Coincidences are a trip, aren’t they? Like when you think of someone you haven’t seen in forever and suddenly you hear from them? Most of us have had experiences like that and I seem to be having a surge in this phenomenon lately.
Recently, I wrote about a meeting I had with a JDRF rep who mentioned a fellow D-Mom that she wanted me to meet named Sarah. A couple of hours after leaving the meeting I met Sarah, quite by chance, in a children’s clothing store. That had me scratching my head and pondering the mysterious powers of the universe for days afterward.
Well, it’s happened again.
Just this morning I was drying my hair, lost in thought as I usually am during this daily post-shower ritual. I was thinking about Jenna starting full time kindergarten next fall. As you can imagine, this is something that has been on my mind a lot lately. I was mentally composing the brief speech that I plan to deliver to the staff prior to the start of the school year in, an effort to teach them what they will need to know to ensure Jenna’s safety. I arrived at the point where I would present the glucagon kit to them…and my mind came to a screeching halt.
This is about where I figure I will lose many of them. When I start explaining the process of reconstituting the glucagon powder in the vial with the saline in the syringe, then drawing up only half the normal adult dose and administering a lifesaving, intramuscular injection to my little girl should she become unconscious and unable to ingest carbohydrates by mouth, I imagine they’ll be making every effort to look confident on the outside while silently screaming on the inside. I get that. It’s not something I like to imagine having to do either. It’s bad enough that the nature of the situation requiring the administration of glucagon would be a stressful one, but then to expect a person to remember how to perform a multi-step, invasive procedure to literally save a child’s life – a procedure the person has likely never had the oportunity to practice, well, the task is incredibly daunting, to say the least.
Why can’t this be like using an EpiPen on a child having an anaphylactic reaction?! There must be a way!
With an EpiPen, all that is essentially required is to uncap the pen and press it against the victims upper, outer leg, holding it there long enough for the lifesaving epinephrine to be administered (about 10 seconds). It can’t get much simpler than that. The reason glucagon can’t be packaged the same way is because the glucagon isn’t stable when it is in liquid form. It must be mixed just prior to being administered. Therein lies the dilemma.
So I was sitting in the living room with my family this evening, one eye on the movie we were watching and another eye on my Twitter feed. I read a tweet from Amy who writes a fabulous blog called Diabetes Mine. Amy has been attending the third annual Roche Diabetes Social Media Summit in San Diego for the past few days. Her tweet stated that while attending the summit this year, she “..got a demo of a new GlucaPen for easy emergency glucose delivery.” Included with her tweet is a link to a post she had written almost one year ago, which you can read here, describing the GlucoPen that is in the works that reduces the steps required to reconstitute and administer the life-saving glucagon!
This is so fantastic! It’s exactly what I was wishing for as I was drying my hair this morning! I’m not sure when this cool little device will be made available to the public, but it sounds pretty promising. Maybe soon I will be able to present teachers and school office staff with a much less intimidating, more user-friendly device to use in the event of a worst case scenario. It can’t come soon enough. And it’s rather interesting that just this morning I was daydreaming about this very thing.
I think tomorrow morning, while I dry my hair, I’ll utter a wish for a cure. It’s worth a try.