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Blog – My Type-1 Diabetes and Islet Transplant

This blog contains a summary of all activity and events associated with my Pancreatic Islet Transplant and Type-1 Diabetes.  The latest activity is shown first.

Please contact me if you have any questions, if I can be of help in any way, or if I can provide any more information.

Pancreatic Islet Transplant Blog - Roger Sparks

City of Hope Fundraising Letter

City of Hope Fundraising Letter featuring the success they have had with the Pancreatic Islet Transplant Clinical trial and my particular results:

City of Hope - Duarte, CA

Video – Briskin Center for Clinical Research

I was very happy to be a small part of this video for the Judy & Bernard Briskin Center for Clinical Research at City of Hope.

City of Hope - Duarte, CA - Roger Sparks

News and Breakthroughs – My City of Hope Transplant

Feeling very privileged to find my story on City of Hope’s website about Type-1 Diabetes under News and Breakthroughs as they work to find a cure.

City of Hope - Duarte, CA - Roger Sparks

Type-1 Diabetes – City of Hope – My Personal 3-Year Miracle

This is a presentation I recently made at a City of Hope event summarizing my 3 years in a Clinical Trial for Type-1 Diabetes.  It’s my personal 3-year miracle.

YinYang - Immunosuppression - Roger Sparks

2 1/2 Years: No Insulin + Immunosuppression – The Yin Yang Of An Islet Transplant

After 2 1/2 years, I am still living a dream I never thought possible. The most frequent questions I am asked about my pancreatic islet transplant are about how my life has changed and what about immunosuppression? Here are some answers and a little perspective.

September 2017 Blood Sugar Numbers - Roger Sparks

September 2017 Blood Sugar Numbers – Still Wow

My September 2017 blood sugar numbers remain quite amazing. For Type-1 Diabetics, and our friends and family, it shows what is possible for all of us.

9 Months After Transplant - Roger Sparks

9 Months Post Transplant – No Insulin – No Complications – Lots of Gratitude

9 months post transplant, I’m still living totally without insulin or complications.  This is a quick update on my status, as I am filled with gratitude and thanks to so many.

Roger Sparks - Six Months - Islet Transplant

Six Months After My Islet Transplant – Each Day Is a Gift

Six months after my pancreatic islet transplant, I’m living totally without insulin. After 35 years with Type-1 Diabetes, each day is a breathtaking gift.

The Bonnie Sher Show - Roger Sparks

The Bonnie Sher Show – December 2016

The Bonnie Sher Show, Boomer Life is a live 50‐minute Internet radio and podcast program dedicated to a generation of Americans who continue to be a major force ifor social change and poster children for independence and self‐expression.

September 2016 Blood Sugar Numbers - Roger Sparks

September 2016 Blood Sugar Numbers – Wow

My September 2016 blood sugar numbers are quite amazing. For Type-1 Diabetics, and our friends and family, it shows what is possible for all of us.

September 2016 Blood Sugar Numbers - Islet Transplant

90 Days With No Insulin – But Who’s Counting?

A Type-1 Diabetic for 35 years, I no longer take insulin and my life has abruptly and dramatically changed – all because of a City of Hope Clinical Trial.

The Bonnie Sher Show - Roger Sparks

The Bonnie Sher Show – June 2016

The Bonnie Sher Show, Boomer Life is a live 50‐minute Internet radio and podcast program dedicated to a generation of Americans who continue to be a major force for social change and poster children for independence and self‐expression.

Pancreatic Islet Transplant - Day 14 - Roger Sparks

Day 14 – Still No Insulin Needed

At day 14 after my second Islet Transplant at the City of Hope, I still require no external insulin.  Recovering well, I’m starting to believe what is happening may really be true. Day 14 – Absorbing The Results Each day brings more surprises: I’m requiring no insulin. I have normal blood sugars. I eat normal […]

City of Hope - Duarte, CA - Roger Sparks

Three Days Post Transplant 2 – No More Insulin

For the first time in 35 years as a Type-1 diabetic, three days after my second Islet Transplant at the City of Hope, I require no external insulin. If you’re a Type-1 Diabetic, or know a Type-1, you’ll hopefully understand how impossible this is to comprehend.  At three days post-transplant, I’ve now had two days […]

City of Hope - Duarte, CA - Roger Sparks

Transplant Number 2 – On The Waitlist

“I am writing to inform you that you have been listed as ACTIVE on the UNOS waitlist as of today, June 10, 2016 at 1:45 pm.  We will notify you as soon as we learn of a donor pancreas becoming available.”   ….. City of Hope As I read the words in this email, my eyes […]

Pancreatic Islet Transplant - Day 14 - Roger Sparks

Islet Transplant – Day 120 – And A Decision

Approaching 120 days post-transplant, I feel very, very good. No Lows. No Highs. A1C’s in the 5’s. It may not last forever, but it’s pretty sweet right now. Where I Am Now At this point in the clinical trial we have a pretty good idea of how my body is adjusting, and how well the […]

City of Hope - Duarte, CA - Roger Sparks

Current Thoughts

My thoughts at this point center around my confidence in the City of Hope and my transplant team.  I am stunned about how they have already changed my life. In a process like this, you are reminded every day of how lucky you are to be part of it – by the disciplines you develop, […]

Insulin - Drug Cost - Roger Sparks

Insulin & Prescription Drug Costs

Insulin – required by diabetics to live – is a prime example of out of control prescription drug costs and a mercenary delivery system.

Islet Transplant - Day 75 - Roger Sparks

Transplant Status – Day 75

At day 75, an A1C blood test in the 5’s illustrates the potential life change this clinical trial offers Type-1 diabetics. But decisions remain for me.

A little help from my friends - Roger Sparks - Diabetes

A Little Help From My Friends

A few thoughts about the importance of friends during my years with diabetes and my recent islet transplant and recovery.

The Bonnie Sher Show - Roger Sparks

The Bonnie Sher Show – March 2016

The Bonnie Sher Show, Boomer Life is a live 50‐minute Internet radio and podcast program dedicated to a generation of Americans who continue to be a major force for social change and poster children for independence and self‐expression.

Pancreatic Islet Transplant Blog - Blood - Roger Sparks

Transplant Recovery – First 2 Months

Blood samples, drug changes, monitoring, and visits to the City of Hope dominated the first two months post-surgery.  In addition to taking lots of drugs, three times a day, I had to carefully record them in a drug diary, monitor all the food I ate, test my blood sugar levels, and carefully note any reaction […]

Pancreatic Islet Transplant - Injection - Roger Sparks

Transplant Surgery

The Islet Transplant surgery was about a one and a half hour procedure. I was awake throughout the entire process, under a mild sedative.

City of Hope - Duarte, CA - Roger Sparks

Making The Transplant Decision

I first contacted the City of Hope (COH), Duarte, California, in May, 2015, about their clinical trial that I had found on the internet. This video – from a patient in one of their earlier trials, several years ago – hit all my hot buttons, and convinced me that I wanted to find out more […]

Diabetic Hypoglycemia

Hypoglycemia – For Family & Friends

If you are involved with a Type-1 diabetic, or have a friend or family member with diabetes, it’s very important to understand hypoglycemia – low blood sugars – and what to do when you see them happen.

How an Insulin Pump Works

Life With Type-1 Diabetes

I have had Type-1 Diabetes for over 35 years. This means my pancreas produces no insulin, and I require daily external injections of insulin to survive.