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Jane Bennett

Jane Bennett was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes exactly one week from her 31st birthday.  She experienced all the classic symptoms: excessive thirst, frequent urination, constantly hungry despite eating a lot, and still losing weight.  As a physical therapist, she “knew it was diabetes, and called my PCP.”  Two days later Jane was in the UMass Memorial ER with blood sugars over 500, and D.K.A.   She spent Friday through Sunday in the hospital, where she learned all about her “new normal.”   The diagnosis was overwhelming, and the new terminology and information were very difficult to digest all at once. 

The following Wednesday, she and her husband flew to Las Vegas for a planned birthday vacation.  Jane was terrified, but packed her meter, glucose tabs, and insulin supplies, and headed to a different time zone where they ate out at restaurants every night.

Jane was advised by her PCP to see Dr. Richard Haas at the UMass DCOE.  She had been trying to get pregnant, and was told to stop, until she could get her A1c from 15% to below 7%.  That was all the motivation she needed.  Dr. Haas strongly recommended that she begin using an insulin pump, to help get her glucose under control.  Within 6 months, her A1c was down to 7…and she was able to get pregnant right away!

“I love Dr. Haas,” she said.  “He calmed me down and assured me I can have a baby and live a normal life with diabetes.”  She appreciates how much time he spends with each patient and how he always responds to her calls and emails in a timely manner.  “He called me every week during my pregnancy.”

Using a pump and continuous glucose monitor (CGM), Jane eventually brought her A1c down to 5.2%.   For nearly 8 years she has stayed between 5.2 – 6.1%.  Today, her 7 year old son and 4 year old daughter are her motivation to ensure she does everything in her power to stay healthy.  “I weigh and measure all of my food and I use the MyFitnessPal App to count carbs and manage my weight.”  She looks forward to the latest technology to come out.

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