Monthly Archives: March 2009

Mozzwatch

Mozz measured 14.9 this morning.  That’s at the top end of the ideal scale. We didn’t give him any insulin.

This evening he measured 16.2 so it was time for some insulin. We gave him 2 units.

It has been 4 days since he needed his last shot.  That’s a really long time.

We were discussing how low we thought the insulin shot would bring him down to. Richard thought it might bring him down as low as 10. I thought it might bring him down as low as 8, based on last time we injected him.

We made sure we had dinner at home this evening so we could watch him in case he got a hypo attack.

About an hour after the injection I noticed his back legs looked a little unsteady.’Time for a blood test’ says I. Up on the bench he goes with Richard sticking the pin in the ear.  Holy crap! He’s down to 3.1 already!

He ate  a bunch of cat food and I gave him a few droppers of sugar syrup because I knew he was going to fall further, because the peak is at 3 hours after the injection.

He slept for a bit while we watched him then he woke up to turn over and let out this very specific ‘hypo howl’.  (Doesn’t sound like his usual noises – its louder and deeper.)

‘Okay, time for another test and some more sugar’ says I. Richard measured him a 2.3 this time and I gave him some more sugar syrup and a roast chicken wing.  He’s scoffed that and gone back to sleep now.

Mozzle's Blood Sugar Levels and Insulin Injections over the past Week.

Mozzle's Blood Sugar Levels and Insulin Injections over the past 2 weeks.

The insulin he is on is too strong for him now I think.  We might need to move to something less potent. Alternatively we can try him on 1 unit of this insulin when he needs it every few days.  However, the experience of the vet is that 1 unit tends to be very ineffective.  It was my understanding that 1 unit is almost too small to have much impact on the blood sugar.  However, it might be what he needs now.

Ideally though it would be good to give him something less potent and more regularly.  Once a day would be ideal.

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Mozzwatch

Mozz measured 11.9 this morning, but he had eaten an early morning breakfast before measurements were taken.  So that is actually very good (considering he was 11.9 yesterday evening after food).

This evening he measured 11.8.  Very good!

I noticed see some of his hair growing back on his neck today too.

Tonight they escaped out the apartment door into the corridoor while we coming in with some groceries.  Oh the joy of forbidden…  they were so pleased with themselves it was sickening!

It had to happen eventually. Mozz is the Cooler King after all.

Mozzwatch

The last update was after Mozz had a hypo after his evening insulin. He had been needing less and less insulin and we had even skipped some doses. Skipping a dose was definitely a big milestone for Mozz.

He reached another milestone today. His blood sugar readings actually dropped without an insulin shot!

What had been happening previously was this: If Mozz’s sugars were too low to warrant an insulin injection we would simply skip it and then test him again 12 hours later.  If  he hadn’t reached a certain level on the sugar scale we would skip another dose and then re-test him.  And so on.

The day before yesterday, he was around 8.0 all day (morning and evening). He didn’t get any insulin then either because 8.0 is still below the ‘normal’ level for cats of 10-15. (For humans it is between 5-10.)

Yesterday, he was around 9.4 all day (9.3 in the morning and 10.3 in the evening).  He didn’t get any insulin then either. (We have decided only to administer it when he reaches 12.5.)

If we examine the pattern, his sugar readings go up slowly from the time of the last insulin injection, as the effect of the insulin wears off.

Except today, when this morning he measured 8.5, after measuring 10.3 the previous evening. This was despite receiving no insulin! This is a HUGE step forward for Mozz because it means his pancreas is now producing enough insulin to bring the his blood sugar reading down all by itself.

We were so excited and he looks fantastic today! He measured 11.9 this evening after eating a bowl of cat food (eating raises your blood sugars) which is in the ideal range.

We will be very interested to see if he is able to replicate his effort today when we measure him tomorrow morning.  Will it be higher than 11.9?  Or will his pancreas be able to cope and bring the sugar reading down again?

The magic medicine: a bit of tongue in the ear.

The magic medicine: love from a cute chick!

Mozzwatch

It’s 1am, only an hour after my last post.

I measured his sugars and he is 2.6.  That’s on the road to recovery and he looks fine.  Exhauted but fine. (He is always exhausted after a hypo.) I’ve put him to bed with Richard in his usual spot (under the arm) while I drink a cup of tea and check out if eBay has my dream handbag yet.

I don’t actually know what this bag is.  I hope I’ll know it when I see it.

And I hope that when I see it it will be within budget.

To aid in the budget part, I have a preselected search that removes anything with Hermes or Vuitton in it. That still leaves plenty of room for damage right?

If you like bags then check out PurseBlog.  I have kindly set the link to take you to the Chloe selection.  Me likey.

The Edith (which I love but which tends to take people out in the mall and therefore might get me arrested and possibly deported if I don't downgrade to something more aerodynamic).

The Edith, which I love but which tends to bang into people in the mall, and therefore might get me arrested and possibly deported. It's time to change to something more aerodynamic.

Mozzwatch

On the evening of the 25th his sugars were still low at 6.9 (remembering that ideal is between 10 and 15). We skipped the insulin again that evening.

The next morning – that’s today – his blood sugars were 11.3.  That’s almost exactly ideal.  So we gave him his usual 2 units of insulin.  He was rather hungry during the day which to me indicates his blood sugars are a little low.  However, I didn’t feel the need to take his sugars because he was full of beans and showing no real signs of any trouble.

This evening he gave a reading of 9.8 which is just under ideal.  This is a situation where we could really choose to go either way… give him 2 units of insulin or not give him any at all. After a short discussion we agreed to give him 2 units and see how he responded.

Why? Historically he has been more prone to hypoglycemia in the mornings than in the evenings.  That is why his regimen until recently was 2 units in the morning and 4 units in the evening (as set by the vet). For this reason we thought we would give him his insulin this evening – even though he almost didn’t need it – and skip the shot tomorrow morning if necessary (after taking his blood sugar reading of course).

Well, the theory was good… but he went into hypo anyway!

It’s becoming almost impossible to tell when he is having an attack. His body is so good at coping with it now. In earlier days he would have lost bladder and bowl control, be blind, screaming and convulsing when his sugars reached the low 1’s (1.1-1.3). Contrast that with this evening when he again gave a reading of ‘Low’ at 11pm. which is less than 1.0, and he showed so few symptoms I really wasn’t sure if I was being over-conscientious in deciding to measure them.

The clue was he was sitting down every now and then in places he wouldn’t normally sit. e.g. the middle of the bathroom floor. He was still capable of walking around and interacting with the family, having a chat and purring away. If I stared I thought I could almost see an almost imperceptible weakness in his back legs. Not a stagger by any means, but perhaps a a slight ‘lightness’ to his rear body.

When I finally decided to take his sugars I realised quickly that he was having a hypo.  He didn’t resist the lancet that pricks his ear for the blood test. A surefire sign of hypo for Mozz. And then he sat down on the bench while I was testing him.  Another sure sign. He will not do that unless he is in hypo – unequivocally. By the time the machine gave its reading I wasn’t surprised he was in hypo, although I was surprised that it was so low.

Lesson: when in doubt – do it!

I’ve given him some sugar and he has eaten a big bowl of cat food. I will measure him again soon at 12 midnight. That’s 1 hour after the initial reading of Low.

A glass of wine sir? (Thanks for the caption Pete!)

A glass of wine sir? (Thanks for the caption Pete!)

Mozzwatch

Interesting. His sugars were still on the low side this morning. 6.9

We felt if we gave him any insulin it would just send him into hypo(glycemia). So we have skipped the second insulin in a row.

Hope we did the right thing.?? You can really only tell if what you have done is right in hindsight with diabetes.

He looks happy today again and is hungry and eating.

It will be interesting to see what his sugar readings are this evening.

Mozz and Kell on the balcony.  They are getting along a better now. She doesn't look disgusted when he sits next to her anymore.

Mozz and Kell on the balcony. They are getting along a better now. She doesn't look disgusted when he sits next to her anymore. The cushion comes off the table in the evening when we eat dinner out there.

Mozzwatch

The Patient at home on the balcony watching the birds. Note the shaven flank (ultrasound), neck (feeding tube to stomach), front legs (bone marrow IV).  The holes from the injection sites are on his other side. Patchy old bastard!

The Patient at home on the balcony watching the birds. Note the shaven flank (ultrasound), neck (feeding tube to stomach), front legs (bone marrow IV). The holes from the injection sites are on his other side. Patchy old bastard!

Mozz has been needing less and less insulin since he arrived home several weeks ago. We started him on 2 units in the morning, and 4 units in the evening.

He had a bit of a hypo attack one evening so we dropped it to 3 units in the evening and kept a close eye on his blood sugars. His readings remained in the ideal range (10-15) so we didn’t take him back up to 4 units.

This morning he was a bit low (5.4) before he got his insulin and he had a hypo attack afterwards.  His body is getting better and better and coping with the attacks now.  Despite the fact that he was registering less than 1.0, and thus a reading of LOW  on the blood sugar testing tool, he maintained bladder control and managed to eat his way through several bowls of cat food.  The food, along with a few spoonfulls of sugar syrup, had him back to healthyshortly thereafter.

This evening he was still low at 5.3 so we decided not to give him any insulin.

This is the first time we have done this.

We will take his sugar readings in the morning and see if they have escalated. They should be high in theory but I am guessing they might only be slightly higher than ideal.

I think he will be able to be weaned off the insulin eventually.  His pancreas seems to be functioning well now and producing enough of his own insulin to support him.

The Patient at home on my pillow

The Patient at home on my pillow