Diabetes Patient Receives Tips to a Healthier Lifestyle after Attending Education Sessions

vanessa williams photoA patient of UniversityCare at Edmondson Village for almost ten years, Vanessa Williams was diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes by Dr. Neil Siegel in March 2010. After her diagnosis, Williams was referred to diabetes education classes at the Edmondson Village, where she met nurse supervisor/educator Lydia Hickey. Hickey taught Williams how to manage her cholesterol and blood sugar levels through healthy dieting and daily monitoring. Read more about her story below.

For almost ten years, I have been a patient of Dr. Neil Siegel's at UniversityCare in Edmondson Village. During each of my visits, I always experienced good service. Dr. Siegel is a wonderful doctor, and the nurses always treated me well.

In May 2010, I was diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes. Prior to my diagnosis, I had been losing a lot of weight. From 2006 to 2009, I lost 25 pounds. At first, I thought I was going through menopause, and my weight loss was caused by stress. However, this year the weight began coming off a bit faster. In March 2010, Dr. Siegel performed some tests, which indicated that both my blood sugar and cholesterol levels were high.

After Dr. Siegel diagnosed me with Type 2 Diabetes, I immediately began treatment for my condition. Dr. Siegel prescribed Metformin to control my blood sugar, which I now take twice a day. I have also started to watch my diet and eat the right kinds of foods. This helps my blood sugar stay under 150. Sometimes, my blood sugar even reaches 88, which is excellent for someone with diabetes.

Dr. Siegel also referred me to Edmondson Village for diabetes education classes. At my first consultation, Lydia Hickey was the first nurse I met. Even though I was upset by my recent diagnosis, she made me feel better. She let me know that being diagnosed with diabetes is not the end of the world; as long as I continue to eat properly and take care of myself, I will get better.

Lydia taught me about eating small portions, and she also told me to try to stay away from sugar, fat and cholesterol. At the time, my cholesterol was high, but thanks to the help I received from Lydia, it's much lower now and my sugar has also come down.

Lydia is great! She showed me how to measure my blood sugar, and she was really nice and very helpful each time I came in. She was really good to me. I couldn't ask for a better person.

Dr. Siegel continues to be very helpful as I learn how to better control my diabetes. When he diagnosed me, he was very straight to the point and told me what was going on with my body. I still see him for follow-up visits. If I continue to successfully manage my diabetes, I may not have to take medications in the future. I went to the University of Maryland Center for Diabetes and Endocrinology in July 2010 for diabetes education, and I plan to attend more education classes there to learn more about my condition and how to best manage it.