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

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

  1. MosheBenYehuda

    MosheBenYehuda Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Unfortunately I was told the same...
    I took a leap of faith, and dished out a monitor, purchase my lancets and strips, and learn DIY. If it would be after the doc, my averages would be still over 10 as I found them when I bought my monitor...
    I learned on my own the what and what not, and in 2 weeks I got below 6:)
     
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  2. Scouser58

    Scouser58 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Hello gillyhill and all other confused diabetics, what is the "magic" bit about metformin? I understand that it helps the pancreas process the food after a meal, and give the body good help! but how do you know if things are going along in the right direction?

    Are we supposed to believe that ignorance is "bliss", i.e. what you don't know wont stress you out? What are you supposed to do when that funny feeling arrives and you start to feel shaky and wobbly? You have eaten too much sugar-free jelly!? Or what about if you start feeling no with it and you are told your breath smells like pear drops? do you think you ate too many? then you start to get sleepy,lethargic, and what ever else happens to hit you? Do you need to re-balance your insulin?, have something to eat?,or get medical help quickly?. The readings on the meters tell you what is going on by the result that is displayed on the screen, below 5-ish then are you having a hypo, or over 10.15.20 are you going/gone into hyper- Or are you just to carry on and ignore the feelings and do nothing.

    Then there will be reports in the papers about diabetics, going into hospitals for major help, because there was no way to check things that are different, and very dangerous to health. Money Misers are dangerous to health, ttfn from Karen.
     
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  3. Scandichic

    Scandichic Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Join the merry club of encountering doctors who are fuckwits. Carry on testing and staying in control. On the main website there is an article re a 17% reduction for people who maintain control with bs. As you quite rightly state - how do I know what my levels are if I don't test! Mine gave in and I got the free strips after 3 months of proving that I use them to monitor and control my bs. Have just moved and am about to go through same process with new doc.
    Hope your bs is down now. Were you ill? That sometimes has an effect too? Hope you're feeling better! Hugsx
     
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  4. Scouser58

    Scouser58 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Hello to all confused diabetics, Now the Metformin, you do not need to test. So I thought what is so special about Metformin that does not need checking, so got the bumf sheet from inside the box and read through it.

    So in section 2 Before you take Metformin Tablets, I got to the section about Taking other Medicines, In the paragraph that starts, Tell your doctor if you take any of the following medicines and Metformin Tablets at the same time.

    " You may need more frequent blood glucose tests or your doctor may adjust the dosage of Metformin Tablets"

    Now lets look at the DVLA getting on the case, Metformin Tablets on their own does not affect your ability to drive or use machines. But then it goes on, if you take metformin with other treatments for diabetes, that can cause hypoglycaemia (insulin, sulphonylureas, glinides), symptoms of hypoglycaemia, weakness, dizziness, etc. then do not drive or operate machinery.
    So if the DVLA are checking up, do they want to know about your testing results, and how many times you hypo, while you are driving. And if no control,as you cannot test, will you lose your driving licence??

    So have the money misers looked and thought of these questions??? well ttfn from Karen.
     
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  5. kcbones

    kcbones Type 2 · Member

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    A year ago I was told by my doctor that I should not be testing as I was on Tablets and not insulin. This only came up because I asked for a prescription for the test strips. He did not really explain why I should not be testing and I was left with the impression that this was all to do with cost and nothing to do with health.
    After thinking over my discussion with the doctor I decided I would prefer to know what my bloods were and bought test strips over the internet. They are only around £20 for 50 strips so it is not that expensive and the peace of mind it gives is worth it.
     
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  6. MosheBenYehuda

    MosheBenYehuda Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    SMALLER VICTORY:)

    Hi Everyone!
    Had my meds review today, and after I showed my diabetes clinician the accurately kept BG results for the past two weeks, and explained how self-monitoring helped in bringing my averages down around 2 units, and also in figuring out what foods have a negative impact on my levels, I was given a new kit and repeat prescription for strips and lancets. I was given advice to test only if I feel unwell; I will keep testing morning fasting, and 2 hours after supper, which would hopefully give a realistic average for the day.
    So it was worth trying again, and supporting request with results.
    Yay;-)
     
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  7. Scouser58

    Scouser58 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Hello MosheBenYehuda, your results are very good, and your victory was tremendous for the right thing to be done for valued well being.
    Congratulations to you, ttfn from Karen.
     
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  8. MosheBenYehuda

    MosheBenYehuda Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Thank you so much for your encouragement! I'm fairly new to DM, and keep learning. Thanks again:-D
    Moshe
     
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  9. Scouser58

    Scouser58 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Hello, thank you for your comment, karen
     
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  10. louch1

    louch1 · Well-Known Member

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    It still surprises me how different the info is around diabetes and how to monitor it. I was diagnosed type 2 oct last year . At first I tried controlling it with diet that failed and then I progressed onto mediformin where I was encouraged to blood test to see how the meds affected me and what was causing me to spike so much. How can diabetics control there diet if they don't know what is there blood levels. It even makes me laugh when medical professionals tell me mediformin doesn't have an affect on your stomach. Wow have they tried the stuff. I know some people don't but only after speaking with family members they remind you about the affects . I really wish professionals who deal with diabetics have an understanding wether it's family or they have it themselves so they inturn can fully understand the affects it has on the patient or family. I test my blood three times a day and it's been such a god send , I think it's about choice and what suits the individual .
     
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  11. Lamont D

    Lamont D Reactive hypoglycemia · Master

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    Metformin is a long term effective drug. It has shown over time to have an effect on insulin production. Yes a lot of diabetics struggle with it, but it won't drastically reduce blood glucose levels.
    Testing is so important if you want to get control.
    Control is the key to unlock your health.
     
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  12. Scouser58

    Scouser58 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Hello nosher8355 and all other diabetics. the test/not test still keeps going and so it will without unilateral action by the medical bods. I agree if they are not a specialist in endocrinology they won't know very much, and as pointed out if they have no experience in the metformin and it's effects then they know nothing. The true experts are the diabetics themselves and they learn more when they network between themselves and read all information and discuss it, and post on this knowledgeable site.

    Nothing stays the same,and that goes for everybody's health and bs balance, and don't we all know this. So all learned friends keep up the pressure to test, and knowledge sharing, as we all learn so much, we have the right to learn and get better control in our lives, so ttfn from KAren.
     
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  13. ColB

    ColB · Newbie

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  14. ColB

    ColB · Newbie

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    Hello Sugarbabe, There are a lot of people with a lot of opinions and they are all different! even the the doctors and diabetic nurses differ in their opinions. I'm not going to add to that by giving you yet another one ...instead, I will just tell you my tale and you can draw from it what will, or not :)
    I was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes in 2009 and prescribed Metformin, twice a day directly after meals. I also attended a group Diabetic Education Session given by local diabetic nurses to help me understand what diabetes was and how to help myself control it. These being the main points: 1) how much sugar there was in different foods (which I did find a big eye opener...check out the potato !!! OMG) 2) The dramatic effect of exercise in controlling blood sugar levels 3) Finding a new diet that works for you.
    At the start, I tested 5 times a day! first thing / after breakfast / after lunch / after dinner and last thing before bed. I put all the results into my own spreadsheet for a month...the results were all over the place, ranging from 5 to 12 but with no discernable pattern what so ever... confused.com!!! so I took these results to my GP and Diabetic Nurse, both of whom told me not to bother with testing as it was only the six monthly blood tests that showed how well I was controlling my sugar levels. So I stopped testing completely! Being divorced and living on my own, I began taking a really interest in cooking and selecting a healthy diet, not eating big meals, 'trying not to snack too much' (this for me is the hardest thing! lol), taking lots of exercise (even if its just walking every day) and not too much alcohol...I like a glass or two of Malbec :) but restrict myself to 2 glasses and at weekends only.

    When I returned to the doctor six months later, after all the usual blood tests I was told my control was excellent and it was almost as if I didn't have diabetes, as you can imagine, I was delighted. I was told to just keep doing my new health regime. A year passed and on returning to my doctor the results were just the same, so I asked if I could reduce my Metformin to see if that changed anything, the doctor agreed and to this day I still only take one 750mg tablet after my main meal every day.

    I am 69 and expect to feel some aches and pains, poor sleeping and general tiredness, but in the main I feel in control of my diabetes. My blood pressure is normal, my BMI is good and I feel good for my age. personally I believe my control is a balance between a healthy diet, excercise, and the one Metformin per day. I still use my meter but for one reason only, If I have a bad day, as we all do from time to time, I want to know 'is it my blood sugar levels' or am I poorly for some other reason, that's the only time I use my meter now. "I listen to my body now. I am aware of the changes I feel from what and how much I eat" I don't try to completely cut out sugar completely, or some of the other bad things that I like...what I have done is to reduce them to a minimum so that I can still enjoy the taste but without eating too much...a perfect example is chocolate, I still enjoy 2/3 square now and then as a treat, but never eat say half a bar at a sitting as I used to :)

    To finish up... for me, controlling my Diabetes is about the balance between Exercise - What I eat and How much I eat.
    I look upon discovering that I have Diabetes as a blessing... because of the changes I have made to my life I now feel better than I ever did :) I hope something in my experience helps you and anyone else who has recently learned that they have type 2 Diabetes. Change is within YOU

    ColB
     
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  15. graj0

    graj0 · Guest

    That was very interesting because I thought it only improved insulin sensitivity.

    However, in an article entitled: "Metformin restores insulin secretion altered by chronic exposure to free fatty acids or high glucose: a direct metformin effect on pancreatic beta-cells".
    Written by: Patanè G1, Piro S, Rabuazzo AM, Anello M, Vigneri R, Purrello F.

    Their conclusion is as follows:

    In conclusion, our data show that metformin is able to restore the intracellular abnormalities of glucose and FFA metabolism and to restore a normal secretory pattern in rat pancreatic islets whose secretory function has been impaired by chronic exposure to elevated FFA or glucose levels. These data raise the possibility that, in diabetic patients, metformin (in addition to its peripheral effects) may have a direct beneficial effect on the beta-cell secretory function.
     
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  16. MosheBenYehuda

    MosheBenYehuda Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Thank you so much for sharing, it is truly educational and very helpful:)
     
  17. Jacquelineann

    Jacquelineann Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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  18. Jacquelineann

    Jacquelineann Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    I'm on Metformin and insulin, but I have never been told not to test. Quite the opposite
     
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  19. Scouser58

    Scouser58 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Hello to all, still the contradictions continue, and we the diabetics have to make the best sense out of it.

    Money misers are the bane of our lives, they watch the pennies, and then make our lives a misery, ttfn from Karen.
     
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  20. Jacquelineann

    Jacquelineann Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    In fact, if I didn't test, as I am sometimes totally unaware of being hypo - how would I know? I have had readings of under 2 and not been aware
     
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