My daughter's middle school musical was this past weekend.  She had a few lines and one phrase of song around the middle of the first act.  Throughout the show, she sang and danced as part of the 'chorus.'

It seems theater will require the honing of some new diabetes management skills. The first night, her pre-show blood sugar was in the high 100's: just fine for shortly after dinner.  At intermission, after her big part, she texted me from backstage.  Her blood sugar was 301: very high.  While in the back of my mind I was factoring in adrenaline while helping her tweak the pump's recommended correction, I had her dose a substantial amount of insulin.

I do know that adrenaline affects her blood sugar, and that depending on the circumstances, some or most of the resulting high will resolve itself on its own.   Revisiting my spelling bee post might have refreshed my memory, or reading this Diabetes Forecast interview with Crystal Bowersox.  Particularly the following:

Q. Does performing affect your blood glucose? It does affect it, actually. Right now my routine is: I’ll check my sugar one to two hours before hitting the stage. And then if it’s too high or too low, I can adjust accordingly. If it’s too high, I’ll take half the amount of insulin I’m supposed to take because adrenaline makes your blood sugar go up. But it also comes down on its own. You don’t have to correct for an adrenaline high, and if you do, you end up bottoming out after the show. It’s been a struggle to find that fine balance, but I feel like I’ve got it now.

It's hard to let a number like 301 ride, but I definitely overreacted.  I therefore found myself up all night chasing low blood sugars. The physiology is beyond me, but somehow that spike disappeared on its own, leaving a boatload of insulin to keep working well into the night.

Saturday saw a similar pattern, with a 308 at intermission.  This time, having learned something Friday, I had her give about a third of the suggested insulin.  Despite pizza, chips and a cookie an hour later at the cast party, then more pizza and a dessert buffet at a friend's after-party, she stayed in the 100's all night. 

She thoroughly enjoyed rehearsing for and performing the play, so I expect we'll have some more theater experiences ahead of us.  As with many other diabetes tricks of the trade we've picked up over the years, we'll figure this one out too.


1 comment:

  1. holy bowersox! what a resource. is it that the adrenaline high will fix itself before the insulin can really get cranking?

    you are doing such a good job. i am in awe.


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