The first day, I had a test in which I was hooked up to two IVs, one in each arm. One was to deliver glucose and then insulin, and the other was to draw blood. I was first given a large dose of glucose, so much that it actually made me feel flushed and light headed for a minute. My blood was drawn every few minutes and the glucose level was measured. Then at 20 minutes, I was given insulin (1.64 units) and my glucose was again checked every few minutes. Then I was drawn every 10 minutes or so for about 2 more hours. The goal was to see how the islet cells responded these two events. I haven't seen the actual data yet, but Dr. Bellin says it looks good. The islets were able to handle the glucose and resist the insulin.
On the second day, I again went in fasting, and immediately had my blood drawn. I was then given a calculated amount of a liquid (Boost) with a set amount of carbs. I was drawn again after 90 minutes and my C-peptide was checked.
This was an important visit, because these tests are designed to measure how effective the transplant is. Because I am off of insulin, I feel certain that mine is considered a success, but it will be nice to see how the data reflects this.
We had a long rainy drive back home, but the trip was enjoyable. My mom was able to connect with some of her old Minneapolis friends, and we had a nice dinner with one of her cousins on one of our nights there.
When I got home, I had an e-mail saying that the tests showed that my LDL was 127 which is high. It was recommended that I start taking a statin to lower my cholesterol. Since I really hated the thought of any more pills or medication in general, I asked to speak with Dr. Bellin about it. She says that changing my diet will help some, but that the problem is probably being caused more by the rapamune. So, I am attempting to cut some fat out of my diet. I never really worried about it before. I thought watching my carbs and total calories was enough to worry about. So I probably do have some room for error. And I am on a low dose of Lipitor. My hope is to get my cholesterol back down with the Lipitor and keep it down with diet.