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DESMOND

Discussion in 'Diabetes Soapbox - Have Your Say' started by debs63, May 19, 2009.

  1. debs63

    debs63 · Newbie

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    Hi everyone
    Was diagnosed type 2 in Febuary and went to the DESMOND course yesterday, just thought I would let you all know what it was like and let off steam at the same time. I know lots of people say its a really good thing to get the opportunity to go but I wouldnt say its as great as its cracked up to be, most of what they teach you I had already learnt from this sight.Two ladies running it, a diabetic nurse and a dietician. When you get the appointment they tell you that you can take someone with you, I didnt as no one wanted to come with me (Billy no mates!), no everyone was working and I think they were put off by the fact its an all day thing.
    So there are 8 diabetics and and 6 friends/family, they start by asking what symptoms you had, what led to diagnosis, how you felt etc, well you always get 1 dont you that has to be center of attention and monopolise the procedings and such a drama queen, do you know that she felt that bad on being diagnosed she couldnt sit and watch Eastenders and she is on the point of tears as she is sharing this little gem, her mate was just as bad, we had to take a packed lunch with us and the mate was sitting there ramming sausage rolls, crisps and bakewell tarts down her neck, nothing like a bit of support is there :evil:. So next they ask who is on medication and who is on diet alone, only myself and 1 other person are on metformin and we are made to feel like naughty school children because we havent tried to control it without meds but I wasnt given the choice my gp put me straight on metformin, they then start telling us about diet and I made the mistake of mentioning that I was thinking of starting a low carb diet, well the dietician one looked like she was going to have a fit and barked at me that low carb dieting was very unhealthy and would seriosly increase my risks of heart problems and it all kind of sunk even further down hill for me after that :cry: . We then had the interactive bit, lots of different plastic food which had to be sorted into catagories, highest fat, highest sugar, healthiest etc, I had not been looking forward to this bit, I am not very good with that kind of thing :oops:, I need not have worried there was no chance of me getting anywhere near the food Drama Queen and mate are up out of their seats like the shot out of a gun and completely took over the table blocking anyone else from getting in, we had about 6 more of these activities and it was the same every time in the end I didnt bother to even get up but I was fuming :x the mate is not even diabetic but she was stopping people who are from learning, so I dont know about DESMOND being a good thing but I think my blood pressure must have gone through the roof I was seriously contemplating pricking Drama Queen and her mate to death with my lancet devise :twisted: ,which I shouldnt have, because testing is frowned upon by DESMOND as it will make you obsesive and scare you to death, naturally I was the only one there that was testing so I had by this point become the rebel of the group, medication, low carbs AND testing what a trully wicked person I am :twisted: Anyway rant over feel better now :) , but to be honest I cant really say that DESMOND is greatly enlightening anyone who has been on this sight will already know most of it and probably more besides.
    Deb
     
  2. Trinkwasser

    Trinkwasser · Well-Known Member

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    Sad and disappointing - but hardly surprising, I've read similar stories elsewhere, people being talked down to as if they were naughty nine year olds and given outdated if not dangerous information. And biscuits.

    Some of the DAFNE courses have better reports, the quality seems variable but there are more positive reviews of the content and attitude.

    You'd be better off spending the time here, or elsewhere on the internet.
     
  3. hanadr

    hanadr · Expert

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    Not a lot of help then? :lol:
     
  4. Trinkwasser

    Trinkwasser · Well-Known Member

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  5. the_anticarb

    the_anticarb · Well-Known Member

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    Hi Debs that sounds like an awful experience, sorry you had to waste your time, perhaps you could have left an upturned lancet on drama queen's mate's chair! :lol:
     
  6. POO`s 2

    POO`s 2 · Member

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    Hi Deb,
    I have just logged on and read your account of your experience at the DESMOND day clinic. I have been trying to find out information on what to expect as I have a forthcoming appointment in September. Like you I have probably found out more information by coming on to this site and am begining to feel that I am in for a wasted day. Still, I had better attend as it is on the advice from my GP and since I shall probably be in need of his help in the future I had better keep `on side`. I shall be taking along a friend with me who has been T2 for many years so it will be interesting to see what she makes of it. I will keep you posted of my experience. Meanwhile good luck in keeping up the fight. Poo`s 2 :wink:
     
  7. Katharine

    Katharine · Well-Known Member

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    It wasn't a wasted visit. I had a really good laugh!


    DESMOND has proven of no benefit at all in improving the glycaemic control of diabetics but usually participants feel happier being on it. (Presumably because they THINK they have been told how to manage it correctly!)
     
  8. deadwood2

    deadwood2 · Well-Known Member

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    Well, Debs, I was going to keep this little gem until I could post a two part thriller, but in the light of your experience - you are not alone...

    Desmond? Well, I'm a sceptic, but I went armed with my plastic banana and the answers to lots of questions to prove that I am depressed. What did we learn? Lots, including:

    *We can't discuss GI or any other form of diet - you need to get a referral to a dietician for that (followed by a good hour spent naming foods and classifying them as "sugary" and fast acting or "starchy" and slow acting, and deciding whether they may fit into a "balanced" diet)...

    *We only give information and that has to be understandable to everybody. (She said this whilst scowling at me and glancing meaningfully at the lovely lad staring vacantly into the middle distance. Fortunately she was spared having to get his attention as his carer lovingly poked him in the ribs before unobtrusively asking for about the tenth time "is is to do with his waterworks?". It eventually turned out that she had once had a T1 boyfriend who had been afflicted in this manner... God help us all.)

    *Test strips are expensive, self monitoring is unnecessary, produces random and unpredictable results that don't change or prove anything, confuse most people and worry the rest or induce neurosis.

    *If we disagree with that, we are perfectly at liberty to go out and buy our own equipment!

    *HbA1C is the only measure that counts. It's like a football league - if you're consistently good, you're at the top of the league. [Er, yes, but.. Ed.] (When some fool pointed out that a football league was generally about aggregates rather than averages, HCP confessed she knew nothing about football...) Exit several wills to live, stage left.

    *"Opportunistic testing is good". There is nothing ironic or contradictory in dragging people off the streets and frightening them to death by telling them they've got a chronic illness and then refusing to give them the means to measure and control it in case it worries them! And anyone who suggests otherwise is free to leave if they wish!!!

    *Put under the slightest pressure, the presenters are likely to break out the kettle and brew up for everyone whilst they regroup. This, at least, will come in handy next week. :lol: If only I could find out where the chocoholic one keeps the bourbons, we'd all be quids in!

    I can't wait :? I wonder if they have a feedback form?
     
  9. dipsticky

    dipsticky · Well-Known Member

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    deadwood. You're a card. :lol: :lol: :lol:

    D.
     
  10. Edwardia

    Edwardia · Well-Known Member

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    When I received a letter telling me to turn up for a DESMOND day,and that my GP would be informed if I didn't,I ranted on their answering machine. :oops: :lol:
     
  11. graham64

    graham64 · Well-Known Member

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    Wonder if the A1c levels are down to the dietary advice :?


    http://www.bmj.com/cgi/content/abstract/336/7642/491

    Graham
     
  12. Franky69uk

    Franky69uk · Active Member

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    Wow.. all these anti desmond rants have scared me to death.. was fully prepared to go and fight my corner on self management with testing being an essential part of it. Have asked the diabetic nurse in my Health Centre if there is a need to test. Same old stock answer "NO". Went out and bought my own meter and test strips (spent over £50 so far and only been doing it for three weeks!). What have I learned? That testing is an important part of self managment and no self opionated doctor or nurse will convince me otherwise.
    Since I started testing I have discovered that some foods especially at breakfast time and which I thought were healthy (i.e breakfast weetabix and half banana) just played havoc with sugar levels sending them into double figures. Without testing I would have carried on thinking that i was eating a healthy breakfast unaware of the effects it was having.
    Have been very naughty too and been on a low carb diet with disasterous effects..lol.. I've lost over a stone, can fit into my clothes much better and generally feel a lot healthier. With testing I think I can manage to at least boot some of the metaformin (I take 4 a day) into touch and work on diet alone. My outlook to be honest has totally changed with diet and testing andI'll continue with it no matter what. My next attack is on statins . I take 40m in the evening. My last cholesterol reading was 3.9 . My last HBA1c reading was 7.3 which I was told was too high and the nurse wanted to add another metaformin in addition to the four I was already taking (500mg each).
    By the way I'm on a Desmond course tomorrow morning-- also threatened with my GP being notified if I dont turn up. Listening to other people's experiences sounds like a waste of time but we'll see.
     
  13. noblehead

    noblehead Type 1 · Guru
    Retired Moderator

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    Debs,

    It sounds like you have been to hell and back there! :shock:

    It sounds like it is far removed from the teachings of the DAFNE course for type 1's.

    Nigel
     
  14. IanD

    IanD Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    The experts & educators can only teach what they have been taught.

    We have the actual experience, & can be dismissed absolutely - "it may work for you, but we cannot advise others based on one person's experience."

    BUT you can get through. The dietitian who gave me the starchy carb advice 10 years ago listen to me, & invited me onto the X-PERT course as one with valuable experience. She took my low carb diet plate & recipes to distribute. I did not need to shout or push, or know-it-all.

    When she said Hounslow NHS don't recommend testing as they spend more on test strips than medication, I simply suggested that using test strips could well be saving money on medication & medical treatment. How could she argue?

    My experience - crippling neuropathy to full activity together with improvement in numbers - is evidence they can believe.
     
  15. lovinglife

    lovinglife Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    My experience of the DESMOND course:

    If you are very very new and do not know anything at all about your diabetes it can be a valuable starting point course, I say this because on the course I was on out of the 10 people there -

    I was the youngest at 46 everyone else (apart from one person I will go back to) were in their 60’s and not on the net or had done any of their own research

    Not one of them knew anything about a meter and that you could self-test (most have never heard of it)

    Only 2 of us actually knew our Ac1 – the others had no idea that this existed or what it meant :shock:

    At lunch we got out our “supplies” most had packed lunches of 2 white teacakes a sausage roll and a bag of crisps, one guy said he had a lovely lunch in the canteen of potato soup and a crusty roll – oh and 1 guy when I went out for a walk after eating my burgen bread butties was sitting in his car eating what looked like fish & chips :shock: :roll:

    None of this is their fault – they were just told by their GP’s to watch their diets for sat fats and a bit of portion control – all of them wanted to be doing the right thing but just had no idea what that was.

    I was different that I had learnt a lot from here and all over the internet and was more clued up than them, I did give them some pointers but to be honest I felt I would have totally confused them even more if I had tried to pass on all that I had picked up!

    I didn’t learn much more than I already ready knew on the course but the two course leaders were very good and talked in depth about diet and what we should be eating and tried to say "without saying" that keeping your carb intake down and eating low GI would help a lot - they drew all over the healthy plate and all the people there got the idea that carbs need to be controlled not just sugars and cut out the refined carbs

    They also said that I shouldn’t be paying for my strips if that was the way I was dealing with my diabetes I should be given the tools to do so – reading the rest of the posts I think the course leaders on my course were a bit more enlightened than others (DN nurse and a dietitian)


    Now the guy I come back to – he arrived carrying a litre bottle of full fat coke :shock: because he gets thirsty and proceeded to tell us that he had eaten a full jelly and fresh cream the night before because he had seen a leaflet in his GP surgery that he could eat jelly – he just hadn’t realised they meant sugar free!! :shock: :roll: – he was morbidly obese and his BP was off the scale and he was only 42 – I felt he would be a lost cause

    But the fish & chip guy was the one that shocked me most of all. He knew loads and had a great deal of knowledge he had gleaned from all over – just like us – he was the first to give the answers and talked about low carbing at length – white food is bad etc– I did learn some things from him – but was extremely puzzled why he wasn’t putting it into to practice

    Funnily enough apart from this guy and the fish & chip guy I was the only overweight one there (Then my weight loss was standing at 3st) – the rest were slim with some bordering on skinny so the myth that “you get T2 because your fat” was definitely proven wrong here

    I think DESMOND has its place for some and if it helped one of those people be more proactive then that’s good

    ooops sorry its a long post and thanks for reading to the end :lol:
     
  16. Jim H

    Jim H · Active Member

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    I went on this Desmond course in Feb/march last your and found it was excellent and very informative, much better then a book or stuff on the net. It was held at my local surgery, so only a 10 min walk away. :)

    I learned a lot, I think most people on the course were on Metformin and were diagnosed in the last 6 months or so. I was surprised to learn how many sugar cubes there was in Lucuzade (I thought Coke as bad) an even now comment to people if I see them drinking it. Also how much exercise you have to do after eating only 2 chocolate digestives!

    P.S. Sorry for reviving this thread, I'm a newbie and have just found this section.
     
  17. Sue Morton

    Sue Morton · Well-Known Member

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    Gosh, a friend of mine told me to make sure you go on a course to desmonds but boy am i glad that I didn't ask the nurse. I believe what is happening now with the Type 2 is that the medical people are relying on drugs to correct the BS level of T2's. I test when I have something different to eat to see how it effects my BS you must test to see how you react to various different foods if you don't you wont know. I had spag Bol the other night and thought my BS would go very high but it was 7.0 but pork chop potatoes and carrots 8.6 (had more potatoes then norm as they were knew ones and so nice).

    It amazes me to see some of the BS levels that are told to be high - I was told mine should be between 6 - 7 but people with lower are told they are high. Could it be my age as I am 61 and that my levels are allowable higher. I am on 2x500mg metformin and as my BS estimate was 9.8 the DN wanted to increase it to 3 a day but I said as I am knew and trying to control it more with food I would rather not (I was diagnosed in March 2010) as I am just getting to know things etc. I had lost a futher 5 1/2 lbs so she knew I was trying and agreed and also suggested that I speak with the doc regarding tabs - that it was the "PCT's" that stop us from having the tabs.

    Good luck to everyone
    :D Sue M
     
  18. Synonym

    Synonym · Well-Known Member

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    Hi Sue :)

    It is a pity that more people are not encouraged to work at controlling their condition instead of being started off on medication. Often the reason given is that it is to get a speedy handle on the condition and in some cases this may be so. From observations amongst friends who have diabetes the reality is that it seems to be disabling people from working on it themselves as most of them seem to think that they can't or will be in trouble if they do.

    The numbers of your age do not relate to the numbers of your BG and it is not a reason for higher numbers unless your life expectancy is not great; however I don’t think 61 is such an advanced age! :shock: :roll: I sometimes wonder if HCPs have given up when they say such things.

    Your care should certainly not be a question of luck but rather working to find what foods do to your levels and which you should cut down or out and which are safe for you to eat.

    You seem to be on the right path so keep on working at it! 8)
     
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