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TO LIVE OR TO EXIST - THAT IS THE QUESTION?

Discussion in 'Diabetes Soapbox - Have Your Say' started by carophie04, Aug 15, 2013.

  1. carophie04

    carophie04 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    At the age of 73 I was diagnosed with Type 2 and am at present on Metformin 2 x a day. I packed up smoking some 8 years ago, have never been one for alcohol, and have always been careful when buying my food, although I do enjoy a sweet now and then or a cake or ice cream. Yesterday I went to my GP following HB1Ac test (which was actually down from 9.5) and she said my BS was 8.3, my cholesterol 6.2 and my blood pressure very high. My quandary is do I now, as she suggested, up the Metformin and lose control of my bowels, deny myself those few treats I have been having, go onto statins - which gave me severe cramp in the legs/feet every night and be a miserable old so and so or do I carry on as I have been doing and enjoy what time I have left on this mortal coil? I am sure others must come up against making this decision and would be interested for their views.
     
  2. carty

    carty Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Hi was in a similar position to you but I am only 70 :D
    I reduced my carbs and increased my good fat intake ,said no way to the statins .My HbA1c came down so did my cholesterol . Are you on the slow release metformin ? if not I would definately ask your GP for it , it meant a life beyond the toilet for me !
    CAROL
     
  3. izzzi

    izzzi Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Hi Carophie04 :)
    Well done for what you already achieved.

    I think your GP may be a little harsh this time on their recommendation .
    Did they give you anything for your high blood pressure.
    Maybe try to change your treats to contain a little less sugar.
    You have got control, and I think you know your body better than they think.

    Hope you get lots of replies from other members that have better knowledge than me.

    Good health,

    Roy. :)
     
  4. Thommothebear

    Thommothebear Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Ask for slow release metformin and give that a try, I am on SR and get no problems. Ditto with the statins, try a different one, I had lots of side effects with simvastatin and to add insult to onjury they didnt work very well eithereither, changed to atorvastatin and no side effects and good cholestrol control. That and reducing my carb intake I have a pretty good and enjoyable lifestyle
     
  5. Unbeliever

    Unbeliever · Well-Known Member

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    I don't think your GP can be too worried about ou if she only wanted t up your metformin. After all you are going in the right direction. and if she was really concerned she would have wanted o add another drug.

    Yes for goodness sake do get the Metformin Sr-it has transformed many lives and you will probably find ncresing he dosage on sr makes litttle difference . Just give it a week or wo to kick in.

    Same with the satin really. At present the GPs are being olfd to try several different stains if one doesn't work or causes side effecs.

    Many of us suffer leg cramps e for other reasons -might be worth invesigating.

    It is hard to have our lives changed by diagnosis when we are older but it doesn't mean we have to give up everything we like.
    maybe just change what we like!

    How about your die? if you reduce your starchy carbs a lile you might find it makes a massivve difference to your Bg lebvels and HBA1C and can have he occasional reat with a clear conscience.

    Good luck. I am sure we can all sympathise with you . At least if your numbers keep going down you won't need o ake ronger meds.
     
  6. carophie04

    carophie04 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Many thanks for all your replies. I am actually on the SR Metformin and it's just the inconvenience of the bowel probs that I find most difficult to cope with as it has also presented me with frequent UTI. I shall try and soldier on and take note of the different suggestions you have given me and I'll let you know what transpires when I go back to GP for a double appointment she told me to make for next week to discuss what they are going to about meds for all my problems. I take enough already so I hope it's not going to mean even more.
     
  7. Type2_2000

    Type2_2000 · Well-Known Member

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    Just on Statins, I just thought I'd share my experience. I took Simvastatin and experienced cramps at night and also disturbed sleep. It turns out that there are two types of statin: statins absorbed into fat ( lipophilic) and ones absorbed into water (hydrophilic). Simvaststin is a 'Fat' one and there are studies that suggest this type may cause the problems I've mentioned. I changed to a water statin (Pravastatin) and my symptoms have gone away.

    Also might be worth asking you can start on a low dose of statin. I'm fairly sure I read something about there being little increased benefit in taking 40mg of Statin over 20mg.



    Sent from the Diabetes Forum App
     
  8. Geocacher

    Geocacher · Well-Known Member

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    When you see your GP ask for a vitamin B12 test just to rule out a common deficiency found in many older people. Metformin disrupts the body's ability to absorb vitamin B12 and as we age that ability naturally declines. The combination of age and metfomin may mean that you are experiencing symptoms of a B12 deficiency many of which are easily mistaken for side effects of metformin and complications of diabetes.

    As for making a choice in your life of quality over quantity, I've already done so. I'm 46 and the life expectancy for a T2 in my family is less than 60. My T2 Father died suddenly at 56, his diabetes was under control and his blood pressure and cholesterol were within normal limits. So many other diabetic relatives have suffered a similar fate that it's come to be known in the family as the "fatal 50's". Those who make it to 60 still alive and healthy and not T2 are likely to have another 20 or 30 years at least, but few make it that far. I was found to be diabetic at the same age as my Father so I don't expect to have a long life. I am doing what I can to change that and just in case that doesn't work I'm also taking chances and making choices in my life to ensure that I don't miss out on experiences and adventures. I also chose not to have children so that I am not passing on what is clearly a genetic problem to another generation. That suits me and I would recommend the same to anyone -- be realistic about what T2 means in your life, be sensible about it and take care of yourself, and get on living with purpose.
     
  9. catherinecherub

    catherinecherub · Guest


    Hi,

    You do really need your blood pressure brought down. This will involve medication but there are so many disadvantages of high BP. It can affect your kidneys and eyes and you are more at risk of a heart attack or stroke..
    If you can't tolerate statins then there doesn't seem much point in taking them.
    As for the diabetes, you may like to read this article.
    http://newoldage.blogs.nytimes.com/2013 ... ealth&_r=0
     
  10. Unbeliever

    Unbeliever · Well-Known Member

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    I am very much inclined to agree wit the doctor in the link provided by catherinecherub. I have read quite a few asudies suggesing that too rigid control is counter-productive in the elderly.

    The proble here is to get GPs and other HCP's to agree. It is in fact easier , in many cases o ge heir agreement if diabetes is not the only condition present. Wwhere it is then the one-size -fits-all targes siuation comes into play and i have known elderly people harrassed and confused by {no doubt well -meaning] HCp's.
    Regarding the statins , in my experience , I managed o take simvastatin -40 mg- for four years wih no problems- hen suddenly I started to experience severe joint problems. I sopped he statins . The pain ceased. I stared again with a very low dose of pravastin
    The pains started again. The docor gave me ezemiibe. It didn't work for my cholesterol at all {not high ut just above target for a diabetic] wo oher drs insisted I shold start statins again I took atoravastin for a week. the pains came back. I soppped hem o see what happened I go uscle cramp.

    last week I had o atend the eye clinic. The opthalmologist asked if I was still taking a sain so I old him he story. He told me that statins -or ezemiibe of sains can'rt be olerated has a protective effect on diabetic eye diseases quite separately from their choleserol=lowering properies. Even if the ezemiibe had no effect on my cholesterol {as was he case] it has been shown o control or lessen maculopahy.He also said that joint pain is rarely a side effect but muscle pain is far ore common.

    I really believe that GPs must not be hidebound by the targets and should be allowed to treat the individual as an individual but they are often under great pressure o achieve these targets.

    I hope the OP manages to have a useful discusssion with his docor and hey can agree individual targets. for him.
    Adoping his way of managing diabees would save patients and HCP/s a great deal of grief and time.
     
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