I was very fortunate to receive an islet cell transplant last month. I have been working on writing a blog about the experience and would like to share it with anyone who is interested in learning more about this option.
Here is the address http://kathy-mynewislets.blogspot.com

I am doing well and the islets are beginning to work.

I welcome any questions or comments,

Kathy

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Well I have seen it with some type 1's, even a little bit on here, but mostly other places. It's only type 2, you just need to lose weight, etc. Mostly on here I have seen people who are NOT like that, only every once in a while I get a hint of it.

We know we need to lose the weight. All this extra insulin makes it really hard. :( I wish there was a way I could take out some of my insulin and donate it to a t1!
That is interesting that you would ask that. It does feel different. I still consider myself to be diabetic. I still am on insulin and have to worry about the lows, but something is definitely different and I assume will become even more so. Being a brittle diabetic was such a big part of my life, that I won't feel exactly like myself, at least for awhile. But, once I do feel normal again, that will be a good thing. I already feel that a tremendous weight has been lifted. I can now control my blood sugar levels for the first time in many years. It is no longer a big losing battle.
Have you thought of having some counselling sessions? I know that when people lose a lot of weight they often need counselling to re-shape their self-image. I would imagine it is similar for someone who suddenly doesn't have a chronic illness anymore.
I dont think that will be necessary. It has been such a positive experience that I just think that I can coast into my new identity.
That's so awesome! I can see this surgery becoming extremely viable especially if they figure out how to make islet cells from other cells, like in Danny's article. Maybe not for us, but for our kids. Maybe from the placental cord blood. Or maybe they could take some of my islets (since I still have them) and save them for when they can teach them to replicate.
My Doctor friend said his transplanted collegue eventually felt as ressurected. I have never died and ressurected but I can see that this could be quite a positive experience.
It is a positive experience. I had forgotten what it is like to feel this good.
Hi Kathy,

I thought about an islet cell transplant but instead I went with the pancreatic transplant after 6 years of hell as a type 1. I no longer take insulin or any other diabetes meds. I do take anti-rejection drugs but I have no side effects. I feel fabulous and will be returning to work as soon as I find a job. It's tough because I'm a drug rep and there just aren't any jobs out there right now. Good luck with the islet cell transpant!
Colleen
Hi Colleen,
I am glad to hear that your transplant was so successful. It sure is nice to feel good again, isn't it?
Hi I am so glad I came across your Discussion on the net. I first enquiried about an islet transplant back in 2001 but was unsuccessful. I have had type 1 diabeties for 28 years now and have just been asked to try the islet transplant again. I am excited about it but also very scared, if the transplant does not work I will end up where I started, but if it does work I am worried about the anti-rejection medication which to me is more of a problem than the diabeties. What is your thought on this I also have a beautiful daughter who I would like to see grow up and have a mother there with her.
Great to hear I have just read you blog, I am very interest in you progress as I have been asked to take part in the islet transplant at Westmead Hospital Sydney AUSTRALIA. Although like you I have to do the test to see if I am suitable to participate in the program. I am not on the pump although I hope that would be an option if I do not qualify for the transplant. I go for my first lot of tests on the 13th of October 2008 the tests go for two days then I see the Doc for the end results. Excited but scared at the same time. As I have watched my father have the first Pancreas and Kidney transplant at Westmead unfortunately this only lasted a couple of years until my dad pasted away. I am only 38yrs so that is not old plus I have a wonderful husband who has supported me for the last 20years with my diabetes and I have a 10.5 yr old daughter who I hope to be around for the next 40 years or so.
Hi,
I am quite happy with my decision for the islet cell transplant. I am not insulin independent yet, but still hope to be eventually. I am down to 6 units/day. The immunosuppressive drugs so far, have not been bad at all. It is a concern to know that my white count is so low, but I havent had any serious side effects yet, just some mouth sores which went away. My husband was sick with the flu or something like it last weekend, and I fortunately did not get it. I won't know for sure how my new immune status will be until I have gone through the cold and flu season, but so far so good. It seems like there is a lot going on right now with islet cell transplantation. So make sure your center is having good results. They should all be the same, but they don't seem to be.

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