diabetes, the bane of my existence (very long post)

  1. Hello all,

    I usually lurk here in the shadows, occassionally throwing a coment in here and there. I thank you all for being around, even more lately. Some may remember about a year and a half ago, I gradually developed the most horrible pain in my feet and just felt like a balloon with no air left. I thought (like many of us do) it was just work; I have always worked full-time nights, on my feet in a busy ER and Part-time in a NICU. I got a bite that would not heal (Insect) and went to doc several times...we finally drew lab and surprise my glucose was over 900. Needless to say...went in on Insulin IV etc....Got sugars down and kept them in 100's to 200's (am very very resistant). I take 100 units of N TID and 100 units of novolog TID alond with a sliding scale from below. It took endo 3 months to get down to that dose (no the zeros are not typos) (metformin and byetta are helping) I hate going in the hospital because my fellow nurses think I am an idiot when I tell them my doses...even with documentaton already on file. Anyway, finally got my feet under control and things were much better.

    Then, about 9 months ago, while at work; I suddenly couldnt see out of my right eye. then I noticed little hairs across my left eye. Finished shift out of necessity. Went to eye doc that day. Surprise....hello retinopathy and bleeds. Had bilateral Vitrectomies and the laser surgeries(twice). Now I can not see to drive, chart, start iv's on large muscled guys with ropes for veins much less babies. Everything is curvy and unfocused to see. I also have developed uncontrolled HTN that we cant seem to get meds to take care of (we have tried many). I lost from 320 lbs to 180 and that still hasnt helped. I also have developed SVT....had a heart cath gone bad (developed pseudoaneurysm, had to have thrombin injections) But dig has controlled the svt since then along with atenolol.

    Well, through everything but the loss of vision I have kept working, but I dont now because I feel that I am unsafe because i am not able to see what I am doing. While working, the EMS brought in a patient, we went to move him (6 foot, 220 lbs) we went on three....but the patient was still strapped to the ems stretcher (ems student forgot that strap and the blanket was over it). well, we all know, force goes somewhere....well, my back audibly popped and bam...herniated disc. Cant have surgery, doing PT, helps some but not much....My doc put me on duragesic patches....I chose to quit taking them (I didnt do anything but sleep on them)but the withdrawal was a tiger. We made it through that though. I now take nothing because my doctors cant decide who should address what...I would love it if we had a pain clinic here. I am maxed on neurontin, tramadol, and diclofenac.

    I have also developed gastroparesis and vomit often and always feel nauseous. I just had a bezoar broke up in my stomach and was put on reglan. have more test this coming week to get an "official" diagnosis. It almost seems funny to do the test now....it seems that forming a "bezoar" of "rotting vegetative matter"(as my gi put it)would be enough.

    You know I just looked back at my post....maybe I should write a book.:chuckle (i just did) Well, the point of this post is just that I am so discouraged and a little depressed. I feel so lost...work is what defined me and what I was...I am having a little trouble finding myself and seriously wonder what I can do to have a quality of life. I enjoy your posts, my daughter reads them to me sometimes. If get the fonts big enough I can read them on my own. I have applied for SS but still have 2 more doctor appts to go through, it has been 5 months total of waiting so heres to more waiting.
  2. Visit Silkiebyrd profile page

    About Silkiebyrd

    Joined: Nov '07; Posts: 17; Likes: 16
    from US
    Specialty: Pediatrics, ER, and NICU


  3. by   Silverdragon102
    I am so sorry you are having a rough time but glad to see you are still posting and even get your daughter to read some of the posts
  4. by   68RN
    I am so sorry for all you are going through. You can look up my posts to see my road to disability. I was gaving alot of GI issues- gastroparesis as one of them and my internist put me on an antibiotic-clarithromycin and it has helped me alot. I remain on it forever. I also have several autoimmune diseases.
    I was also defined as being a nurse and in 6 years cannot find a new normal, I guess if I felt better, it would be easier. I need to loose some weight, but it is hard when you are inactive as I am.
    Hang in there and know lots of people here care and you know you are not alone. That alone helps alot!!!! Good luck!!!
  5. by   Lorie P.
    so sorry you are going through all this mess. try to hang in there, disability takes a while and most people give up before they actually see any results.

    just having to see so many diffirent doc's doesn't help either, been there and one doesn't want to do anything because it's not his/her specialty or one does one thing and another changes what the previous doc did.

    come here any time to lurk, vent or just share what you are going through.

    hugs to you!
  6. by   SuesquatchRN
    I don't have any answers, but i want to let you know that you are in my thoughts.
  7. by   pooh54
    So sorry for you, lots of hugs! Hang in there, I'm also applying for disability and have already been rejected once. There is approx a 70% rejection on the first try, 50% o the second......so it goes. Again, hang in there. Wow, and i feel sory for myself when I have to give myself 20 U of N! Thanks for helping me get a perspective on my own diabetes!
  8. by   Cookielea RN
    So glad to find this thread today! Got official dx of NIDDM in Dec 08, but probably had symptoms for a few years. Also have pretty severe osteoarthritis/necrosis in both knees. I now have work as a "Director" in an AL facility with many ICF level residents. I have been working several hours over, every week and on my feet a lot of the time. This past winter I was also diagnosed with neuropathy in my legs and feet. I am working in a lot of pain. When I do get a day off, all I want to do is sleep. Anyone out there with diabetes who can tell me if what I am experiencing is "normal" with this disease? I also have bouts of profuse sweating, not related to low BS in most instances. I know I need a good physical and am waiting for insurance to kick in in about 2 weeks. I am starting to wonder if I am going to be able to work in this capacity anymore. I am 55 years old, and been in healthcare for 28 years.I would really appreciate any thoughts or suggestions.
  9. by   Silkiebyrd
    Definately wait til your insurance kicks in if you can since it is only 2 weeks. Of course, if you start feeling worse go on in. My long term disability wouldnt cover me because I was officially diagnosed with diabetes a week before my work insurance kicked in. When I developed retinopathy 51 weeks later, prudential said it was a pre=existing condition since it was directly related to the diabetes.

    I don't know what the sweats are if they are not related to low BS. Maybe something to do with endocrine system? Hormones? Just hang in there. I have bad moments and the people here are so supportive that it is what helps me with depression at times.

    I just went to MD on Thursday and was told that my "bezoar" has redeveloped and that it blocking the pyl. valve is causing me to have obstructive issues. They are talking about a gastric pacemaker for me as Reglan is not working and I am maxed (having a few distonic symptoms).

    Good luck to you and lots of hugs.....just know you arent alone.:heartbeat
  10. by   Cookielea RN
    Thanks so much for the support!:heartbeat I am struggling every day just to walk. I am actually more than a little scared that I am just disabled enough to not be able to continue nursing, but not disabled enough to get all the SS $$ back that I have paid into the system all these years. Recently I have begun to wish that Nursing as a profession had all the support systems that teachers, firefighters, and policeman have, as they age and develop work limitations! I do truly love working with the geriatric patients that we serve!
  11. by   Silkiebyrd
    I sometimes think that SS relies on us getting frustrated and saying the heck with it and not persisting in fighting them. I am in this fight for the long haul. I feel like you and many others here also. I have paid in the system since I was fifteen (which was many many years ago) and now the very jobs that we adore and live for are the VERY thing that has broken many of us in some regard. I do agree with you on the fact that nurses are lacking in care as we are getting older (not lacking in GIVING care..we lack in GETTING care). The further in this the more prounion I become...I am from a nonunion state and have never really understood what exactly they are about. Not trying to get politically into an argument. I just don't know what nurses as a group can effectively do to get the care that I think we need and deserve without some kind of organization. Keep on trying with SS, I hear that EVENTUALLY a lot of people do get approved.
  12. by   Cookielea RN
    I certainly wish you the best in your struggles. I also think that part of the problem is what I call the new "alphabet soup game" in Nursing. I think it is a great disservice to the profession that more emphasis is placed on the letters after the name, than the experience. I know that my nursing school was one that crammed 4 years of nursing skills into 2. Many of my classmates, including me, already had 4 to 6 years of college. The point I am trying to make is that I see a frightening pattern here where, even if nurses organize, they will have traded a historical trend of "at the hospital admins' mercy, for now being at the mercy of "graduate level" nurses who may or may not have much real world nursing experience. I am not trying to discredit the efforts of those who seek higher levels of education. I have just learned that much of nursing is learned in the field; just as is police work, fighting fires,etc. I, unfortunately, believe that we are still many miles from "taking care of our own". I would love to hear others views on this.
  13. by   mustlovepoodles
    for your post. I don't have diabetes but I am at high risk: >200-lbs., sedentary, high triglycerides,severe sleep apnea, ultra high stress life.:redlight: My elderly mother was diagnosed type 2 this year; she has pretty serious neuropathy in her feet. My younger sister was diagnosed type 1 when she was 37 and she has talked about some of the issues she has, like insulin resistance and fatigue.

    But no one has ever put it down for me in black & while like you did. Frankly, it sounds awful and I really don't ever want to go there. Your post gave me the kick in the seat I need to get up and take my health seriously before I pass the point of no return.:trout: So far my fastings are great and no symptoms of DM, but I feel like it's only a matter of time if I don't take drastic steps to renovate my life and my thinking.

    So today I found a Weight Watchers group and signed up. I could do it online, but I know myself--going in once a week will keep me on track when I have to be accountable. then I had a massage to address my stress. And then I visited a yoga class--it seems like something that might help reduce stress and improve my mental health as well as physical health. Plus it's no impact or low impact. Yay knees!

    Thank you once again.:bowingpur You may have saved my life.
  14. by   pooh54
    Best of luck to you!!!