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024: Scientist Noah Gardner on Living with Type 1 (Juvenile) Diabetes

Uninvisible Pod

024: Scientist Noah Gardner on Living with Type 1 (Juvenile) Diabetes

Noah Gardner is a scientist based in Massachusetts. He was diagnosed with type 1 (juvenile) diabetes in 1995, at the age of 12. While this autoimmune condition is genetic, his…
May 29, 2019
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024: Scientist Noah Gardner on Living with Type 1 (Juvenile) Diabetes

Noah Gardner is a scientist based in Massachusetts. He was diagnosed with type 1 (juvenile) diabetes in 1995, at the age of 12. While this autoimmune condition is genetic, his diagnosis came completely out of the blue to both him and his family. A little background on T1 diabetes: in an autoimmune reaction, the immune system attacks beta cells in the pancreas (which produce insulin), thus destroying them. Hence the need for insulin and devices like insulin pumps, which effectively act as an external pancreas for survivors. 24 years since his diagnosis, Noah is living in central Massachusetts with his wife and toddler, working at biotech company Intellia Therapeutics on gene editing. And he is here to share his story with us!  

Join us as Noah shares… 

– the classic symptoms of T1 diabetes 

– how he was diagnosed 

– that T1 diabetes is a genetic disease and an autoimmune condition 

– how T1 diabetes works 

– how he has worked to manage his symptoms 

– the distinction between his pre-diabetes life and his post-diagnosis life; and the physical and emotional grieving and growth processes involved – especially as a child 

– technologies that have improved his quality of life (and these get better every year): insulin pumps and a CGM (continuous glucose monitor) 

– what makes T1 diabetes easier to manage than some other invisible illnesses: it’s pretty straightforward, because treatment is very targeted 

– health complications and implications of diabetes 

– that, at 36, he is already dealing with one complication of diabetes: glaucoma 

– the community he has slowly built in his post-diagnosis life 

– how he has become an advocate through the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation 

– the stigma associated with diabetes, and how this can affect kids in particular 

– the biggest stressors associated with diabetes: health insurance (an awareness of always being sure to have it), and that you are constantly on alert re: your symptoms and management 

– that there is still no cure for diabetes 

– how being chronically ill has impacted his personal and professional relationships 

– the challenge of traveling with an insulin pump and a CGM 

– his thoughts on the insulin crisis and health insurance concerns with regard to diabetes 

– his tips for living with T1 diabetes, and how families can manage the disease together 

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