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Mo - Interview 25

Age at interview: 52
Age at diagnosis: 51
Brief Outline: Diagnosed a year ago, Mo currently takes metformin and gliclazide though she began trying to control her diabiates by diet alone.
Background: Mo is an administrator and is married with 3 children aged 34, 26 and 2. Ethnic background/Nationality: Jamaican.

More about me...

Mo was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes when she went for a health check before going on holiday to Jamaica. She had been experiencing some of the symptoms for a while - extreme thirst, weight loss and needing to urinate frequently. She recognised those symptoms could be signs of diabetes and so was not surprised when she was diagnosed. 

While Mo was on holiday she ate a lot of sweet mangoes which she loves. However she believes eating so many mangoes made her come up in bumps and her skin feel sore. Initially when diagnosed, Mo was advised to try to control her blood glucose levels by diet, but looking back she felt she did not have enough specific information about how to change her diet. Over the first few months her blood glucose levels continued to be high, so she was put on metformin and gliclazide.

The specialist diabetes nurse at her GP practice told Mo about an ongoing randomised trial study looking at the effect of diet, exercise and medication on people newly-diagnosed with diabetes, and Mo decided to join the study. She finds the study useful because she feels she is getting plenty of medical attention and information. She feels lucky to be able to see the study nurse whenever she needs to, and is pleased to have regular health checks. Mo does not like taking medication and hopes that she may be able to reduce her dose of metformin in the future.

 

Mo takes small portions of sweet food she is offered at dinners or asks for some fruit instead.

Mo takes small portions of sweet food she is offered at dinners or asks for some fruit instead.

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I mean do you, supposing you were to go to somebody's house for dinner or something, for a meal, would you tell them that you were diabetic or, would like, would you'?

Not make a point, but you know maybe just, if it's obvious if someone really, if it offered something that you think, 'Oh no, it'd be better not to have that, or just have a little bit and see', or you know, there's nothing contagious about it I would say so it wouldn't hurt to say, and equally you don't have to say, if you don't want to. But other than what you're gonna consume you just say, 'Well I'm actually diabetic so, I'll just have a little bit rather than a big portion, or not have that, you know maybe have a piece of fruit or something'. Not because you're diabetic but you don't want your sugar level to you know go the other way so that you go hypo or whatever.
 

Mo recently took part in a diabetes study and says she felt more supported by that than by the...

Mo recently took part in a diabetes study and says she felt more supported by that than by the...

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And as for the doctors, you know you make an appointment and you see a locum nine times out of ten so again I don't feel I know the doctors well enough or they don't know me well enough because when I go I find that they're looking more at the screen for information you know rather than actually interacting with me as a patient.

Yeah, I mean you feel like you get more attention in the study that you would...?

Well certainly because there's, it's like you've got a one to one person and you can say, 'Well I've got this symptom and you know', chew it over, they're checking your weight, they're checking you know your diet and you don't have that sort of thing with your doctor I mean, say you go in, and it's a screen and off you go. So, rightly or wrongly but they just don't have the time for that sort of, I think that's why they set up with a diabetic nurse, but as I say because I'm seeing a diabetic nurse, and I'm seeing a dietician, and I'm seeing a doctor I think, I'm getting a better deal than someone who just goes along to their GP or the practice.
 

Mo says most of the people she works with don't understand much about diabetes and tend to make...

Mo says most of the people she works with don't understand much about diabetes and tend to make...

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I mean do you, supposing you were to go to somebody's house for dinner or something, for a meal, would you tell them that you had diabetes or, would like, would you'?

Not make a point, but you know maybe just, if it's obvious if someone really, if it offered something that you think, 'Oh no, it'd be better not to have that, or just have a little bit and see', or you know, there's nothing contagious about it I would say so it wouldn't hurt to say, and equally you don't have to say, if you don't want to. But other than what you're gonna consume you just say, 'Well I actually have diabetes so, I'll just have a little bit rather than a big portion, or not have that, you know maybe have a piece of fruit or something'. Not because you have diabetes but you don't want your sugar level to you know go the other way so that you go hypo or whatever.

I mean at work they'll say 'Oh, anybody want a biscuit, oh no you'd better not have that.' And I said, 'Well yeah I can have, you know, one or two.', but there's like people don't know, a lot of it is if you're ignorant isn't it, to what it means. But you shouldn't have to change what you do other than, do it in moderation.

And in your experience have you come across any kind of myths to do with diabetes?

I suppose but, I haven't really had it that long but, but a lot of people say, again what I was saying you know, 'You've got sugar', and what they don't, themselves know what it means. And sometimes they just say there's two types but they don't know what the differences are. Why do you need to inject yourself when, you know, there are tablets. But yeah I would say that a lot of people don't really know, but you don't need to know if you don't, you don't need to know if you don't know, you don't have to know in't it, unless you've got someone a bit with the symptoms.
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