Monthly Archives: July 2018

Suicide, yes I said suicide


A subject we all seem to shy away from. And yet I am guessing it has been around for a long time and seems in my observance to be on the increase. Certainly amongst the medical field.

The root word is from latin sui – self and cidiim – killing, not even really a fair description.suicide

What bugs me more is the judgement. The condemnation, never mind of some. I feel that to a large degree is it because we are not connected any more and that the lack of true “support” across the board reigns. It seems we are all islands.

And yet it could be different. We could “support” people at large more and actually “be” there for people at large.

We have become shallower in our dealings with humans. Human to human is a connection we don’t seem to have anymore. And it is sad.

Suicide is a comment on our society and it is sad.

Not long ago I thought it was dentists that had the highest rate of all professions, medical doctors seem to have taken the lead and how very very sad this is. The healing profession seems unable to heal itself and yet is it as simple as that? What lurks beneath the murky surface of this awful predicament that has surfaced. Ego ? Burn-out? The eternal yearning to be the best? Denigration ? Putting people down? Army style? Again and again? Relentless hours? Death witnessed firsthand uncountable times and the expectation that you walk out the room and have a cuppa????

Many things.

Surely we can find the roots, and deal with them? Academia at large are seemingly unaccountable – should that not change?

Lives being lost as we speak – fathers, mothers, sisters, brothers.

Sad, sad. Is there something YOU can do today? Or will you choose to remain silent and impotent.

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Silent heart attack


What is a silent heart attack. An acute myocardial infarct where the patient feels no pain whatsoever. Diabetics are very prone to this. Particularly poorly controlled diabetics. If the average sugar is consistently above 10 mmol/l then the nerves to the various organs actually stop working. Which means in essence you don’t feel pain like you should.

The problem with not feeling the pain is that you don’t realise what is happening. So generally the patient presents later. Sometimes with confusion (acute), sometimes with electrolyte disturbances or unfortunately death.

Control of sugar is key.

A1c – three month average of the glucose must be performed in diabetics at least every 6 months and attended to if too high.

Controlled sugars prevent heart attacks. Controlled blood pressure prevents them too 😉

Tit bits and chunks of useful diabetes info


I was privileged to attend the Lilly summit 2018 in Durban this weekend with top notch speakers who literally infused my brain with a lovely soup of new information and better ways to help diabetics.

I posted most of the pearls on my face book feed – Claudine LEe/drleethegp.

There are few things more tantalising to a diabetes nerd that a day full of information soup, its like gourmet food for the brain and has the capacity to transform patients lives.

Thanks so Lilly for a lovely and well organised event. So wonderful too, to have Kenyan and Namibian continent there too.

 

Sticky mess 2


So when the sugar goes above 10 mmol/l (different values and way of measuring in the US and UK), the blood vessels : arteries and veins in the : eyes, heart, kidneys and feet and also EVERYWHERE (yes that includes the reproductive organs) SHUT – the sticky mess shuts them and so the cells can not get oxygen and they “starve” and can die.

That is when you have episodes like : stroke, heart attack or a black foot requiring amputation.

Or when you go blind, need dialysis or need to have a heart bypass/stent.

So what is the answer ? More meds, better meds ?? Maybe BUT mostly, more exercise, better eating habits, more exercise etc, consulting the team you know about re your diabetes : dietician, podiatrist, biokineticist, doctor, etc at least once a year.

If you keep the sticky mess away, did you know you live longer and better quality of life than your non-diabetic counterpart?

Diabetes college …


Should we open up a college to teach folk about diabetes. The diabetes man. Yeah.

A touch of sugar, my doctor says I have a little bit of sugar.

So much of confusion out there. Yes diabetes is here in a big way. Yes it’s logarithmically growing. Yes is perfectly preventable (type2). Yes there are massively big differences between being insulin dependant (type 1) and insulin deficient (varying degrees) type 2.

So yes maybe we need diabetes night school or even day school to tutor folk.

Yes you can not stuff endless amounts of carbs in your mouth. Yes that includes beer. It’s a carb. Yes it is.

Whiskey and water is better but in the quantity of one drink.

Yes fruit is full of carbs – sugar. Yes it is. No it is not great for diabetics. Does that mean you can’t eat fruit at all? No but the quantity and the type count.

Can a dietician help you ? Yes very much so.

Will exercise help ? Indeed, at least one hour though and a few times a week.

Do you have to run ? No, walking is actually better exercise.

Bottom line when your sugar goes above 10 in the blood stream things stick together. A Sticky mess.

Kana Uchema …


Karen Zoid and Yvonne Chaka Chaka have recently done this song, written in Venda Shona , what a beautiful language ….what beautiful words.

I had never even heard it spoken until the day I downloaded the song, I actually had to google it. And I have lived here in south africa since I was born. We have such huge talent in the beautiful land.karenyvonne

Karen is amazing at showcasing that. An amazing singer, human.

(Verse 1)
Iwe Neni
Ngatingova neyi nyika
Ndochido changu
Kugona uchinyemwerera

(Verse 2)
Ganda rako raka svibirira
Vhudzi rako raka fanana nerangu
Hukama hunoti batanidza
Newe makore akawanda

(Chorus)
Kana uchema
Ndinonzwa mwoyo wangu kurwadziwa x2

(Verse 3)
Mai nemwana
Varere wakafa musango
Apo mumwe murume aripa dambudziko
Muzita rehondo

(Ad-libs)
Taridza rudo rushoma
When you cry
When you cry
Don’t you cry brother
Don’t you cry sister

I feel it
I feel the cry

Karen Mashed this with the lyrics of linger into it – truly inspired. We are able to do so much more in this country. Love Karen, Love the queen of africa, go ladies and all talented people of south africa.

Taridza rudo rushoma …

 

Back in the office


After the most special trip to the eastern cape we returned full of love joy and hope and I am back in the office : 0832898351 🙂

Some amazing spots : The henry barkley bnb in Barkley East, the alpine swift in Rhodes and the Guardians lodge in Elliot – special amazing, reasonable, divine !!! Time out is really awesome.