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|01 Born Plymouth. Father went from Welsh mine to sick birth attendant in Navy to Lieutenant Commander. Happy working/middle class childhood.|
|02 Diagnosed aged 4, 1943, by GP. Sent to Greenbank Hospital. Low dosage of soluble insulin twice daily. Never admitted. Traumatic for mother. Regular visits for blood test…|
|03 …then later in day returned for result. Active life with no bad hypos before teens. At first mother did injections, then me.|
|04 Urine test at home. Mother didn`t keep to diet, except no sugar. Diabetic products expensive. As got older, controlled sugar by adjusting insulin. Did sport.|
|05 In teens heard older patients discussing calories, but mother ignored calories. Balanced insulin, diet & activity, as recommended nowadays. Had warnings of…|
|06 …hypos. Took Dextrasol. No conflict with clinic re diet. Dr. Shaw gave good advice.|
|07 Took home diet sheets & scales, but diet never strict. |
Fellow pupils not aware of diabetes. Never used it as excuse.
|08 I`ve always hidden diabetes. Only revealed if had hypo. Quick recovery with glucose.|
|09 In teens, played hockey, danced, walked home. Took Dextrasol. No major hypos until older. People surprised I had diabetes (though mentioned in job applications). Memories of hypos when commuting.|
|10 Some hypos began at puberty. Stressful grammar school regime. Friends carried me home. Mother a worrier but sensible. No phone, but used someone else`s to consult GP. Father kept any eye on me.|
|11 Attended grammar schools in Navy ports. Diabetes never mentioned. |
When in 6th form in Gillingham, dived into Navy swimming pool & hit head. Shock affected diabetes. In hospital 3 weeks. Changed to new Lente insulin once daily.
|12 After change to Lente around ‘57, initially kept to careful regime. |
Left school at 18 to train as accountant with Phillips Electrical in London. Commuted.
|13 Lived rent-free until earned enough to pay mother rent. Moved to engineering firm. Became Fellow of Institute in `71. Career took off – moved from company to company.|
|14 Moved around country. When interviewed for Philips, talked about jazz! In all jobs, diabetes mentioned at first, but soon forgotten. |
Once had hypo on way to work & Phillips called ambulance.
|15 Girlfriends didn`t know re diabetes because took less insulin before going out. Told wife-to-be, because she was epileptic. (Her fits later stopped.)|
|16 Married in `63. Played sport well into 30s. Sons born `67 and 70 – neither has diabetes or epilepsy.|
|17 While sons growing up, didn`t do blood tests, rarely saw GP. Gave up going to diabetic clinics because saw different person each time – useless.|
|18 Moved to Hexham 1980, saw same person at hospital, but treatment same, so gave up going. Had fewer problems than most diabetics & know how to treat myself, especially now blood test automated.|
|19 Test before bed because no hypo warnings in sleep. Bought new technologies when prices came down. Test strips on prescription. Adjust insulin to anticipated exercise.|
|20 Bought Accutest when seeing Dr. Lloyd privately in `83. People shocked by my readings being 7,8,9, but suits me – Dr. McNally understands. Best test is HbA1c.|
|21 HbA1c also around 7,8. |
Began seeing Dr. Lloyd privately in `83 – much more thorough than NHS clinics.
|22 No waiting & personal treatment. Moved near Leicester. GP suggested private check-up on work insurance. Found I needed heart bypass.|
|23 Surgery went fine at BUPA hospital. Gave up smoking. Problem with right leg. Doctor said return after few months. Immediately after return home, toes turned black…|
|24 …phoned GP. Admitted Leicester Royal Infirmary because BUPA had no room. Leg bypass took 6 hours. Months to recover. Not result of heart bypass but of diabetes.|
|25 Had had diabetes for nearly 60 years & smoked heavily. After leg bypass, very emotional as predicted. Had hypo – alarmed staff (non-diabetic specialists).|
|26 Problems with foot continued well into 2002. Tried different dressings. Cardiovascular surgeon offered choice between another leg bypass or…|
|27 amputation. Ross Naylor amputated at Leicester Royal Infirmary. Traumatic, but no pain. NHS very good, except for running out of tablets.|
|28 Staff on ward didn`t know re diabetes. Had to persuade them to let me adjust insulin. But impressed by limb centre phoning soon after return home.|
|29 Set myself target of 3 months from amputation to walking unaided. Lots of help at limb centre, but problems with blistering. Car converted. |
Bits of NHS super. Medical staff work hard, but…
|30 Examples of bad management. Emergency caused staff to leave open wound. Physiotherapists & surgeons don`t talk to each other. |
I pay chiropodist – said to him half price now!
|31 Now two-thirds price! |
Don`t blame anyone for past delays - NHS medical staff caring people, coping with moaning patients – but organisation could be better.
Amputation restricting but hasn`t stopped travel. But now trouble with toe on left leg.
|32 This time quicker response. Antibiotics helping. But cancelled USA holiday.|
|33 Can`t forget diabetes, but don`t think about it most of time. Advice: get young GP with up-to date knowledge. Live moderately, but don`t let diabetes rule life. |