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    Copperhead bite
    hootyowl2 posted:
    I havent been here in awhile, but thought this would be relevant on here. Healing of any wound, has much to do with how well you control your blood sugars. I am not perfect at it, but thankfully, mine have been fairly stable and my A1c's around 6.+. My latest was 6.2. I am on 20 units of Lantus daily, plus PRN Humalog.

    Recently, I was working in my yard and reached for some grass to pull. I did not see the vermin because it was a bite and run accident. He bit my right index finger, thankfully, only one fang got me. I called some family and friends, but no one could come so I called 911 right away. Even so, by the time EMS got there, the swelling was half way up my hand. I had put ice on it, but found out later that has fallen out of favor?

    I was in the ER 6 hrs that night, and had an anaphylatic reaction to one of the meds they gave me. I am VERY ALLERGIC to many things. My heart rate dropped like a boulder almost as soon as they put the medicine in the IV, and set off the alarms. They already had me hooked up to the monitors, so the doc and nurses were all over me. That was too scary!

    When I was slightly stabilized they sent me to ICU and I was there 28 hrs. I cannot sleep on my back, and I could not sleep for the pain. They wanted to try some new antivenom, but I was so afraid of another anaphylatic reaction, that I refused it. My arm swelled above my elbow. They kept saying they did not want the venom to go to my heart, but I was so afraid of another allergic reaction. It might have, because when I did get home and showered, I noticed the swelling had gone to my armpit and breast and was all black and blue. They had me on a clear liquid diet, YUK. I hate jello--dont do boiled hides, hooves and bones.

    I kept asking for some scrambled eggs and toast. Finally, after they had me in a regular room, I refused my breakfast tray with more liquid junk. Then the doctor finally let me have real food with some scrambled eggs and toast. They sent a surgeon in to see me, because I had a huge purple blood blister on the bitten finger. I finally talked him in to letting me go home around mid morning.

    The surgeon checked my finger a few days later, and the wound had gone necrotic from the poison. I had surgery the next day in the OR to remove the dead tissue. He did it with a local, which was my request. BTW, the local did not deaden the pain much. He wanted to have the means to help me if I were to have a bad reaction to any meds.

    I had to hold my BP meds for over a week because my heart rate and bp was so low and erratic.

    I chose not to use the triple antibiotic salve because I am allergic to some of the ingredients in it. I used A&D ointment instead, and sterile water at first to cleanse the wound. Then I remembered a herb growing in my yard called 'heal-all'. It is prunella vulgaris L officially, and a pretty little plant with blue flowers. I made a tea with it, and used it. Then my wound began healing quicker. Both my regular doc and my surgeon were very happy with how fast it healed up. In eleven days, it had healed nearly 100%. It is still tender and a bit sore, but otherwise very good. I may not even have a scar before long.

    I am very thankful it healed so well, and I can still play the piano and organ.

    The nurses at my doctor's office were all bragging how well it healed. And my doctor told me of several copperhead bites her other patients had, plus about a dozen more bites on patients of other doctors in our area. Be careful if you live in an area with snakes.

    And be careful with your diet, in case you do get injured so it will heal up better.

    auriga1 responded:
    Well, well, well, Ms. Hooty, that is quite a story. Holy moly. First of all, I am certainly glad you are good and healed. How scary is that? Your allergies to meds may have hindered things quite a bit. I brag to my family that I don't have any allergies like they do, you know the typical, spring fever, hay fever, allergies to grass, flowers, trees. We should have stock in allergy meds and tissues. LOL. Every room in the house has a box of tissues.

    I do have allergies, though, to many meds. Nothing to brag about there when you need medicine to clear up an infection, etc. Antibiotics are the worst. The doctors struggle to find something when I become ill. I completely understand your fear of taking any new meds. Keeping informed is very important.

    I had a reaction just like yours when I was bitten by a cat. My neighbor's domestic cat. Bit me on the hand in the fleshy area between the thumb and index finger. Within hours my hand and arm swelled up all the way to my armpit. Then the red streaks appeared indicating a blood infection. Was hospitalized for that one, too. Overnight stay in a hospital for a cat bite.

    It is nice to see you again, Hooty. Sorry you had to go through all that. I know it is so very important to be diligent when it comes to diabetes. Another silent killer, like high blood pressure.
    hootyowl2 replied to auriga1's response:
    Hi Auriga, nice to see you again. There are so many people I do not know on here any more, and I miss the old crowd. I email some of them.

    ANYONE can get allergies, whether or not it is in their families, and no matter how old you are.

    I am glad you got that cat bite treated. Usually, that does not happen with a cat bite, but none of us can see the germs around us. Be sure to thoroughly wash and treat with antiseptics any kind of wound, bite or otherwise.

    I had to get a tetnaus shot while in the ER too.

    High blood pressure is another problem I have, but the meds do nothing much to help it. My blood pressures usually go all over the place.

    Another reason I was scared of the antivenom-- I can no longer take Benadryl because it sends my bp into orbit and drop dead numbers for over a week. And I cannot have epinephrine either. If I have another anaphylatic reaction, I could easily be DEAD. No thanks!

    I hope everyone here takes care of their health as best as they can, including their diabetes.

    auriga1 replied to hootyowl2's response:
    Hooty, there really is no old crowd any longer. Two whom I was close to passed away. Just so sad.

    I do the best I can regarding the diabetes. My mom passed from diabetic complications. In this day and age, no one should really have to die from this disease unless there are mitigating circumstances. Mom was not well-informed and should have been going to a different doctor. She may well have been lying to her phsysican also. You know her numbers must have been very high when her kidneys shut down. Along with amputations and kidney failure, I absolutely knew that is not the road I am going down when I was diagnosed. She was also an insulin-dependent diabetic.

    I have high had high blood pressure since I was 37 that was brought on by pregnancy. It never came down and I have been on corrective meds ever since. My BP med was changed also several times. Already have an enlarged heart due to the high blood pressure.

    The ER physician for the cat bite said cat bites can be the worst. Their teeth are very sharp and the mouth full of bacteria. They also tend to puncture a human's skin deeply sometimes going into the tendons. The hand and wrist are the worst. My whole arm swelled up with reddening of the skin. I had to ice it when I got home and try and keep it elevated. When it started healing, the whole first layer of my skin peeled off. At that point, I didn't even want to know what bacteria caused it, just let me not have to have surgery. IV antibiotics for 12 hours and fill a script for home.

    Hooty, I still like cats. LOL. Prefer dogs, though.
    hootyowl2 replied to auriga1's response:
    It is sad about those who passed away. I do email a few really 'oldies', not that they are that old, but they were here when I first came here back in 2003 when I was first dxd with diabetes. Too many new changes discouraged a lot of us. And some of them are gone that I know of.

    I am glad your cat bite healed up okay, despite the trauma. I have had a few cat bites, but no major infections or complications from them. I have been a cat person and a dog person all of my life. I was partly raised by a German Shepherd. Seriously. She was not ours, but our landlord's dog. No one could raise a hand to me while she was around.

    I had undiagnosed gestational diabetes with my kids back in the 70s, and then symptoms off and on until 03, when it was FINALLY dxd. By then I had high blood pressure, diabetic neuropathy and a few other problems. I try to take good care of myself. Allergies are rampant in my family, as are some other problems like hypertension and heart probs.

    Who passed away? Maybe I knew them too? I know FlashGordon is gone. Nixie is gone. Tom is gone, but I forgot his board name. I still keep in touch with Dnorvell, and Missy and Jane. Sometimes I email Dusty, but have not heard from her in awhile.

    Thanks for caring.

    bigred53 replied to hootyowl2's response:
    Oh Hooty it is wonderful to see you posting. Sorry for what you went through with the snake bite. Scary stuff.

    I used to be shell91710 back in 2006. I miss the 'old timers' too. So much knowledge and good advice. The last I remember is that missy and her husband were going to be retiring. I'm glad you're in contact with her and the others. I really liked Kate too. I learned so much from all of you when I was first starting out on this diabetic journey. I'll never forget David, nixie and the others who have passed. Even though we've never met you all have been a very important part of my life and I am grateful to all of you.

    auriga1 replied to hootyowl2's response:
    Hooty, David Heuben is gone as is Michelle Hall. Michelle valianty fought breast cancer for a few years. She was diagnosed with triple-negative breast cancer, which is the most aggressive breast cancer found. Tried everything under the sun to help her get into remission, including a double mastectomy. She was a trooper and truly one of the nicest people I have ever met. She also used to post here letting everyone know how she was doing. They both have been missed.

    I do know Nixie has been gone for awhile. Glad you are able to keep in touch with some folks.

    Hooty, I had no symptoms whatsoever with the diabetes. There was no excessive thirst or urination. I had always been on the lean side and active. It was such a shocker when I received that diagnosis. I was hospitalized for something else when someone noticed that every morning my FBS was 250 or over. They called in an endo who immediately started me on insulin. My A1c was 13.2. My two insulins have been adjusted back and forth. Still have to watch the carbs diligently. My A1c dropped dramatically when I started a new part-time job. Keeps me running back and forth for 3-4 hours five days a week. With this activity, I have been able to nearly cut my basal insulin in half along with the rapid-acting insulin. I don't even need the Humalog with lunch because my BS is usually in the 60's, sometimes 50's. I just eat and I'm okay.

    Everyone should be moving as much as they can. Your body uses that glucose as fuel when you do move.
    hootyowl2 replied to bigred53's response:
    Hi Michelle,

    I am glad to hear from you. Missy and Hubby are up in Alaska someplace. I hear from her now and then. I remember Kate also. I used to hear from her also, but have not heard from her in several years.

    Diabetes is a strange creature. Some can get it into remission--we were always taught that there is no cure-- and do quite well. Others just cannot seem to get there. I learned more from the Old Timers and this board than I ever did from any of my doctors. You can have it for years, and it will not show up on tests, despite all of the symptoms. By the time you are diagnosed, you have a lot of complications. That was me. Even so, my A1c was not that high at dx because I had been skipping a lot of meals trying to loose some weight. I was not very heavy, but more than I wanted to be. A certain PA did not believe that skipping meals would throw the A1c test though. Long story there, but we parted ways. I was UNDERWEIGHT when I had the gestational diabetes that never was caught. I was small for many years, so it does not always have to do with being overweight. Certain medications made me way overweight, and I have had a terrible time trying to loose the excess weight they caused. I refused to take those meds once I figured out the cause. NO medication is good enough to be worth 50-70 lbs of excess weight! This weight gain was AFTER the diabetes and complications were DX'd.

    Anyhoo, I am glad to see a few folk that I know from before.

    hootyowl2 replied to auriga1's response:
    David Heuben was so strict on his regimen for diabetes too. Wow. I knew Michelle Hall was battling cancer for some time, so she is not really a surprise. Does someone of their friends or family at home notify the forum when they are gone? I keep a list of my forums and passwords and all. I would hope my family would let my online friends know.

    Before they put me on insulin, my A1c test kept getting higher. The pills never helped my blood sugars at all. Since I am on insulin, which was about January 05, I believe, my sugars have leveled off, and usually behave. Sometimes I have a few spikes, but not too major. Before I started the insulins, my sugars were up in the 400 neighborhood. Now they are mostly in the low 100s, or 90s. I cannot handle my sugars in the 50s and 60s, and my doctor does NOT want me so low. It does take awhile to learn how to eat to control one's sugars, and everyone is different in what works for them.

    I do a lot of gardening and walking my dogs for exercise. And keep busy with my church and family. Speaking of whom, my dogs are waiting for their evening walk. Talk to you later. I will try to pop in a bit more often. I need to stop in at several other forums too.

    God bless,

    bigred53 replied to hootyowl2's response:
    I certainly am glad you're still around Hooty. The only thing my doctor told me when I was first diagnosed is no white stuff - bread, rice, potatoes or pasta. I too learned more here than from my doctor.

    What bothers me is so many people want others to do the work for them. I've tried to help different friends but after a while I realize they aren't going to change. They eat whatever they want and just shoot more insulin. A former friend takes the two different insulins and three oral diabetic meds. I'd be surprised if her bs was ever below 200. On the occasion I overdo it about freaks me out if I get that high.

    I'll keep trying to help others but it's up to them to do the work. I'm glad I listened and learned from you and others. I'm still learning.

    hootyowl2 replied to bigred53's response:
    Insulin is NOT an excuse to eat whatever you want to eat. A treat sometimes is one thing, but to always be eating bad stuff is not good.

    I eat whole grain breads, rarely any white bread. Yuk. I do eat some potatoes or pasta, but not in the same meal as bread. And have veggies and protiens with it. Fruits are good, but you have to experiment a bit to see how much of them you can eat or not. I eat very little meat, as I am mostly vegetarian. Then I am allergic to soy also... Between being a picky eater, and allergies, and medical needs, it is hard to decide what to eat at times. This time of year, I just do not feel like eating much of anything. The heat bothers me a lot.

    Some seem very careless with their diets. I think if they came to a place like here, they might learn better.

    My doctor says I am her best diabetic patient. Her nurses were bragging about how well my hand had healed up, and so fast too. She told me that 'whatever you are doing for your hand, to keep doing it.' She knows I kind of do my own thing with wound care. Now, if I could just get my triglycerides down, my numbers would be about perfect. She had had me on Niaspan, but I had a very bad reaction to it also... It didnt really work for me anyway. I cannot take any of those cholesterol pills for medical reasons. With my allergies, I am NOT trying anything new here.

    As long as we are learning, and trying to do better, that is a good thing.

    good nite. I need some sleep here.

    bigred53 replied to hootyowl2's response:
    Hello everyone. Hooty I have a problem with triglycerides too. Although I don't have your problems with allergies I have had some side effects especially with statins. I'm currently taking Zetia and Trilipix. The Zetia costs too much and the side effects of the Trilipix are building up. It backs up my internal plumbing. I think I eat plenty of fiber and I know I drink enough water and other liquids. I haven't made any major changes to my diet or the supplements I take so to my mind it's the med. So frustrating.

    I've taken fish oil, flaxseed oil and many other supplements that are supposed to lower triglycerides and cholesterol. I've been reading about walnut oil. I'm going to give that a try. What the hell, right?

    My last A1c was 5. 6 and both my doctor and I are very pleased with that. My blood pressure is good without meds but I'm sure that's mostly due to weight loss. The weight is coming off slowly but steadily and it's getting easier for me to eat right and resist those life long temptations. I still have my moments. Other than age related aches and pains life is good.

    auriga1 replied to hootyowl2's response:
    Hooty, so true, so true. Each to their own, I suppose. There should be no complaining if one is not compliant. As you stated here, diabetes is a chronic disease that does not go away. Yes, it does go into remission when one is compliant.

    I work with seniors many of which who have diabetes. I would say half do watch what they eat, the other half not at all. They see me and wonder why I am not overweight. I told them I am very careful in what I eat and always on the go. I ask them what their A1c is. The answer from every one of them is "what's that?" Don't they ask? Amazing to me how they just do as they are told and don't wonder how things work. How to keep things under control? Right now I am just shaking my head.

    I use insulins to keep my diabetes under control. As you said, it is not an excuse to eat anything you want. I have a deliberate plan of action to keep my toes, feet, kidneys, eyesight, etc. etc.

    Hope you got plenty of rest, Hooty. I did. LOL.
    bigred53 replied to auriga1's response:
    Auriga you and Hooty are so right about not using insulin as an excuse to eat whatever you want and just shoot more insulin. My former friend would say she couldn't lose weight because of the insulin. I should have been more honest with her and said 'no it's because of how much you eat'. She's Hispanic and had to have mounds of rice and tortillas with almost every meal. Everything I ever tried to tell her she had an excuse for. She'd tell me I didn't understand how hard it is to lose weight. Give me a break. I do know and I have. Basically so many people are down right lazy about their health. She almost lost her left big toe because she didn't check her feet. She blamed it on neuropathy - she couldn't feel it. Duh! That's why you have to look.

    Well now I've gotten myself angry and I'd like to go give her a good swift kick.

    auriga1 replied to bigred53's response:
    Don't blame you, Michelle, for the kick. LOL. Swift kick on top of that.

    Insulin does bring the blood sugar number down. The other side of this is that the glucose is still in your body being stored as fat if you do not move. When you eat right and excercise daily, this glucose is being used as fuel for your muscles. I have a job in which I am constantly moving and using many of my muscles. This keeps my blood glucose where it should be. I don't even have to use my rapid-acting insulin with my lunch-time meal.

    It is much harder to lose weight than it is to gain it. All you have to do is eat and eat and not move and, bingo, excess weight. Does not even take long either.

    Rice. What can I say. Basically tasteless unless you add "stuff." 1/3 cup rice = 15 grams carbs. Put 1/3 cup of cooked rice on your plate and it appears if you have two forkfuls. "Ooops. That's not enough so let us pile on some more." All of a sudden you have your version of a serving of rice and you are eating 60 grams of carbs in one side alone.

    You got me started now. Better stop. I can be one of the worst preachers ever regarding food and diabetes. I've done it at work. Most welcome it, but I soon start to feel like I've overstepped my bounds.

    Now back to kicking.......

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