Wednesday, October 10, 2012




A diabetic for more than fifty five years. I was one of the rarest species during 1959 when my diabetes was detected by my grandfather and father who were doctors. I was started with Boots Co. Insulin plain & Protomine Zine. This combination I was taking once a day for the first twenty years. Then, after coming in contact with Dr. M Viswanathan I was asked to take the Insulin twice a day. It was that I first came across the dietitians who were and who are the main pillars for the case of diabetic patients.

My HbA1c used to be always around 8%. Here I would like to mention one thing. When the HbA1c test was Rs. 250 during 1978 – 80 everywhere in all the diagnostic centre, only in Dr m Viswanathan’s centre it was Rs.30. Even after 30years even now the charge in Dr Mohan’s is only Rs. 290/- where outside in most labs they charge between Rs. 400 to Rs. 450/- for this test. Having crossed 52 years of age as a diabetic without complications I have undergone many hypoglycemic spells (over 5000). Dr Mohan describes me as one of the unique patients who had been on once a day insulin for over 20 years and despite of this I have not developed into any diabetic complication whatsoever. All thanks are due to the Almighty and possibly my genetic condition that I did not develop any complication. Here I would like to mention that diabetes varies from person to person. I would like to thank Dr. Munirathnam Chetty of Coimbatore who tried to put me in the best way and my thanks to all Coimbatorians and friends and relatives who helped me during the hypoglycemic spells. My special thanks and gratitude to my wife and my daughter who have been looking after me so well with utmost care and affection.

I have been successfully working as a self-employed professional photographer and my specializations is taking portraits. I have covered more than 1200 weddings successfully. I would like to mention one more thing. I have been attending so many weddings, where I come across delicious and great food. Its not that I avoid sweets completely. I do take a little, but I also take lot of vegetables and adjust my food accordingly as far as calories are concerned. Sometimes I also increase dose of regular insulin by 5 or 10 units. As patients we have to adjust the dose of insulin and diet since the doctors cannot be with us all the time.

Awareness regarding diabetes was almost nil during 1960s when I used to develop hypoglycemia in my classroom during my 9th year to 12th year. My teachers especially male teachers who used to make fun of me stating that the classroom was not a room to have siesta or to eat.

My advice to all the diabetic patients is to never to sleep alone due to possibility of nocturnal hypoglycemic reactions. Here too I would like to mention one thing. Because of low sugar reaction our body gets into so called the somogyi effect (i.e) whenever the low sugar happens our body system pours out all the stored up glucose from the liver and this raises the blood glucose and may even raise it above normal.
I know Dr Mohan ever since he was doing his MD. At that time he did the ECHO test for me. They were surprised to find that my heard was absolutely fine. This was 34 years ago. Even now, I am proud to say that my Echocardiography is absolutely fine.

My tips and suggestions to other diabetic patients are:
  1. never sleep alone
  2. carry an “I am a diabetic” card when going out.
  3. we should learn to monitor ourselves with insulin, taking and food, since doctors cannot be with us always.
  4. I feel insulin is the drug of choice for any diabetic. The cost of insulin is very low when compared to the cost of treating complications of diabetes. If by a couple of insulin pricks a day one can live for over 50 years like me without complications, is not insulin a life saver? Hence please don’t refuse to take insulin if your doctor advises you. 


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