My 25 year old son has had Type 1 for 17 + years. He is currently using a DexCom and short and long insulin using pens. He and I are hiking to Macchu Picchu, a 4 day hike, in a few weeks and I am looking for tips and learnings we can prepare for instead of learning them on our own. We will have back up meters, batteries, glucagon pens, extra carbs. How might altitude affect sugars? How will altitude affect his DexCom? What are we missing? Anyone with any experience and tips would be greatly appreciated.
@maryomeara hi Mary, first of all I hope you enjoy this trip it sounds amazing.
Walking for 4 days will most likely require less basal insulin. Do you have a game plan for using less long acting insulin?
Peru has tropical/typical issues (drinking water, potential exposures to parasites) so a plan for drinking water and an emergency plan for travelers “sickness “ typically debilitating diarrhea, might be an idea. That region has issues with yellow fever and other really fun stuff so I would check in with a knowledgeable doctor for some tips and maybe some precautionary shots (hep a, etc).
Safe travels and take a lot of pictures!
Thanks. He will be cutting back on his basal insulin. I have antidiarrheal drugs in case it hits hard.
Hiya Mary, I did the two day Inca Trail to Macchu Picchu back in 2001. I can tell you, some of it has pretty significant climbing. My BG goes down with altitude and heat. Plus, it’s a lot of hiking. If he isn’t used to that level of activity, that can lower sugars more so. I’ve not heard of CGM issues with altitude, but call the helpline and ask them. I’d definitely cut the basal down, and correct with short acting if he needs it. Bring easy to carry carbs. When I was down there, there was some issues with bandits on the trail, so I hid some insulin and a few syringes in a money belt that was under my pants. Didn’t have any trouble, but it was peace of mind that I had what I needed. Enjoy the views! It was one of the best things I’ve ever done!
Oh, yeah. Us pasturized, homogenized, irradiated food eating Americans were the only ones to get sick from the food. We all ate the same thing and we had people from all of the world in our group. Not fun, but not too bad.