I have completed Insulin on Board, my final project for the Data Representation class at ITP. Insulin on Board is a part of Databetes, my project focused on using data to improving diabetes health outcomes. As a type-1 diabetic of 25 years, I know first-hand that patients need greater support in making all the daily decisions that affect their blood sugar control. A PDF version that shows the whole piece can be seen at http://bit.ly/KRTCzP
I remember that June 14, 1986 was a Saturday. At age 12, I went with my mother that day to see my doctor. My health had been deteriorating for weeks. I had no energy, no appetite and an unquenchable thirst.
Several hours and a few lab tests later, I was diagnosed with type-1 diabetes. I had no idea what that meant at the time. But when my mother started crying, I knew this couldn’t be good. By the end of the day I was checked into the hospital, learning how to mix short and long-acting insulins in a syringe, test my own blood sugar and count carbohydrates.
Fast-forward 25 years and I am doing well! A check-up last week showed my HbA1c was a healthy 6.6% (diabetics aim for a reading below 7%). Eye exams have found no sign of diabetic retinopathy. A host of other lab tests consistently come back normal. With stable control, I have traveled the world in recent years for work as a photographer and run two marathons.
On a daily basis, I use three devices to control my diabetes: an insulin pump, a continuous glucose monitor (CGM) and a standard blood glucose monitor.