Manning Regional Healthcare Center
Patient Experience: Donna Rutz Deals with Diabetes
By: Pam Kusel, Manning News Journal
It was a surprise to Donna Rutz when her healthcare provider Hope Jensen, ARNP, a primary care nurse practitioner at Manning Regional Healthcare Center (MRHC) told her she could have diabetes.
She was consulting with Jensen about hormone therapy and Jensen was reviewing her blood work. She asked Rutz if they could do more blood work to make the determination.
“I was there for two other things and then she laid that on me, and I thought ‘Oh my gosh.’ I started to cry, and she said, ‘There is nothing you did to cause this. It is in your genes’.”
Rutz’s father has diabetes.
After the bloodwork confirmed that she was diabetic, Jensen told Rutz if she wanted to stay off medication, it would mean lifestyle changes – exercise and changing her eating habits.
She told Rutz, “Your numbers aren’t high enough to go on medication right now, but you are close.”
Rutz said, “If you are overweight, it affects your body’s insulin, and I knew I needed to lose weight anyway.”
Jensen suggested she talk to Liz Auen, a dietitian at HyVee. Rutz found her visit with Auen very helpful.
“We walked up and down the aisles of the store and talked about food labels. I took some photos with my phone to help me remember some things she said. She pointed out what to eat and what to stay away from,” said Rutz. “Hope also told me it would helpful to go to the diabetic center at St. Anthony Hospital. I saw Kora Vogel and Deb Dieter there. They were both very helpful. Hope (Jensen) and Liz (Auen) took training there and so it was really good. They all know each other and I know I can talk to any of them at any time.”
In December Rutz had a three-month checkup.
“I had lost weight and got my blood count down to 6.0 and Hope was very excited. She told me I was back to being a prediabetic,” said Rutz. “I will always be considered diabetic, but because my A1C, I am termed pre-diabetic and do not need medication.”
She monitors her blood glucose level with a finger prick two or three times a week.
“One thing that was hard for me was to eat breakfast, but she said I should never skip a meal and should try to keep them about the same time each day. That’s important,” she said. “Hope, Liz, Kora and Deb all said a diabetic can eat whatever they want; its all about reading labels for carb and portion control.”
Rutz tries to stay away from breads and noodles, and unfortunately, pizza which she loves. She is now feeling better and has more energy.