|PHOTO: STEPHANIE STADTHERR, 22, FOUND
HELP AND SUPPORT AT THE EDWARD
When 22-year old Stephanie Stadtherr arrived at the Edward ER in the summer of 2011, her Type 1 diabetes seemed to be winning the battle. Her glucose levels had been out of control, and she was very sick with a life-threatening complication called diabetic ketoacidosis. She was given insulin and treated for dehydration.
Later visits to the doctor revealed she had a tumor and a cyst in her kidney. In January of 2012 she underwent surgery to remove the growths and part of her right kidney. Soon after that, her vision started to blur as a result of diabetic retinopathy.
Today, Stephanie's feeling much better and hoping treatment will head off any further loss of vision. She's become affiliated with a primary care physician and gotten help from the Edward Diabetes Center.
"When you have a long-term disease you really need education and support to keep on track," says Celia Morelos, BSN, RN, CDE, a certified diabetes educator at Edward.
Each patient at the center receives a personalized treatment plan developed by the staff with input from the patient and the primary care physician.
"Celia taught me so much about what foods to eat, as well as everything I know about my insulin pump," says Stadtherr.
Morelos also helped Stadtherr get the resources needed for successful diabetes management. She now has an insulin pump donated by another patient, and she receives free insulin. As a result of this support, and especially Stadtherr's own efforts, there has been a significant improvement in her A1C tests – a measure of glucose control over an extended period.
Stadtherr says, "I would tell anyone who has diabetes that there are people out there who can help you. I didn't think there were and I didn't want to go. But (the diabetes educators) really do help you become determined to do better."
Diabetes Awareness Fair - Saturday, November 17
Rep. Tom Cross and Edward Hospital will host a free Diabetes Awareness Fair on Saturday, November 17, 9 a.m.-12 noon at the Edward Plainfield Outpatient Center, 24600 W. 127th St. in Plainfield. MLB Hall of Famer Lou Brock will be the featured speaker at the event. He'll share his experience of living with diabetes at 11 a.m. There will also be screenings and demonstrations to educate the public about preventing and/or managing diabetes. No registration is required. Call (630) 527-6363 for more information.