Vaccine Booster Shot

Long post ahead. Bear with me!

I have been utterly frustrated and angry with how high my blood sugars have been here lately. I got the booster shot (3rd dose of Pfizer) last Saturday (Oct 2nd) and was fine with a sore arm. As of Monday (Oct 5th) to today, I’ve had the worst time getting my blood sugars down. I am thinking my booster shot had something to do with stressing my body out. I say this because the first two doses caused me no problems with blood sugar and neither did the flu shot. I’ve noticed that an hour to 2 hours after meal, I am steadily rising between 250 and 300. It seems dangerous to eat and already be at 250, but I can’t help it. I do pre-bolus as well. I only know about going high so quick after a meal because my lovely FreeStyle Libre2 likes to alert me. I have begun to hate the Libre2 because I JUST started using it. I’ve been trying to contact endocrinologist with not a lot of luck but I’ve contacted my pharmacists from where I received the shot. If my blood sugars don’t straighten up by tomorrow after meals, I’m reporting it to the CDC because I’m tired of this. It’s like my immune system is fighting the booster. I seem to have GOOD blood sugars when I have not eaten for a long period of time, but it has only been under 200 four times since Monday. If I would have known the booster would affect my blood sugars, I probably would have thought twice about getting it. I know by tomorrow if it hasn’t bettered itself, I may need my ratios changed, but that part scares me. My ratios for breakfast and lunch are already 8.5:1 and dinner is 9.5:1. I won’t eat over 40 carbs a meal and if my blood sugar is high, my carbs lessen. Has this happened to anyone else and if so, how long did the highs last? I’ve become to think my body has become insulin resistant.

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Hi @hanstan . I haven’t had my booster yet - thank you for sharing your experience. One thing I’ve found when I’m over 300 (my number - it may not be yours) is that those numbers won’t even start to come down until I wash any ketones out of my system. A couple of hours after a couple of glasses of water and I start to see a very slow drop that increases over time. I’m not discounting what you’ve shared - I hope it helps get your numbers back in line.

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I honestly thought it was my pod and insulin at first, but I realized that was not the case. I have only checked for ketones twice and once I had small. The other time I had negative, which was a relief. I just hope things get better because I miss my snacks.

I understand. TBH when my numbers are that high I assume I have ketones and may not even check (not a good practice but I’m being honest here) but start downing water. You might think about increasing your basal rate/s temporarily. I find that even just a tenth of a unit can make a big difference but if course it varies from person to person; and if you have different rates throughout the day it may or may not be necessary to change all. You probably know this but sometimes I like to put in a “disclaimer” for the sake of people who may be less experienced. So please forgive me if I’m telling you what your already know.
I hope things settle down soon!

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Yes, I am guilty of doing the same thing! Sometimes, I’d rather not know if I have them or not, so I’d rather just start downing water. I can tell it when my mouth is dry! Also, I just spoke with my endocrinologist and her nurse. They told me they just found out Type 1’s are experiencing these highs after meals for 7-10 days. Instead of changing their insulin ratios, they were told to add 5 carbs to the meal and see if that helps normalize it. If I start dropping low from adding 5 carbs, I will then only add 3 carbs. We shall see how things play out, but I am just ready to get back to normal! Thank you for the advice. I sure do appreciate it!

Always glad to share my thoughts but I’m glad you got instructions from your team. Keep us posted!

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Hannah @hanstan , I can relate to you in trying, without success, to get your BGL back to a more normal level. I haven’t yet had a “booster” [I had Moderna] , but thanks for the heads-up for later.

Have you had any virus symptoms that may be affecting your BG? I’ve experienced my BG locked at levels higher than 500 for a few days [non-diabetes related infections] and the only way I could get back to my "normal was rapid-acting insulin every two hours and heavy anti-bacteria infusions anti-bacteria may not work for you if your high glucose is caused by virus reaction.

Don’t get sidetracked by lack of ketones which are bi-product of your body breaking itself down for feeding, with hyperglycemia - two different things. Even with my BGL over 500 for three days I did not produce ketone because I continued to eat - small meals.

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Hi @hanstan sorry to hear you are having a tough time. I had my booster months ago and nothing happened to my blood sugar.

Anyway I would listen to your doctors. When I have a prolonged high I boost my basal rate to 130%, and I use a lower carb ratio (for increased meal insulin). I also add exercise it is very good for insulin resistance as well as inflammation (for me). Hang in there. :four_leaf_clover:

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Like everyone else, I’m glad you’re getting guidance from your medical team! I only wanted to chime in to let you know not to be afraid of tighter insulin:carb ratios, if that’s what you and your team decide you need. Just for reference, my daughter’s on 1:5 at breakfast and 1:6 otherwise, because that’s what she needs right now. And remember, if you had functioning beta cells, they would deliver however much you needed and you’d never even know how much it was.

So try not to get hung up on the numbers needing to change. They do that, and it’s a good thing. It’s kind of a macabre way to think about it, but if you never changed, you’d be dead. :wink:

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Highs are very frustrating to all of us and I think it’s mainly because they take much longer to correct. We all, in this country mainly, want things now. A low you can fix pretty easy and you can see glucose rise in less than 30 minutes. I had a new kind of pizza last night and started eating it low and by the time it was 11pm I was at 315. It did come down through the night with a couple of every 3 hr corrections and I was at 118 this morning. So I say it is not the booster. Most likely your fear that it could be the booster. Our brain is very powerful and if we get something in our mind it will affect glucose. I can be at 85 one minute and an hr with my brother in law I am close to 300. So Pizza and my Brother in Law I try to avoid!!


hanstan, I’m bringing the voice of a different way of looking at the subject. People often dismiss my way of looking at things, because it doesn’t fit with the modern, standard way of approaching the subject. But after 47 years, I’ve picked up a few pointers.

As we know, there are a myriad of things that affect our BGL, some under our control and some not. But there is at least one that is outside our direct control, but we can have an affect on it. And that one is stress.

When we are stressed in any way, be it physical, psychological or emotional, our body enters fight-or-flight mode. And one of the things it does is adjust BGL ready for either a fight or flight, along with all sorts of other things like adrenalin etc. The person who says they understand how all of these things affect each other is kidding themselves.

Worrying about your BGL “spiking” is causing you stress, otherwise you wouldn’t have written this post. So it could be simply a case of you are worried about your BGL, so in consequence your BGL goes up.

I don’t mean to sound like I’m belittling your concern; you have every right to be concerned. But just be aware that your concern may be affecting your level.

As an indication of why I’m no longer on Facebook, I don’t use a pump, CGM or anything to do with bluetooth except music, and that was simply not acceptable to the people in the Facebook groups. I test, have my 4 injections per day and monitor my food and exercise. Life is simple and there’s minimum reason for stress about my T1. At my last visit with the endo, he told me that my HBA1C was a bit low, so I need to be aware of that.

Go figure, eh? But don’t tell that to the people in the Facebook groups, because they simply won’t believe you.

Hi @alex_of_oz . Just want to say I do understand your way of looking this.

Worrying about your BGL “spiking” is causing you stress, otherwise you wouldn’t have written this post. So it could be simply a case of you are worried about your BGL, so in consequence your BGL goes up.

What your describe is a self fulfilling prophecy - in this case where stress over blood sugar rising, is (or may be) what causes it to rise. Actually I believe I do understand how the factors you listed affect each other at least theoretically - although since science was not my strong suit (hoo boy!) the mechanics eludes me.
Congratulations on disconnecting from a group that wasn’t supportive. Call me naive when I say I’m surprised to hear that - but you’re proof positive that a person should do what works for them and forget the nay-sayers. I use Tandem with Control IQ but do believe it’s valuable and important to know how to “go old school” as well (if that term bothers you I’ll just say I’m approaching 60 years with Type 1😊 and leave it at that).
Looking forward to more of your thoughts and wisdom on the forum - hopefully you’ll find this group more accepting and open then your one on FB.

Hi wadawabbit. Bugs was the best, wasn’t he.

60 years with T1. I take my hat off to you. And I’m not new to this group. I have been contributing since before my trek across The Sahara back in 2010. But my experience on Facebook has sincerely disrupted my point of view about support groups. You either fit the mould or you are cyber-bullied. Not very supportive in my mind.

And when you say “old school”, I understand what you are saying. And if understanding how many grams of carbohydrate is contained in an apple or a piece of toast is old school, then I’m proud to wear the badge. I’m mean, seeing as our life depends on knowing if we have enough carbohydrate on board to go to the bank without collapsing, and without whipping out a bluetooth reader of some sort and reading what our BGL is down to the 0.1, then I prefer to be old school.

But shhhhhh, don’t say that on any one of many Facebook groups. You’ll be labelled first as anti-tech, funny when you consider I’ve worked with computers for almost 40 years, then as a trouble maker.

With regards to the original post, I sympathise with the poster. I used to try to help people understand that living with T1 is like a non-stop game of juggling 3 balls - insulin / food / exercise-rest-stress. But in this plugged in world where people aren’t even taught about how many grams of carbohydrate are contained within a piece of toast or piece of cheese, means that my efforts were met with a polite blank face, leading to a turned head, and finishing with a receding back.

So I pretty much keep my own counsel now, and offer tid-bits if the opportunity arises.

I must say again, congratulations on your 60 years. I hope I get to that point. You and I know just how many steps that requires.

Apologies for not recognizing you from previous posts - it can be hard to keep track and I will try to make a note of your words of wisdom based on your years of experience, trial and error (and error) resulting in funding what works best for you.
I’m surprised - no stunned - that people aren’t being taught carb counting: it’s so foundational! Did I read wrong or misunderstand? I hope it’s something about the people on the FB group and not an overall thing. Wow.
When I switched doctors a couple of years ago one of the first things she did was have me see a nutritionist. It may have been due diligence on her part; or maybe she wanted someone to evaluate what I knew (or thought I did😊). Frankly I find it helpful to get a refresher now and then - you can do things by rote for so long you can forget why you do it and even the fine points of how do it was good to get a “tune-up” so again, Wow.
Apologies - like the great philosopher Sophia Petrillo of Golden Girls fame, I digress. Keep juggling!

wadawabbit, no need to apologise.

Yes, it was one of the things I learned from my foray into FB groups, that it is not 100% common any more for newly diagnosed to be taught what we now call “carb counting”. To you and I, it is just second nature, but to newbies, not necessarily so much. I too was stunned, but it was confirmed by a fellow T1 at work when I mentioned it to him.
Another thing that I find very disappointing is that when I was diagnosed back in '74, it was standard, here in Oz at least, for the newly diagnosed to spend a week in hospital, where they were taught about injections, insulin, good nutrition etc. During this time they purposely brought on a hypo, so I had first hand experience of what it felt like.

I didn’t like it and was quite shocked.

But today, again here in Oz, a stay in hospital is not standard. It is now more a case of here’s your needles, here’s your pen, here’s your insulin, here’s some pamphlets on nutrition for a T1, and here’s a pat on your bum to send you on your way. Then all responsibility for any followup sits first with the patient and second with the family doctor or endo. And to paraphrase someone we all know, the “helpful” people in the Facebook groups don’t know what they don’t know, and think that I’m making it up.
While I have the floor, and fully aware that it is primarily USA’ians on this forum, you guys really have to do something about what you pay for insulin. I know that you think it’s normal for it to work like you have it, with the plethora of who-pays-for-what and battling with your health insurance provider, but it’s not. In almost every other part of the world, insulin is either free or heavily subsidised, as it is here in Oz. And before anyone asks, we get exactly the same insulin as you do. But instead of many dollars per vial, and from here I’ll convert it to units of insulin, I pay $A39 (about $US27) for 7,500 units of insulin.

You guys really need to tap your politicians on the shoulder and point outside the USA border. The rest of the world just shakes it’s head at what you guys are forced to pay.

Preach on — we’re with you! :sunglasses:

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what is this ration can you please enlighten me

Hi Hannah, Profile - alex_of_oz - JDRF TypeOneNation Community Forum
I hope you are starting to feel better! I got my Pfizer booster the same day as my flu shot this year. I felt tired and a little sick for a couple of days. My BGs were fairly normal, probably because I wasn’t eating much, if anything. I did drink a lot of water though. About the second day, I ate some light snacks just to have some nutrition. My BG did go a little higher than normal (200 - 250 after eating). So, I bolused and drank more water. That’s about all we can do!

@alex_of_oz - I am so glad to see your post! I, too, am “old school” in thinking about my diabetes. I was diagnosed 57 years ago. While I do use a pump and CGM, I still feel my control was actually better on MDI. Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to find an endo near me who is willing to let me go back to MDI. They just don’t believe that better control was possible! So, I do what I can with what I’ve been given.

I will say this, I do like having the CGM. I found it much harder to control my BGs on the newer insulins (IE: Humalog and Lantus) and ended up experiencing some Hypoglycemia Unawareness. Since going on the pump, my BG tends to run higher than I’d like, but I don’t worry so much about the Hypos because of the CGM. Personally, I’d like to go back on Humulin R and N as my A1c was much better then. Again, my endo(s) don’t think I should. I’m adjusting as best I can - - and trying my best to adjust the pump settings to get my A1c back down to 6.0 or lower, where it was for over 30 years before Humalog!

Pam K
T1D 57 years and counting!

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PamK, keep in mind that I get the feeling that the whole topic of health and medicine is a bit different here in Oz than it appears to be in the USofA. Here in Oz, the relationship between patient and doctor has the opportunity to be one of client and advisor. Of course most people follow the advice of the doctor without question, which is as it should be. But on the occasions when I meet a new Endo or GP, I start by telling them that they’re going to learn a lot from me about living with T1D. The usual response is one of polite eye-rolling, but not too many visits later they acknowledge that I have taught them stuff about living with T1D that they weren’t taught in university.
So on the regular occasions when they suggest that I could have better control on a pump and CGM, I explain why I’m saying no thank-you. And the one that slumps their shoulders is when I describe about having so much intricately detailed information at my finger tips 24x7 could lead me to be constantly concerned about my level going up or down by 0.1 and then why is my HBA1C 7.1 when it could be 6.9. That then leads to the affor mentioned stress, and it’s inevitable affect on the BGL, becoming a result of the efforts to monitor the BGL - a vicious cycle. They know I’m telling them the truth, and so endeth the discussion.

When I tell them that I ate 650 grams of carbohydrate each day when I was walking across the Sahara back in 2010, they realise that there’s not much they can do to convince me, so we move on to the discussion of general health.

The modern approach of pumps and CGM’s is a brilliant advance and no doubt suits most people. But MDI and finger pricks work now, just as they have done for the past 40+ years, so long as they are mixed with education and knowledge about diet and nutrition and exercise. Some people, including myself, choose to follow that path.
After 47 years and no long term affects, I’m living proof that the old school approach can work. I just wish they would continue to provide the simple education that would help everybody. An apple contains 10 grams of carbohydrate. It’s not all that difficult.

Hi @pamcklein. I’m ticked that your endo insists you use a pump when you would rather not. I don’t need to tell you there’s not a “once size fits all” when it comes to management; and you may have read comments on the forum from people who not only preferred shots for various reasons, but did/do better in them.
Two suggestions:

  1. Keep shopping for a new endo. There was a time when not as many diabetes endos managed pumps as wewould have expected. Maybe that’s turned around, but perhaps an older physician would be more willing to work with you.
  2. Some people take pump breaks occasionally. Talk with your endo about taking an extended one and use the time to prove you know what you’re doing by showing off your better numbers.

I hope you’re able to return to shots since that’s your preference - fight on!

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