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NHS Direct doctor says... NO testing when taking Metformin

Discussion in 'Diabetes Discussions' started by 999sugarbabe, May 7, 2015.

  1. Malcolm1

    Malcolm1 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    I was diagnosed 18yrs last Jan as T2 for the first 7 to 8yrs I was diet controlled then my sugars started to rise over a period of a few months and was put on Metformin and gliclazide after a few weeks I asked my then doctor about a test meter as I noticed the dosage kept going up and I felt no better, to be told the same I did not need to test as I was only T2 and on Metformin after some months of being told this I decided to buy my own meter and started testing once a day before bed only to find my readings to be in the mid to high 20s on a daily basis and quite often beyond my meters upper limit of 33.3 despite my bi-monthly blood tests taken at the doctors showing Hba1c as being normal to low at this point my GP retired and for a period of about 3yrs we had a succession of temporary doctors join and leave the surgery who to be honest just couldn’t care less about the patents as they had no intention of stopping on, I was finally attached to another doctor on a permanent basis and at that point after yet again I needed more than just tablets and being told to persevere I printed out my meter readings from the computer and took them in and refused to leave until she did something about it that and the fact that the practice nurse had just found that the feeling in my feet had started to deteriorate all I got was “oh I see what you mean” I was then sent to the diabetic center at the hospital for the first time in 15yrs I shortly moved house and doctors after that but in the 16yrs of being diagnosed while at that surgery I never once saw a diabetic nurse or dietician was never given a blood meter though they did supply the test strips and lancets for my own meter after much argument was not sent for eye scans until after I’d been diagnosed for about 12yrs and finally sent to the diabetic center after almost 8yrs of uncontrolled blood sugar continually in the high teens and low twenties, my new doctors are the complete opposite in the 2 and 1/2yrs I’ve been with them I see a diabetic nurse every 6 to 8 weeks who also takes blood each time, a podiatrist every 12 weeks and the diabetic GP every 12 to 14 weeks I’ve been given 2 new meters since joining the surgery
     
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  2. NWCub76

    NWCub76 Type 2 · Member

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    I'm sorry to hear you received such poor care, Malcolm. But I'm glad you now have the right team on your case and are getting the care you need.

    All the best wishes for your health and happiness.
     
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  3. Barbja

    Barbja Type 2 · Member

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    I would like to add my comments to this discussion.

    I take 2 x 500 meteor in and 1 x2 mg glimepiride in the morning, together with 2 x 599 meteor in., having dropped from 2 x 859 met forming twice a day, in 2014).

    When I was first diagnosed with T2 I tested my blood, every day between breakfast and lunch - it helped me know why I felt as I did, sometimes. My job could be hectic/ stressful and I found this was when I was likely to feel unwell, the worst was a level of 3.2 - chocolate in desk!

    I was told some years ago that I no longer needed to test - by my g.p. Yet when I go to Moorfields they ask how my control is - I have to say 'it was ok at my last check up'.

    I feel I should ask again for test strips but is it worth it?

    I have a boyfriend/blood test on Monday so should I ask again?
     
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  4. NWCub76

    NWCub76 Type 2 · Member

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    Personally, I would ask for test strips again. There's no harm in asking, but be prepared for disappointment as it seems more and more GPs are now jumping on the T2 Metformin No Self-Test wagon! However, seeing as you're also on glimepiride, I'd insist on having those test strips, as glimepiride can cause hypoglycaemia!

    How often are you having your HBa1C checked? It shouldn't just be once each year, that's proven to not be good enough in monitoring patients' progress as your diabetes can change drastically in 12 months! It should be at least twice each year. My GP tests my HBa1C every 3 to 6 months, depending on my self-test results.
     
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  5. Fi2000

    Fi2000 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    I got prescribed 1mg glimepiride last Friday.
    My Diabetes Nurse gave me a meter.
    Got told to test my blood when I get up an when I go to bed, and before I drive. And if I feel unwell
    Got a prescription for 50 test strips a month, but strangley 200 lancets a month.

    So tell your DN that as you need to test before driving you need a meter and a prescription for test strips
     
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  6. Barbja

    Barbja Type 2 · Member

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    I do get an annual check up in December, the full works followed by a chat with a diabetic nurse, my June check up is just a blood test for HBa1C and my blood pressure.

    When I was on my original dose my HB1aC had gone down to 5.9, so it was decided to lower my metformin to 2 x 500 from 2 x 850. The result was a raised test result after three months and then no test until December 2014, result - it was up a bit more.

    I have a hectic social calendar from September to December, birthdays, wedding anniversary - all of which could, if I allowed them to, have affected my HB1aC in the past, but it didn't.

    My lifestyle changed, I retired in 2012 but I do more now!

    Thanks for the advice, I will make that appointment and see what comes back.
     
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  7. Barbja

    Barbja Type 2 · Member

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    Hi, unfortunately, I don't drive anymore, my sight is not good enough to allow me to.

    I will, however, still discuss this with the surgery.
     
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  8. Polarice

    Polarice · Member

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    I was diagnosed with T2 around 18 months ago. I've been talking 500mg of Metformin daily ever since.
    But at no time has it been suggested I check my levels.
    Reading the comments in this thread, I'm wondering if I should be.
    Any comments or recommendations from others with a longer experience of this matter would be very welcome.
    Thanks !

    Kevin
     
  9. Polarice

    Polarice · Member

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    At my last check with the diabetic nurse, she warned me off eating porridge, yet here you say it's good for you, I'm confused ?

    I have T2 and I'm taking 500mg of Metformin daily.

    Should I try porridge and if so, which brand is good for T2 sufferers ?

    Is there anything you can add to off-set the otherwise bland taste ?

    Thanks,

    Kevin
     
  10. Daphne917

    Daphne917 Type 2 (in remission!) · Well-Known Member

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    Some people can eat porridge - the way to see if you can eat it is by testing just before you eat it and then 1, 2 and 3 hours after to see how your BS rises.
     
  11. Scouser58

    Scouser58 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Hello to everybody, the testing for T2 is still rumbling on and now the big boys are jumping up saying no testing if on Metformin???
    I have been on Metformin since I was diagnosed and have been testing also. I feel that T2 should be testing each day to keep their eye on the development of their condition, and be able to act accordingly if things are getting problematic.

    Why are they saying these things when if they read the posts on this site, they would read the details of each diabetics progress and actions they have to go through to keep their condition in check. Many a good turn around and stabilizing of things is down to testing and maintaining a record. Each time I went to see the diabetic doctor at the hospital, he asked for my readings to see how I was dealing with the condition, so why are the 'Penny Pinchers' are looking at 'saving money'??? The how would they explain the rising costs of more serious treatments for diabetic complications that start to occur? Then they would come out with the blame the patient drum beat, when all along it would have been cheaper to allow testing for T2's.

    The ones who say these things are money misers and not doctors, so who are they to say no testing, I believe that testing is important to T2's and the levels of medications should not be the main reason to stop them. Challenge the stopping of testing for T2 and keep asking your own doctor for the strips and lancets to continue doing so. This has been rumbled on for many months and it will do so for longer, No Stopping Of Testing For T2 Diabetics, ttfn from Karen.
     
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  12. kpol

    kpol Type 2 · Newbie

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    Good Morning All

    I take insulin, and test 3 -4 times a day, mainly to keep everything under control, but also to keep DVLA happy.

    My mother is on Metformin , and a few years ago, her local GP practice manager took her testing strips off her repeat list.

    I was fuming !

    I emailed her Practice Manager, her GP and her local NHS Trust. Explaining that testing was a tool she could use to control her levels. And in the long run, it costs the local NHS trust less money, as she was less likely to end up in A&E if she had better control, and did not have a hypo etc and fall over and break her hip etc.

    I posted my spare meter and 200 testing strips down to my Mum to enable her to test.

    I must say the local NHS Trust agreed with me , and instructed her local practice manager, to put her testing strips and a meter back on her repeat list.

    I got a very nice email back from the practice manager explaining that she was following NHS guide lines, but as the local NHS trust had instructed them , under medical advise, for my mother to test, that they would continue to supply my mother with her strips and testing meters.

    One small blip, a new practice nurse joined the practice , and tried to remove the testing strips from my Mother again, a quick chat with the practice manager put her right.

    DVLA advise, is that you must test within 2 hours of starting to drive.I know this applies to those taking Insulin, but insurance companies may also ask for testing levels, if you are in a RTA, aswell as the Police, even if you are just on Metformin !
     
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  13. gillyhill

    gillyhill Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    I agree with bewildered. It is a cost issue. I saw my doctor this morning, armed with copy of Nice guidelines, and asked. I told her I'd spoken to a diabetic specialist at an event I went to and he said I should have them. Especially as I'm losing weight. Therefore a lifestyle change as in guidelines. After the 'spiel' of no testing she gave me prescription for 50 and I got testing kit from nurse. Will supplement the strips I buy. So a small victory :)
     
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  14. justCarol

    justCarol Type 2 · Newbie

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    I have found that neither my current doctor or the doctor I was previously registered with are not trained diabetes specialists, I now attend a Diabetes Clinic. My doctors have always been prepared and willing to prescribe test equipment, even providing a new monitor. What the NHS needs to do is to stop doctors prescribing for over the counter tablets and vitamins etc that cost the NHS far too much, I am also against doctors prescribing aspiring - these are extremely cheap to buy over the counter and anyone on a low income or on a pension can afford them at approximately £1.05 for 100 tablets - that's what I do. So these are just a couple of ways the NHS could save - probably - a lot of money.
     
  15. 999sugarbabe

    999sugarbabe · Guest

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    Sounds like you've now got a good surgery. There are a few about, but I think they are in the minority.
    At the end of the day it is entirely down to economics. Short term it saves the G.P's a lot of money NOT prescribing test strips. Long term, it costs US toes,feet, eyesight etc.
    They are gambling with OUR health just to save a few quid. This is the price we are all paying now that health care is a BUSINESS, not a service. Thank Margaret Thatcher (the witch is dead, horray!) for the gradual undercover privatisation.

    If you don't believe me check out the NHS Support Federation at: http://www.nhscampaign.org/
     
  16. graj0

    graj0 · Guest

    Where does it say that, it implies that all diabetics should be taking their BG, by law, if they're driving. Metformin shouldn't cause a hypo but I've had one after doing some strenuous gardening, lawn mowing, digging.
     
  17. Scouser58

    Scouser58 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Hello to all, what is right and what is wrong, nobody really knows. This whole situation leaves us diabetics with the problem, and now that the DVLA is looking over the whole diabetic driving situation. Maybe we should get the DVLA to sit the reasons for requiring the testing and then they can take on the money misers at the NHS, should be a good battle to watch.
    What about writing to the papers regarding the situation, from a diabetic's point of view and the cross rules from NHS and DVLA requirements,,,,, Ding ding round 1, ttfn from Karen.
     
  18. Violetluis

    Violetluis Type 2 · Member

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    My experience is similar to yours regarding my high sugar levels when fasting.
    I am also very puzzled by it. The explanation given by next contributor seems logical and makes sense, even so, for a diabetic, it is all very confusing.
    NO, I have never been told not to test my sugar when taking Metformin. I have been taken off Metformin because in my case, it is causing me other health problems. Let's see how we all get on. Good luck to all
     
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  19. Scouser58

    Scouser58 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Hello confusion will continue until there is something to make/force them to see it is vital to well being, ttfn from Karen
     
  20. gillyhill

    gillyhill Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    This happened to me last month while clearing/digging the garden. I saw Dr, diabetes Dr too, Wednesday. I asked for strips and was refused. Quoted diabetes specialist consultant answer to my question about this. Then said it was my right to have the as 'changing' lifestyle. I was going to pull out my copy of Nice guidelines but she gave me some. Victor? :)
     
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