Baseball bats, Charles Atlas, and drunken rodeo clowns: Modern medicine for diabetes

More LifeAfterDx–CGM Chronicles Aug 18, 2011, 10:58 pm

The drawing, I confess, is worse than pathetic.

My student taps part of the doodle with her pen, “So this is the liver, right?”

Ah. No. That’s the pancreas. The liver’s over there.

“Oh,” she says. “I thought that was the stomach.” A pause. “I’m just not quite getting this yet.”

My drawing, clearly, is not helping. On the sheet of copy paper, crudely sketched in red ink, is my pathetic attempt at depicting the elegant internal structure of the human body. Yeah, Andreas Vesalius I’m not. I mean I know what I want my illustrations to look like, but they never turn out that way.

I’m teaching a class on insulin to the Promotoras at a neighboring clinic. We’ve gotten off on a tangent about other diabetes meds that need needles. I gaze at the mess I’ve drawn. A bubbly-edged blob, on the right, is supposed to be the pancreas. It looks more like a thought balloon from the Sunday funnies. Next to it is a basketball that was run over by a FedEx truck. Right. That was intended to be the stomach. Below that is a snake that was run over by the same FedEx truck. You got it. The small intestines. Off to the left is a much, much larger pathetic sketch that was intended to be the liver. It doesn’t help that in the interest of anatomical accuracy I’ve tried to draw in all the lobes. Running down the middle is a winding road that’s the esophagus. On the top, a large open triangle. The mouth.

There are various sweeping arrows connecting this train wreck, and strange nonsense words litter the page, “GLP-1,” “DPP-4,” “counter-reg,” and “ins.”

Geesh. No wonder she’s just not quite getting this yet.

I decide to give up on the drawing and fall back on my real strengths: Words. Story telling. Analogy.

So I made up this little tale (embellished slightly for the web):

OK, I say, let’s pretend it’s first thing in the mor … Read the Rest

Tags: over, drawing, right, pathetic, diabetes, i’ve, fedex, truck, words, intended, i’m, stomach, that’s, liver, pancreas, thought, quite, getting,