Living with neonatal diabetes | Gareth’s story | Diabetes UK
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Living with neonatal diabetes | Gareth’s story | Diabetes UK

October 31, 2019


I was diagnosed originally back in 1977
I was eight weeks old I was by all accounts very close to dying
and this doctor consultant walked in he wasn’t from the hospital from what I
understand and he asked if I’d been tested for diabetes. My dad had to go and
get the prescriptions which were because I was so small you had to go daily to
get the prescriptions off the doctor. Years of checking your child,
which is me, it’s a you know in sleep. My brother who doesn’t live in the
country anymore so he was four when I was diagnosed so a lot of pressure, a
lot pressure on a four-year-old to keep an eye out for his brother. Wind
the story on, is how I grew up with diabetes and everything, to 2008 so I
literally just had my diabetes appointment at the hospital. I got
sent this letter so it just said please come along something might radically
change your treatment. I take four vials of blood and it just got sent off
to Exeter by courier and about a week later I got another letter saying I
fit the trial. I was one of the oldest that they’d found up till then
so then I went on to this a treatment plan, my insulin and half
tablet for this was over about eight weeks eventually it came, my
HbA1c came down to best it’s ever been. I went from two to three, I’ve only
gone up one tablet it could be that I’m taking a load of tablets but the whole
thing is this is like it’s … I don’t know how to describe it’s like smoke
and mirrors, they don’t know how long the treatment will last for, but yeah I’m on
the gliclazide tablet so which is basically used for Type 2. The assumptions
people have got is they bond everything together no matter what diabetic you are
they bond everything together, ‘Oh should you be eating that?’, well he said you know, it’s stuff literally like that. ‘Oh you shouldn’t be drinking
beer should you, or wine’, why not? I’ve not been held back, at home
dad never allowed me to be held back I was just, I was playing sports I
was playing football, running, out on my bike till like you know, normal kid
stuff, I don’t ever remember, I worked from a very young age so like paper
rounds and then working in a cafe. I’ve never been held back in any way
shape or form by them.

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