Top of Mind Thursday September 27, 2018: A Quarter of a Century Later

Top of Mind Thursday

This week’s subject is a little different.

Sunday was the 25th anniversary of the day my two-year-old daughter Ilana was diagnosed with Type 1 insulin-dependent (T1D) diabetes.

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We’ve come a long way since 1993. We have new monoclonal fast-acting and time-release insulin. We have glucose meters that take a mere fraction of the blood required back then. We have insulin infusion pumps, and continuous glucose monitoring systems, and technologies that are making strides towards delivering an artificial pancreas.

But we’re not there yet. This is still a disease that must be managed by patients and their families 24×7. Blood sugars need to be checked every few hours. Food needs to be analyzed for carbohydrate content. Exercise, excitement, and even mild illness can throw the balance off big time. And for unknown reasons, the rate of diagnosis continues to climb–an increase of 20% in just the last 10 years.

And there are still tragedies. Just last week, I learned of two lives cut way too short: a 26 year old boy who died of high blood sugar because he couldn’t afford to buy enough insulin, and a 10 year old girl whose glucose levels went so low during the night that she never woke up.

That’s why next month Ilana and I will participate in the JDRF Walk for a Cure at Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara.

We walk for all the kids and families who struggle with this disease, and for those that are no longer with us. We walk to fund the research that looks for the cure. We walk to educate people about the 1.25 million Americans who have T1D.

And we walk so that 25 years from now, we will be counting the years since Type 1 became Type none.

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