Sunday, October 31, 2010


Since the beginning of this school year I've been on-and-off sick. Swollen lymph nodes, sore throat, exhaustion, bruising, and a sporadic low fever. Nothing too significant, just mostly a mild generalized malaise. Being the second year med student that I am I have subsequently created quiet an impressive differential diagnosis: lymphoma, leukemia, pericarditis, GI cancer, malaria, etc... but really, it's none of these. I am sure of that. Likely it is just stress and a reoccurance of anemia (which I have a long history with).

I was at health services for something else this week and in talking with the doctor, we decided to draw some labs to see if we could find the culprit. I'm not entierly sure what she ordered but I think it included a CBC, mono titer, and maybe something else. For kicks, and because she was definitive that this is all because I'm a type 1 diabetic (don't get me started on how frustrating this encounter was), she also drew a hba1c.

My blood work came back without any significant findings. So still no explanation for the generalized annoyance my body is dealing with. I'm relieved it isn't mono and really not all that concerned. It is possible that the malaise is cause by simple seasonal allergies, for which I just began taking Claritin. I also expect my endocrinologist (who is also my PCP) will want a full iron panel when I see him in a few weeks.

The point of this post? To acknowledge that 2nd year med students are crazy. It isn't fully our fault; pathology is enough to make anyone into a hypochondriac. However, more important, I'm now running a sort of psuedo-science experiment. My a1c was 8.1. It's definitely not ideal but also not horrible... My experiment is to see if 1 month of wearing my continuous glucose monitoring sensor will have an impact on my blood sugar control. Since it's only a month, and an hba1c measures a 3 month average, the change probably wont be too significant either way. Results will be determined through comparison between this 8.1 and my a1c when I see my endo later this month. I'm hoping that thinking of it as an experiment will motivate me to continue wearing the sensor through the month (which I tend to find annoying and a little painful) and that it will prove helpful with my control. I need to start developing a better relationship with the CGMS as I expect that it will be my saving grace for clinical rotations.

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