my diabetes kit, the grumpy pumper




We can't tell you

his real name

as that would

be breaking

protocol, and

we'd hate to blow his cover. This is the

Grumpy Pumper, who has had Type

I diabetes since 1994 when he was

diagnosed at age 25.

Looking back he says, "I'm lucky I had

25 years without it, but I do remember

my diagnosis really well as it happened

on an August bank holiday in 1995. As

early as May of that year my brother-inlaw had said, 'have you lost weight?' I

didn't think much about it at the time. I've

always drunk a lot of tea, water and so

on, so that was not unusual. But I kept

losing weight. I was eating more in order

to try and put it back on. I felt tired all the

time and was eating things like Mars bars

drinking Lucozade for extra energy. I felt

terrible though. Back then there was no

internet, no Dr Google to refer to. The only

thing I had to look at was my mum's home

medical reference book, so I looked up

diabetes and thought, 'yup'."

Did he dash off to the doctors? "Being

a typical bloke, and being busy, I put off

going to the GP. But I'm 6'2" and was

losing a few pounds a day; by the time

I hit 10.5st I really was pretty skinny. One

day I scared myself by nearly nodding off

at the wheel. Realising I could really hurt

someone I took myself off to the doctors.

He did tests and told me to come back

in a week. I went home and then he rang

continued over

and said to come in tomorrow, which

was a Saturday. He told me, 'you have

diabetes'. There was no mention of what

type of diabetes, he phoned the hospital

and got me a bed. I picked up a bag from

home and went in. I thought I was never

going to be allowed chocolate again, so I

stopped off and bought a bar before I got

there. I came out the following Thursday

after they had stabilised me. I only realised

how ill I had been once I started to feel


Grumpy left the hospital with basic kit

and information. He says, "I was given

disposable syringes and a needle clipping

device called Safe Clip. I had an old BD

meter, I can even remember that it was

optical -- you had to clean the lens. I think

it was called Refloflux; it took 15 seconds

to countdown. I was also given some

food information based on carbohydrate

exchanges, such as one digestive biscuit

was one carbohydrate exchange. I was

told to eat three times a day and to have

a snack in between meals."

Analyse this

Grumpy started a bit of basic analysis of

his blood test results. "At that point I was

only really logging my blood test results,

not really managing the control. I got by

eating as normal and testing. I used a

diary, at least I filled it in, but other than

that I didn't look at it much. I remember

my first hypo though. It took a while

before I had one, it was months after I'd

left the hospital. I was underneath the

kitchen worktop -- I was fitting it into the

house we'd just bought. I felt strange,

did a blood test, and I think I took some

dextrose tablets. I was prepared -- I had

some to hand even though I'd not had a

hypo yet. Again, I was rather glad once

I'd had it; now I knew what I was dealing


How does he treat his hypos today?

"These days I use about half a bottle of

Lucozade. There's always a bottle in my

car or in my bag although when I'm at

home I'll eat whatever's to hand. I travel

a lot and I always test before I drive. I'm

often driving with my kids or with other

people in the car, so I want to take proper

care. Also, I can't work if I can't drive and

I don't want to lose my license, so I just

test before I set off then do another test

two hours later if it's a long journey."

Although he might go by the name

The Grumpy Pumper, in fact he's quite

sanguine about his diabetes "I'm still not

frightened by my diabetes nor am I angry

about it. It happened. I was 25, had a

job, and was about to get married; it was


Today, Grumpy has a reputation

for being a bit of a curmudgeon when

blogging about diabetes. Put simply, he

just thinks things could be better and he

thinks that a lot of technology isn't as

good as it should be. For example, he's

tried CGM but does not think he needs to


  1. Page 0001
  2. Abbott Freestyle Libre, Flash Glucose Monitoring, blood testing without lancets
  3. Sue Marshall, The Grumpy Pumper, Desang Diabetes Magazine, hypos, DRWF, Diabetes UK, CGM, the full s
  4. DRWF, diabetes news, Adocia insulin, Type 2 diabetes
  5. Sanofi diabetes care, diabetes highs and lows
  6. Page 0006
  7. Diabetes Risk Score, Professor Khunti, Leicester Diabetes Centre
  8. diabetes kit
  9. Medtronic diabetes insulin pump, Medtronic Minimed 640G, and Medtronic Enlite CGM,
  10. Desang diabetes magazine diabetes diet
  11. diabetic diet, carbs and cals, Chris Cheyette and Yello Baliola
  12. Page 0012
  13. National Institute of Medical Herbalists
  14. my diabetes kit, the grumpy pumper
  15. my diabetes kit, the grumpy pumper
  16. my diabetes kit, the grumpy pumper, insulin pump, Animas Vibe, Dexcom
  17. Ascensia Contour Diabetes blood test meters
  18. my diabetes kit, the grumpy pumper, insulin pump, Animas Vibe, Dexcom
  19. Page 0019
  20. Page 0020
  21. Page 0021
  22. Sue Marshall, closed loop insulin pump, artificial pancreas, CGM
  23. artificial insulin pump, bionic bi-hormonal pump
  24. artificial insulin pump, Medtronic 640g insulin pump
  25. Bionic pancreas Edward Damiano, Steven Russell, Firas El-Khatib, Boston University
  26. Agamatrix Wavesense Jazz Wireless, blood test meter and app
  27. artificial insulin pump, bionic pancreas, CGM, type 1 diabetes, Type 2 diabetes
  28. Page 0028
  29. Medtronic diabetes insulin pump, Medtronic Minimed 640G, and Medtronic Enlite CGM,
  30. Chris Chapman GlucoRx, type 2 diabetes, blood test meters
  31. Chris Chapman GlucoRx,
  32. Making Carbs Count pseudograins
  33. Making Carbs Count pseudograins
  34. Accu-Chek Insight insulin pump
  35. Page 0035
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