Last night we faced an interesting predicament with Jeanie’s blood glucose levels. She ended the day a little high and had a hard time shifting her levels downward before dinner, despite consistent correction boluses. She gave a generous bolus with dinner, where she capped the long day with a delicious salad and plate of meatballs. However, an hour later she was still high and her levels hadn’t moved in the desired direction since the end of the hike.
She did a mental review of the day, and after thinking it through, realized what might be the issue. It was a long day through a long flat region with high sun exposure. Our best guess is that, although Jeanie was wearing pants to protect her pump from direct light, the heat may have compromised the effectiveness of her insulin. This being so, when she later tried to deliver her bolus insulin, she was indeed receiving the medicine but it was not producing the anticipated and purposed outcome.
Jeanie quickly troubleshooted by finding a new pod, filling it with fresh insulin, and inserting it on her opposite leg. It did the trick, and Jeanie was soon able to stabilize at a level in her desired range. Jeanie is well aware of the potential issues of heat affecting insulin, and has been careful throughout this trip to keep her insulin in a specially designed “frio pac.” She submerges the pac in water and it will keep the insulin at an optimal temperature for up to three days. Jeanie has been playing it safe on this trip and checking the bag every or every other day to ensure it is still cool. She has noted that there are a variety of her diabetes items she could do without, because she was diligent with organizing backups. However, her insulin is a must-have that cannot go wrong. So better safe than sorry! She was grateful for this as she filled her new pod with insulin that she was confident would be effective.
Good work Jeanie, to think on your feet and make it through this hot and challenging day! Today we covered a total of 24 miles from Fromista to Calzadilla de la Cueza!