LifeAfterDx--Diabetes Uncensored

A internet journal from one of the first T1 Diabetics to use continuous glucose monitoring. Copyright 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016

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Location: New Mexico, United States

Hi! I’m William “Lee” Dubois (called either Wil or Lee, depending what part of the internet you’re on). I’m a diabetes columnist and the author of four books about diabetes that have collectively won 16 national and international book awards. (Hey, if you can’t brag about yourself on your own blog, where can you??) I have the great good fortune to pen the edgy Dear Abby-style advice column every Saturday at Diabetes Mine; write the Diabetes Simplified column for dLife; and am one of the ShareCare diabetes experts. My work also appears in Diabetic Living and Diabetes Self-Management magazines. In addition to writing, I’ve spent the last half-dozen years running the diabetes education program for a rural non-profit clinic in the mountains of New Mexico. Don’t worry, I’ll get some rest after the cure. LifeAfterDx is my personal home base, where I get to say what and how I feel about diabetes and… you know… life, free from the red pens of editors (all of whom I adore, of course!).

Thursday, October 11, 2007

No such thing as a free cat: The next chapter.

So I’ve been writing about Diabetes for years. I talk about technology, policy, economics. I rant and rave. I joke and scold. I share the good and the bad. Sometimes I just stir the pot to see what will happen.

But guess which post generated the most email in my inbox?



Nope. Guess again.

Yep. That’s right. My post There’s no such thing as a free lunch, which detailed the story of how our cat Khaki adopted us. Apparently there is some sort of connection between D-folk and cats. If you are a diabetic reading this and a cat does not live with you­­--you are very much in the minority. I know dogs can be trained to warn of hypos; maybe we should focus on training cats. No wait a minute. What am I saying? Cats can’t be trained. They are what they are. Independent. Intelligent. Curious. Wonderful. But most certainly not trainable.

So I got hundreds of emails full of cat advice. Stop worrying. We did not use the flea collar. We got her all her shots. Yes, she’s got special Siamese food. Royal Cannin Siamese 38. Not cheap at all, but she likes it, it treats her well and I should be grateful she’s not one of those finicky types who only eats canned food.

She’s grown at lot. Long and lean. She’s frisky and goes into “attack cat” mode frequently.

And she’s now “fixed.” So all of you can stop fretting about that. Set us back $176.87, including an optional blood chemistry panel that checked her liver function etc. to make sure the anesthesia would be safe.

When they sprung this option on us a the Vet’s at the last minute Debbie and I looked at each other and shrugged. In for a penny, in for a pound. Khaki had chosen to entrust us with her life by joining the family. It would be disloyal in the extreme to get cheap with such a precious gift. We signed off on the extra fee.

I got a print out of the feline blood panel they ran. I look at human blood work daily. I found it fascinating to compare the cat to the man, as it were. We are not-so-distant cousins after all. Cats and people share more than most people can ever dream.

It knew that of course. I remember a professor telling me that the girl next to me and an oak tree share 99% of the same DNA. It is the little differences that make us tree or person.

But back to cat blood.

Many of the things they checked are the same things the Dr. E ordered for me earlier this week. The reference ranges are quite a bit different, however. For instance, Khaki’s blood glucose was 111 mg/dl; actually better than mine, but in her case within the normal range of 74 to 159 for cats. I guess you’re not a pre-diabetic cat until you’re over 159. Huh. Boy, cats get all the breaks.

The vet checked her Creatinine (a marker of kidney function), her ALT and ALK Phos (liver); sodium, potassium; and all the various goodies that make up a complete blood panel: white blood count, HCT, HGB, etc., etc.

Basically, the Vet ran the same test on Khaki that Docs run on humans.

For $41.60, a hell of a lot less than I paid.


Maybe next time I need a blood draw I should go to the Vet…..


Blogger RichW said...

We love cats in our house as well but we've not had one for many years. Our youngest daughter and her husband have six they’ve rescued.

I have a comment about insurance companies. There's a conspiracy underway with CVS and the health insurance companies. I just got a prescription at CVS and I noticed at the bottom of the receipt a line that read Hershey Candy Bars --- 3. I asked the clerk what that was all about. She said they keep track of the number of candy bars you buy if you have a CVS card. I used my wife's card. I told her that if she becomes diabetic or has a problem with arterial blockage the insurance company can deny her coverage based on her candy bar total. I better be careful what I put on my card.

2:20 PM  
Blogger Lili said...

Heyyy, when my cats get their bloodwork done at the vet, it costs the same as I'd have to pay out of pocket for mine.

8:47 PM  

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