I’m frustrated, and I’m hoping some of my lovely blog-followers can chime in with their two cents, because I’d love to hear more opinions on this.
The question is: how long can a type 1 diabetic go without any insulin before it poses the risk for serious harm?
I ask because over at Tudiabetes.org there is a discussion going where someone was asked not only to fast from food before lab work, but also asked to fast from insulin. As in, come to get your lab work done having taken no insulin for 6-8 hours prior.
I commented that this was ridiculous and could put a person’s life in danger, and that this person might find it in their best interest to search out a new doctor or lab.
…to which this person, who apparently doesn’t really want help or advice at all, told me that he was ‘ROFL’ at me and that I am essentially being ridiculous; that it would take ‘a whole bunch of days’ without insulin before any genuine/serious harm could occur.
I said it wasn’t safe based on personal experience. When I was an idiot undergrad not taking care of myself I skipped injections sometimes. And look where that got me….A1cs in the double digits, DKA 3 times, and on those days I felt like crap because my BGs were between 400 and infinity. In addition, last year in February my boyfriend had to take me to a Chicago ER while I was visiting him down there because I went into DKA very unexpectedly. It seems my pump wasn’t delivering some/all of my insulin for several hours…but it couldn’t have been all day because the early part of the day my BGs were fine. So after just a few hours with little or no insulin…I was in DKA. DKA that landed me in the ICU for two horrible days. (I still owe my boyfriend big time for that one…he slept sitting up in a horrible chair for two nights, at my side…and we’d been dating only 2 months at that point…what a guy!)
So, DOC…what do you think? Is it safe to willingly go 6-8 hours without any insulin (including basal)?