Heading back to school — whether it’s the first day of kindergarten or last year of college — is an exciting time. But for parents of children ages four years and above living with diabetes, the shopping list may go beyond mainstream products like pencils and books. According to the CDC, one of the best ways parents can help their kids manage diabetes at school is to make a backpack checklist you and/or your child can use every day to be sure all necessary supplies are packed.1 Items on this list can include antiseptic wipes, a blood sugar meter, glucose tablets, and BAQSIMI® (glucagon) nasal powder 3 mg, for parents looking for an option to treat a low blood sugar emergency. BAQSIMI is the first and only dry nasal spray that treats very low blood sugar (severe hypoglycemia) in people with diabetes ages four years and above. Do not use BAQSIMI if: you have a tumor in the gland on top of your kidneys (adrenal gland) called pheochromocytoma; you have a tumor in your pancreas called insulinoma; you are allergic to glucagon, or any other ingredient in BAQSIMI.
Because blood sugar levels can change throughout the day, it’s important to be prepared for situations when your child may have a low blood sugar emergency (severe hypoglycemia), especially as kids, teens and college students leave home to return to school. That’s what Johnny and Andrea Marcum did for their daughter, Emily. “We had heard about BAQSIMI and did some research on it,” says Andrea. “We asked our endocrinologist about it and she prescribed it for Emily.” And it was a good thing she did. During a trip to New York, where Emily was attending college, she became unconscious due to a low blood sugar emergency. Luckily, her parents had BAQSIMI on hand to help. “I opened our bag and all of the contents poured on the street, but I was able to find the BAQSIMI because it’s in a bright yellow container,” says Andrea. “I opened the container—you put it right in the nostril, push the plunger and the powder is absorbed.” Please review the complete instructions for use for BAQSIMI. After giving BAQSIMI, the caregiver should call for emergency medical help right away. If the person does not respond after 15 minutes, another dose may be given, if available.
Now, Emily, who had been private about her diabetes in the past, is hoping to shed light on BAQSIMI and how it helped her through ComeBAQ Stories, a new campaign that aims to encourage important conversations about and preparedness for severe hypoglycemia. “I try to be as positive as I can with my diabetes, but besides that, I was very private about it. I never talked about it to anybody. After having the episode, the way that I talked to my network has changed so much and now everybody that I hang out with, that I spend time with, knows that I’m a diabetic and what to do in case of a low blood sugar emergency,” says Emily. If you’re a parent or a young adult who has experienced a similar situation as the Marcums, BAQSIMI may help you be prepared. If you’re considering adding this to your back-to-school checklist, here are some things to know before you talk to your child’s doctor.
What is BAQSIMI?
BAQSIMI is the first and only dry nasal spray that can treat low blood sugar emergencies. It comes in a single dose that is the same for people age 4 years and older. It is a form of glucagon, which is the same active ingredient that has been around for decades, given as a puff in the nose. BAQSIMI does not need to be inhaled, it can be administered in a low blood sugar emergency even if you are passed out. BAQSIMI may cause serious side effects including: High blood pressure. BAQSIMI can cause high blood pressure in certain people with tumors in their adrenal glands. Low blood sugar. BAQSIMI can cause certain people with tumors in their pancreas to have low blood sugar. Serious allergic reaction. Call your doctor or get medical help right away if you have a serious allergic reaction including rash, difficulty breathing or low blood pressure.
How does it work?
BAQSIMI contains glucagon, which is a naturally occurring hormone that works by telling your liver to bring blood sugar back up. It comes in a pre-measured dose and is administered as a puff in the nose. BAQSIMI is designed to be simple to use. The people around you can help in a low blood sugar emergency if you tell them when and how to use BAQSIMI and where you keep it.
How to use BAQSIMI
For parents sending their kids to school with BAQSIMI, it’s important to have the conversation with teachers and nurses before the first day of school. During that conversation, you’ll want to make sure they know where it’s kept and how to use it so they can be prepared in the event your child has a low blood sugar emergency. You should also remind them that insulin should not be given during this time. For directions on how to use, you can watch a short video and see the full instructions.
1. Center for Disease Control and Prevention. Managing Diabetes at School. Available at: https://www.cdc.gov/diabetes/library/features/managing-diabetes-at-school.html 6 June 2021 [Accessed 20 August 2021]
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