From Cincinnati, Ohio, USA:
My six year old son was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes 8 months ago. We recently purchased our first home computer and I am very interested in trying some of the software available for diabetes data management. Are there any programs available that support manual entry of data? I don't want to change the monitor we use since it is very simple and my son has mastered checking his own glucose with this meter. Unfortunately this meter won't download data to a computer.
I'm also interested in learning about any educational computer software for school age children. My son really retained a lot of information from the short video we received from the hospital when he was first diagnosed.
I know he would love anything resembling a computer game.
There are many diabetes management computer programs for a variety of computer platforms. All support manual entry of blood sugar values, so a link to your meter is not required. It just saves you some time. I happen to like Balance Diabetes Software, since it includes both blood sugar management and recipe analysis capabilities. You can type the list of ingredients for any recipe and the software will computer nutritional information, including carbohydrates and exchanges. Plus it's very easy to use.
There is one well-known game for kids with diabetes: Captain Novolin, for SuperNintendo. Another game is Packy & Marlon Health Hero Video Game about Diabetes.
Additional Comments from Linda Mackowiak, diabetes nurse specialist:I would also add that there are some books available such as The Dinosaur Tamer. These stories would be great to read to your child.
For the parents, it is fine to use whatever helps you to recognize patterns in the diabetes. Some people prefer computers, others use paper charts and highlighters to see patterns in blood sugars based on food, exercise, etc. Make sure you can see patterns by time of day, so that you know which insulin to change.
Original posting 2 Aug 97
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