Neither of us felt great on Tuesday a week and a half ago. By mid-day Wednesday we were camped out on the couch coughing, feverish and watching the Olympics.
We visited our respective primary care providers on Thursday. Both were out of diagnostic swabs but our symptoms of fever, aches, cough and utter exhaustion led both to diagnose us the old-school way.
Despite getting flu shots and obsessive hand washing and hand sanitizing, we ended up with the flu.
Because of the afore-mentioned flu shots, the experience was allegedly less awful than it could have been. Nevertheless we spent Wednesday through Monday pretty much immobilized in front of the television.
Diabetes, needless to say, did not like the flu. The night before it hit was a multi-juice box night, which is consistent with my daughter's pattern when she's coming down with a virus. Despite no medical information to back me up, I've always assumed these pre-symptom lows were caused by her body waging a last-minute battle against whatever germs have invaded.
Then the blood sugars headed up. And stayed there. Days would usually start out okay- higher than usual but nothing crazy. Then, despite temp basals, corrections, and a diet consisting mostly of chicken soup, she'd crest 300 by mid-afternoon.
By bedtime (which was before 9 several nights- when sitting on the couch became too exhausting) she was sliding back into an acceptable-for-being-sick range. My saintly husband took overnight duty a few nights in a row, each of which required at least one correction bolus.
By Sunday afternoon and Monday the highs weren't SO high and the correction boluses began to actually work a little. She was on the mend.
We've done diabetes + colds, stomach viruses, strep, pneumonia, chicken pox, dental surgery, ear infections and more, but never flu. There was quite a bit of transferrable information from our experiences with other ailments. We knew about the necessity of frequent glances at the CGM, setting increased temporary basal rates on the pump, and aggressive correction boluses for highs. We knew that with patience and perseverance blood sugar would return to normal as the illness passed.
The primary novelty of the flu compared to our countless other illness + diabetes experiences was the duration of being really sick. With the illness lingering, in a serious way, for nearly a week it was a long wait for blood sugars to look more like they usually do. The silver lining was that both of us were too sick to expend any energy worrying about it. It took everything we had just to keep our tea mugs full.