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Old 14 Feb 20, 12:49 PM  
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Universal VR
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Flying with high BP and/or Diabetes

OH has been diagnosed with high blood pressure and diabetes. Does anyone have any advice on whether these will affect him flying? He has medication for both now, which he will start taking straight away. We don't go until May so he has enough time to get them into his system and (hopefully) help with his levels. We are just wondering if either of these impact long haul flying.
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Old 14 Feb 20, 12:57 PM  
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Mary A
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My DH has type 1 diabetes and hypertension. I'm presuming your DH diabetes is not treated with insulin?
Always carry medication in hand luggage, in original boxes with a copy of repeat prescription. Take more than he thinks he will need in case of flight cancellations etc
Carry high sugar sweets - DH is finding the small packs of skittles perfect for times when his sugars drop
Carry some items such as granola bars for longer acting sugars and for when he feels he needs a snack
Obviously, Drink plenty of water to stay hydrated
DH does not order a diabetic meal preferring to eat a normal meal but maybe leaving some of the carbs (he never eats the bread roll) and adjusting his insulin accordingly
He wears flight socks

Enjoy your holiday!
Eta - inform insurance
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Old 14 Feb 20, 01:07 PM  
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TheHughesCrew
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My husband has Type 2 diabetes and takes 4 metformin a day. Is also on 3 different blood pressure tablets.

He rarely checks his blood sugars at home (doesn't have a testing kit), and hardly ever checks his blood pressure either. So, it's hard to say how travel affects him! We've travelled to many places over the past few years, usually at least 2 holidays abroad, and has never felt any ill effects from it. He's well controlled on his medication so it really shouldn't make any difference. His diet remains largely the same, he avoids ice creams and puddings etc.

Type 1 diabetes is a whole different ball game though and will need to be monitored more carefully.
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Old 14 Feb 20, 01:14 PM  
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Universal VR
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Originally Posted by Mary A View Post
My DH has type 1 diabetes and hypertension. I'm presuming your DH diabetes is not treated with insulin?
Always carry medication in hand luggage, in original boxes with a copy of repeat prescription. Take more than he thinks he will need in case of flight cancellations etc
Carry high sugar sweets - DH is finding the small packs of skittles perfect for times when his sugars drop
Carry some items such as granola bars for longer acting sugars and for when he feels he needs a snack
Obviously, Drink plenty of water to stay hydrated
DH does not order a diabetic meal preferring to eat a normal meal but maybe leaving some of the carbs (he never eats the bread roll) and adjusting his insulin accordingly
He wears flight socks

Enjoy your holiday!
Eta - inform insurance
Thank you. That's really helpful. I'll get him to ask about whether flight socks would be a good idea, he's never worn them in the past but might need to start.
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Old 14 Feb 20, 01:18 PM  
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Originally Posted by TheHughesCrew View Post
My husband has Type 2 diabetes and takes 4 metformin a day. Is also on 3 different blood pressure tablets.

He rarely checks his blood sugars at home (doesn't have a testing kit), and hardly ever checks his blood pressure either. So, it's hard to say how travel affects him! We've travelled to many places over the past few years, usually at least 2 holidays abroad, and has never felt any ill effects from it. He's well controlled on his medication so it really shouldn't make any difference. His diet remains largely the same, he avoids ice creams and puddings etc.

Type 1 diabetes is a whole different ball game though and will need to be monitored more carefully.
I think it's Metaformin that he's been given. We are finding our way with regards to diet but he's not happy that he can't have ice cream!
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Old 14 Feb 20, 01:22 PM  
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Mr Tom Morrow
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I have high BP but not diabetes.

I take all my medication in my hand luggage and make sure I have enough for another 14 days as well in case of cancellations.

I never take a prescription as it is of no use. No pharmacy will dispense on a UK prescription and the Immigration Guys couldn't care what you have unless it's illegal!

As an aside my GP said that flight socks that aren't 'tailored' to the individual can do more harm than good so doesn't recommend them. Just walk about every hour or so.
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Old 14 Feb 20, 01:36 PM  
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Mo&Chris
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Type 2 Diabetes, along with high blood pressure, cholesterol tablets and underactive thyroid.

Never had an issue on the plane, as others have said, meds in hand luggage, and try to make sure you've got some spare - it was bad enough getting caught in Scotland, I dread to think what it would be like in the States!

I just make sure I have a few snacks on the plane to keep my blood sugar level as well.

If he hasn't already been offered it, ask if there's a DESMOND course or similar he can go on, that helps teach you about managing diabetes. As far as ice cream goes, while sitting down to a massive Ghiardelli's sundae on its own might be off the cards, there's nothing to stop him having a small ice cream after a sensible meal. While the sundae may spike and crash his blood sugar, the full meal will help absorb the impact of the dessert. Just not every night!

/Mo
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Old 14 Feb 20, 01:57 PM  
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Originally Posted by Mo&Chris View Post
Type 2 Diabetes, along with high blood pressure, cholesterol tablets and underactive thyroid.

Never had an issue on the plane, as others have said, meds in hand luggage, and try to make sure you've got some spare - it was bad enough getting caught in Scotland, I dread to think what it would be like in the States!

I just make sure I have a few snacks on the plane to keep my blood sugar level as well.

If he hasn't already been offered it, ask if there's a DESMOND course or similar he can go on, that helps teach you about managing diabetes. As far as ice cream goes, while sitting down to a massive Ghiardelli's sundae on its own might be off the cards, there's nothing to stop him having a small ice cream after a sensible meal. While the sundae may spike and crash his blood sugar, the full meal will help absorb the impact of the dessert. Just not every night!

/Mo
The DESMOND course is interesting to know about. I've just looked and the nearest one is only about 15 miles away so I'll suggest he speaks to the doctor about getting a referral.
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Old 14 Feb 20, 02:47 PM  
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Have had high blood pressure and taken medication for over 15 years. Never been an issue with long flights. As Tom says take meds in hand luggage and always take more than you need.
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Old 14 Feb 20, 06:32 PM  
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I have high BP, have been on meds since 2003.

I always wear flight socks and walk about a lot. My ankles used to swell a lot before I used flight socks, now I have no problem. I put them on in the morning before the flight and leave on a few hours after arriving in FL. Only problem I can wear a skirt of shorts on travel day as looks weird!
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