,

GOOD FOR YOU, for giving testing another try! It really does take guts - and time to screw your courage to the Sticking-Place. You DID it! Good for you.

I'm so pleased that Linda/Ladybug has joined in to give you a helping hand as well. Thanks, Linda!

I see that as early as 3 June, I was anticipating Kumbi's death - but I thought it would be by euthanization. Anyway, I asked a favorite neighbor to use my camera to take some pictures to show some desensitization methods to help a dog learn to accept a lip-prick. My delightful neighbor did as I asked, and I was astounded - had had no IDEA how good she is with a digital camera - point-and-shoot, but still, not easy to use. She must be practiced somehow, perhaps taking pictures or children and animals!

However there are a couple of different angles, and we only photographed one of the two - a gross omission on my part. So three days later, I asked again, Sunday 6 June, and my neighbor again obliged).

So now I have a collection of pictures I need to select from, and edit, and then get onto web pages.

I know Kumbi, who didn't care for being tested, was VERY happy to help, because somehow, he surely knew the testing was helpful to keep him quite comfortable!

When I have the pictures and web pages ready, I'll let you know.

Keep up the good work, Carolyn. I think your decision to quit after four stabs was right on. And Ladybug's reminder about breathing was very important, too.

I can't remember who talked about venous blood - whoever did was absolutely right, but the blood you get when you prick the ear correctly IS capillary whole blood; you don't want to hit the vein.

Using the kitchen sink is an excellent idea. Good work!

Back later!

Love,

Thu, 10 Jun 2010 16:26:26 (PDT)
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  #138  
Old 06-10-2010, 05:39 PM
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Default Re: Mini Schnauzer Gretel - Injection problems brewing!

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Originally Posted by CoolGram View Post

The reason I'd really like to begin testing is because we're working to get her triglycerides down and if they get low enough she may require less insulin, and a month is a long time to wait for another test, even though I know the vet would spot test before the curve if I requested it. But at least that much I'd like to be able to do myself.
When Mildred's triglyceride level was over 3300 her vet put her on an all veggie diet, within 2 weeks her recheck showed her level had dropped to the low side of 'normal', under 100.

Not sure if I have posted this to you before but Mildred had a stroke because of the sludge in her blood, caused by the high triglyceride level.

Leading up to this her insulin needs kept climbing and once her triglycerides were back on track the insulin requirement did drop dramatically as well as much more consistent readings.

Being able to blood test is a very necessary tool.
Early on I used Mildred's ear but later found her lip to be much, much better.
I do not use a lancing device but only the lancet in hand, gives much better control and without the intrusive noise or equipment.
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Eileen and Mildred, 12 yo Border Collie Mx, 24.6 pounds, dx diabetic/hypothyroid 2004, gallbladder removed 2005, cataract surgery 2005, spindle cell sarcoma removed 2009, stroke 2009, tail removed 2011, dx with bladder cancer 2011, CDS, Organix~chicken / NPH,Humalog
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  #139  
Old 06-17-2010, 05:43 AM
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Default Re: Mini Schnauzer Gretel - Injection problems brewing!

Well, last night I gave testing another try. We're getting there, but still not successful in getting a reading. I tried the ear(s) again, this time setting the Softclix to 5. I also warmed the ear(s) first. Even massaged her ear to try to get the blood "flowing". I did get a drop of blood, but it wasn't enough, even though I gently squeezed her ear to try to enlarge the drop. No luck. I ended up making 3 attempts on one ear and 2 on the other, but even though I did get a tiny bit of blood each time, it wasn't enough. I only used one strip, on the blood drop that seemed like it might be just big enough, but it wasn't. I got an error message.

Let me backtrack, by saying that I felt rather desperate to obtain a reading because she seemed a bit restless and was panting rather heavily, even though at that point it wasn't too warm in the house and she hadn't been active. I was just a bit concerned that maybe her BG had gone low.

So, normally I would have stopped before stabbing her that many times, but she was being really good about it, so I continued on in the attempt. As a last-ditch effort, I decided to try the lip. She actually let me do it and didn't resist at all. But again, no luck. Not even one tiny blood drop - nothing.

Now I'm wondering if the lancets are just too thin? I don't see a gauge anywhere on the box. I know some of you have suggested using the lancet by hand, but at this point I just don't think I can (or want to) do that. I did try it on the pad a couple of months ago, and she hated it and tried to get away from me, it really seemed to hurt her.

Does anyone out there have any advice? I must say though, that I feel I have made great progress in that I now know I CAN do it and she WILL allow me to do it, all I need is that blood drop!

Oh, her symptoms disappeared after about 1/2 hour and she seemed fine the rest of the night, so not sure what that was all about, but I'm finding when you have a diabetic dog, you're suspicious of EVERYTHING.


Carolyn
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Carolyn & Gretel - 12 yr. old mini-schnauzer - diag. Jan 2010 - lost her courageous battle with multiple issues on Feb. 17, 2014. So sadly missed by her family.
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  #140  
Old 06-17-2010, 07:32 AM
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Default Re: Mini Schnauzer Gretel - Injection problems brewing!

Carolyn,
My experience with the ear was very difficult. Like you, I just couldn't get enough blood no matter what I did. Mildred and Annie seemed to do just fine with the method. It's really individual I think.

I'm so glad Gretel let you handle her lip! When I do Ali's I lift up her lip so I'm lancing the inside portion part way down and across from her canine tooth (like in Natalie's video of Chris). Play around with the location just a little. I've found that if you get too far back or forward, you don't get as much blood. Right across from that canine tooth area seems to yield the best results for us.

And you're right, different lancets do make a difference. I had the hardest time getting blood with the OneTouch lancets but it was a breeze with the AccuChek.

Cheering you on Carolyn!
Patty
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