I continue to be amazed…

I am still using Symlin, and most of the time I am absolutely amazed at how well it works for me.

It can be quite complicated, and sometimes downright scary, but when all of the circumstances line up such that I feel safe using it, my jaw just simply drops at how well it can help me manage my blood sugars (and appetite).

I am going to be writing more about Symlin over the next few weeks, and I would like to gather some information from you:

  • How many of you know what Symlin is and how it is used?
  • How many of you are using it? How is it working for you?
  • How many of you have used it, but quit, and why?
  • How many of you are interested in trying it, but are either a bit scared of it, or can’t convince your caregiver to prescribe it?

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14 thoughts on “I continue to be amazed…

  1. Scott
    I have used Symlin for over 2 years and find it absolutely essential to “flatten out” my post-meal highs. As has been said, it is a powerful (sometimes scary!) tool, but it has helped lower my A1c nearly 1%. I would NOT use it if I didn’t wear a CGM (Dex) because I can watch my BG closely and grab a coupla glucose tabs if it “heads South” too rapidly. Typically, though, I can keep my BG under 150 (instead of 250-300+) with little problem.
    With a pump, CGM & Symlin I have managed to maintain very tight control of my BG, but it is a LOT of work – I find I consult my Dex every 10 – 20 min. and make bolus/snack decisions very frequently. Thank God my insurance covers all this! This is an expensive pursuit, needless to say.

  2. Scott, I have used Symlin off and on over several years with mixed results.
    The one thing that I will say about it is that it can be very effective in lowering post-meal bg levels. But it must be used carefully, or else! A couple of times early on, I had VERY scary lows that were hard to shake, and both times I stopped

  3. I have read alot about Symlin and honestly, I am scared to think of trying it becuase of the horror stories of inflicted lows! I think it would be extremely beneficial for many people (teens in our support group) as far as hunger control though.

  4. Hi Scott,
    I’d love to give Symlin a try, and have wanted to for a long time, but it isn’t licensed or available in the UK. I used to feel really frustrated by its unavailability, but reading of so many people who’ve given up has made me think maybe it isn’t so great. But then, lots of people give up on CGM, and I’m still hooked two and a half years in! I’m interested to hear your full evaluation of Symlin, even if it might make me jealous!
    P.S Waiting patiently for the test strips!!!

  5. Hi Scott, glad it is working so well for you! Sometimes I think just having a new tool rather than the same old, same old, is helpful. As for me, I’m not planning to try Symlin. One of my D “issues” is fear of lows, and the thought of making them more likely and harder to fix just scares me.

  6. I had tried it for several months when it first came out. No problems with nausea, etc – I just noticed that instead of peaking at 250 or so 90 min after a meal, I was peaking at 400 three to four hours after a meal. That, plus that was about when Mr Thyroid went berzerk and I decided to wait on Symlin until we’d killed him off.
    In the meantime I’ve switched from Novolog to Apidra and have seen better post-meal reactions, so now I’m not sure Symlin is worth the extra aggravation…
    I may do it again at some point, but right now I’m in the midst of another random-hormone storm, so I will wait until my typical reactions are just slightly more predictable again….

  7. I don’t know much about Symlin. Just that it works in conjunction with insulin to give tighter control. I am interested in learning more about it, my endo told me a little about it but decided I didn’t need it at this time because my A1c’s were pretty tight.

  8. I’m glad you’re polling people, I’ve been really curious about what the other Symlin users are doing.
    I really loved it at first, had little problem adjusting to it and little nausea, and used it (mostly for breakfast) for about a year. But over time it gradually made less and less difference in my postmeal control, and the satiety effect that I really appreciated at first faded completely. I took several months off of it and just this month am trying it again. I always found it challenging in terms of avoiding lows: I can only use it if I have NO insulin on board, my basals are not too high, and I haven’t been low in the last few hours, otherwise I end up very low and stuck that way! Given all that, it seems like I can only permit myself to use it about a third of the time for breakfast and even more rarely at other meals. Also, I can still easily end up with some nasty post-Symlin spikes 3 hours later if I don’t bolus perfectly for the carbs and get the extended-bolus timing right.
    It’s been a tricky ride. I wish it was easier, it has such potential to help postmeal control, but I haven’t worked it all out as well as I had hoped.
    Hey, are you still wearing two pumps, or are you injecting Symlin?

  9. I used Symlin for about 2 years. I went off of it when I got my pump as my blood sugars came under excellent control pretty fast. In April it will be a year since I started pumping and my A1C has been in the 5’s since I started with the pump. I always have the option of going back on it if I need to gain tighter control. When I first started I had to premedicate myself so that I could keep the food down. Once my body adjusted to it I was fine.

  10. I’m glad you’re writing about Symlin. I know very little about it and am curious how it works with the rest of your plan. I am ready for my ignorance to be chipped away. 🙂

  11. I would LOVE to try Symlin but I’m not sure any of my doctors will go for it. I’m going to bring it up the next time we talk, but judging by the way they react to most things they will give me this big long explanation about why they won’t prescribe it to me 🙁 We’ll see