diabetes restrictions

Discussion in 'Motorhome Chat' started by happytraveller123, Feb 12, 2010.

  1. happytraveller123

    happytraveller123 Read Only Funster

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    i currently have a vw campervan but want to upgrade to a larger motorhome with a view to longterming in europe (at least 3 to 6 months at a time ). i have set my sights on something like a hymer with a rack to carry a small scooter . but i have run into a problem that i desperately need advice on . i have type 2 diabetes which i control with diet and medication (NOT INSULIN). this means i can currently drive anything up to hgv on my car licence. i am in my fifties having passed my test some thirty years ago . apart from informing my insurers (which i have) I do not have to inform the dvla about my condition . the dilema i find myself in is if at a later date i have to go on insulin then the dvla have to be told and from what i understand i will need to renew my driving licence every year .plus i will be put on a restricted licence that doesnt allow me to drive anything over 3.5 tons . i am guessing that most motorhomes with a motor scooter on the back will weigh more than this or have i got my facts wrong ! as i am sure you can all imagine the last thing i want to happen is to spend all my lfe savings on a set-up only to then find myself in a year or so without a valid licence and an insurance policy which would automatically become void i presume ! any advice or similar experiences would be so helpfull to me . thank you all for reading.
     
  2. 6pm Cowboy

    6pm Cowboy Read Only Funster

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    Hi
    Warning - I could be wrong !!!

    both of my sons are type 1 diabetics....... I am under the inpression that type 1 and type 2 are different things..... and there is no real reason to assume that type 2 would / could turn into type 1. Certainly I have known ( and do know ) many dieabetics and I have never heard of that happening.

    but maybe you know better ????
     
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  3. savantuk

    savantuk Read Only Funster

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    You are exactly correct. There are no driving restrictions placed on those with type 2 diabetes. I myself am a sufferer, and control the disease with drugs.

    If you lapse into type 1, you come across the weight problem. You must inform DVLA. There is however, a clause that allows you to continue driving a vehicle with a GVW or over 3.5t, but to continue driving you must pass an annual medical. There is no reason to suspect that your licence will be refused unless you become subject to diabetic comas. Correct insulin use should ensure that this is not a possibility.
     
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  4. big map

    big map Funster Life Member

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    Hi.

    I was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes about 5 years ago. It is controlled by diet and medication.

    I still hold my heavy goods licence without restriction.

    Type 2 diabetes cannot become type 1 diabetes but a type 2 diabetic may need to use insulin if the disease progresses.

    Mike.
     
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  5. gillr49

    gillr49 Read Only Funster

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    My husband is using insulin for type 2, not sure about the weight restriction as our van is less than 3.5t but he renews every 3 years
     
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  6. happytraveller123

    happytraveller123 Read Only Funster

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    re diabetes

    thanks for replies .i agree that type 1 and 2 are different but insulin can be required in both cases in certain instances .also there is a newish treatment out now called byetta which also involves a injection . i was told by the diabetic nurse that the dvla would need to be infomed if i went on that as well . is there any way i can avoid the whole issue by choosing a living in van that would stay under 3.5 tons in the first place ? therefore if my condition does change the restriction wouldnt apply anyway ? I take it a hymer would be out of the question but are any other COACHBUILTS suitable ? does the 3.5 tons mean when loaded with full tanks scooter etc or does it apply to the basic vehicle then you are allowed to load up to a payload weight ? I AM REALLY CONFUSED with it all and i feel like my dream is fading fast !
     
  7. lookback

    lookback Read Only Funster

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    I am a type 2 diabetic controlled by tablets. I did notify the DVLA who, in turn, acknowledged my condition without imposing any penalties but added that should I become insulin dependent then I need to update them.

    So, in summary, keep your own body weight down, get a bigger van and enjoy yourself.


    Ian
     
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  8. ips

    ips Read Only Funster

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    I know nothing of diabetes but life is too short to worry about what may happen in the future, enjoy today ..... tomorow may never come. :Smile:
     
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  9. olley

    olley Funster

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    If the van is plated at 3.5t it cannot weigh more and stay legal. There will be a plate on the van, listing its max weight, max axle weights and max train weight.

    If your licence restricts you to 3.5t you cannot drive a vehicle plated at more than 3.5t

    What about a small fold-up scooter trailer?

    Olley
     
  10. john-A

    john-A Read Only Funster

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    My son is type 1 and as i understand it type 2 can need to change to insulin like type 1 but only if they don’t control their levels with the tablets and keeping their weight down.
    Type 1 is when their pancreas stops working altogether.
    So as long as you look after yourself you should be able to enjoy a lifetime in your motorhome without worries
     
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  11. Randonneur

    Randonneur Read Only Funster

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    Diabetes

    I have Type 2 Diabetes and used to be on tablets/diet but am now on tablets/diet/Insulin. Type 2 cannot turn into Type 1. Even if you are having Insulin that doesn't mean that you are Insulin Dependant. So that we did not need to bother with all the rules and regulations we made sure that our vans have been 3500kg fully loaded. On our present van is have a very large payload, I think it is about 600kg. Our van has a large garage at the back, built in, that will take a scooter etc up to 140kg. We also have a fixed bed and an L shaped lounge. The length of the van is 7m and we have plenty of storage space so it means you don't have to go over the top with a weighty van to get what you want.
     
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  12. happytraveller123

    happytraveller123 Read Only Funster

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    re diabetes

    thank you very much for that info randonneur am i right in thinking then that the stated unladen weight for your motorhome would be about 2900 kgs ! IF so then i will definately give this model some consideration . what engine does yours have .? any thing i should look out for ?
     
  13. midlander9

    midlander9 Read Only Funster

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    Good friend of mine is an insulin diabetic and he owns and drives a 24 foot long wheelbase Bessacar, nearly 4 tonnes, He has to have a medical every 12 months and has a full license, other than that he has no restrictions, hope this helps.

    Mike
     
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  14. carpyone

    carpyone Read Only Funster

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    When I became type 2 diabetic a few years ago I was told that I had to notify DVLA even though I control it by diet and tablets. The DVLA impossed no restrictions on the type of vehicle/weight etc. They issued me with a letter confirming my notification of my condition which I have had to show to some insurance companies before they would quote for both my m/h and my car. Dvla made it clear that an insurance company cannot load the premium for a type two diabetic.

    My m/h is an AutoTrail Scout which weighs in at 3850 kg. When I reach 70 I intend to replate the vehicle back to 3500kg so that I do not need to change it. However I would have to take care with the loading etc.

    As a type 2 controlled by diet and tablets your control of the condition may deteriorate over time and you may require the use of insulin injections.This does not mean you are then classed as type 1. Type 1 is descibed as those who sadly were born with diabetes or it was discovered in infancy and the body fails to produce any effective insulin itself.

    I can understand your initial anxieties but as some else said life is too short to worry about what might happen in the future, so long as you take all reasonable steps to look after yourself live for your life now.

    Good luck in looking for your motorhome I'm sure if you take the plunge you will love it, I certainly do.
     
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  15. dpick

    dpick Read Only Funster

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    Hi I am type 2 diabetic for the last 20 years. I started as diet controlled then after about 4 years went onto diet and tablet control then 8 years ago went onto insulin control. When I informed DVLA I lost all but B+E on my licence and have to have medical every three years. Still enjoying life with Nissan Navara and 5th wheel. So while small changes due to diabetic now retired and enjoying every minute.

    dpick
     
  16. Judge Mental

    Judge Mental Funster Deceased RIP

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    i am type 2 on insulin. the important thing here is your health and blood sugar control. I was worried about insulin and refused for years to go on it........in the process have damaged my eyes and kidneys etc. due to poor control.

    wished i had gone on insulin earlier it is much easier for me to get reasonable blood sugar control.......

    now on 3 year restricted licence and we are a family of 4 and manage within this 3500kg restriction (Euramobil high top) you can always tow a trailer for long term travels and carry all your extra stuff in that. or take the yearly medical and drive what you want:Smile:
     
  17. Tinyk

    Tinyk Read Only Funster

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    Having been in your exact position I would just like to add, you DO have to notify DVLA of your condition regardless of the treatment. Diet and tablets are fine and they will normally not impose any restriction as soon as you move on to insulin as I did they then remove the entitlement to drive anything over 3500 and put you on a 3 year renewal. The form you advise them on has sections for diet, diet and tablets, insulin and thus you need to inform them as you move between categories.

    From there you can get back the bit between 3.5t and 7.5t but you have to be on insulin and have to be hypo clear for a minimum period of 6 months, once your doctor signs the form to say you are clear you can then get the entitlement back, its then on a 12 monthly basis.

    I was going down that route but never completed the process, I wont go into it here but the jump from tablet to insulin means a minimum of 6 months without being able to drive your van if you did decide to go for something over 3.5t.

    To be honest we bought our adria izola and had the plate raised to 3.85t to cope with everthing we needed to carry but knowing should anything ever go wrong we can clear a lot of the rubbish out of the van and have it downplated to 3.5t removing the nessisary requirment for the added category. Maybe that could be an option for you, I was unfortunatley stupid and thought I could carry on my direction and tablets would be the solution, obviosly at some point you get to a stage where they cannot give you any more tablets and you have to move on, if you stick to the diets and eat healthily you should be able to aviod that situation hopefully for a very long time.

    I hope things work out for you. I had a very big fight with DVLA to get my license back to full after the insulin, they argued that I had to have a full medical this that the other and some more. I told them that this was complete rubbish, I was not unfit to drive I could only not drive because I was taking insulin it was the insulin that made me unfit, once I stopped taking the insulin I should be able to get my license straight back, after some debating they acknowledged that I was correct and as soon as my doctor sent them a note saying insulin had been removed from my repeat medication and was no longer being supplied with it their doctor gave me back the full entitlement. I think they had just never dealt with a case where somebody came off insulin and thus had no idea how to deal with it correctly.

    Kev
     
  18. VMax666

    VMax666 Read Only Funster

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    Hymer B544 can carry a Honda ST70 and still has 50kg spare on back axle , (max wt is 3100kg, could be upgraded if needed to 3400kg with air ride).
    VMax
     
  19. sedge

    sedge Funster

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    Bit of a lack of knowledge about diabetes shown by some posters on 'ere LOL

    Nobody on insulin is very liable to go into a diabetic coma. Type 1's are defo more liable to do that than any T2 on insulin for the simple reason that a (correctly diagnosed) T2 will never get ketoacidosis (DKA) whether taking insulin or not, ie the bodies organs completely closing down because of far too high blood glucose for far too long. If you go into DKA then it's literally straight to A&E, do not pass Go etc. But as I said - DKA cannot happen to a T2.

    However, what anyone on insulin (T1 or T2) can get is a hypo (an instance of too-low blood glucose - "hypoglyceamia") because eg you have jabbed and omitted to eat, or not eaten enough, or not eaten suitable combinations of food to match the speed of the action of the insulin. Some mild hypos can be cured with one swig of Lucozade; however if you go very very low you pass out and usually land up in the back of an ambulance and may not wake up till much later when you wonder who turned the radio on and where in your house you have a suspended ceiling, fluorescent lights and curtains you don't recall hanging, LOL Then you notice the drip stand with the glucose drip and it all sort of starts coming back .....

    This is exactly why, on insulin, you must test your blood before you pick up your car keys and must test every two hours whilst driving. I have had two incidents between my car and a crash barrier of the M42 in the past. I swear to God had that been the M6 I wouldn't be here right now. I had to pack in driving for 12 months after the second one. I've also nearly fallen sideways, twide off motorbikes I was riding pillion on, for the same reason. Very very severe hypo's - say you pass out somewhere on your own so aren't found for Lord knows how long - can lead to brain damage.

    Anyone on insulin with a normal car licence only gets it granted for 3 years max at a time. Every time it's renewed we have to complete several forms, one of which asks for your permission to obtain a medical report - which they would do if your answers make em query something. They may also check others at random; haven't a clue. But basically as has been said if you haven't had a hypo 'requiring the assistance of any other person' for ages then you don't have anything to worry about.

    I've been T1 for nearly 40 years. It is about 5 years since I have had ANY such incident (that includes by own husband not having had to help me! - and he's with me 24/7, 4 days out of every 7 for working weeks and constantly at holiday times)

    If you do have to start taking insulin then I'd think you need to give it a good say 6 months to ensure you and your medics are entirely happy with yourself before embarking on any mega-journey. UK or abroad.

    And make sure you have more than adequate medical insurance before you step on that ferry. And any medication you need, you have to get a mega-supply from the doctor before you go! (it doesn't take up very much room in the fridge, honest!)

    (It's a laugh, they positively blench when I ask em for a 4 x supply of test strips to go to Australia - but as they only give me max 20 days supply as a repeat it's their own fault, LOL - I dunno why they persist in doing this with diabetes, we know it's incurable, why don't they?????)
     
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  20. Kon tiki

    Kon tiki Read Only Funster

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    You can probably find quite a lot of coachbuilts plated at 3.5t with reasonable payloads, A class vans though tend to be heavier, while they might also be 3.5t they have very low payload.
    I also have an Adria Izola on a Reanult Master plated at 3850 kgs with a payload of around 850 kgs, it can easily be downplated to 3.5 with a loss of the 350 kgs from the payload.

    Can't comment on the diabetes but people once they reach 70 have a problem & require a medical to drive over 3.5t. I think with the retirement age going up as we all are supposed to be healthier & living longer then the 70 age limit should be increased also to at least 75 .
     
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