NEW YORK, March 11 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- About 1,000 people
attending the Diabetes Research Institute's Carnival for a Cure fundraising
event in New York this afternoon were treated to a live concert by the
young pop rock band, the Jonas Brothers, and some surprising inspiration
from one of the band members.
(Photo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20070311/CLSU025 )
Nick Jonas, 14, who sings vocals and plays guitar and drums for the
band, took center stage after the band's opening song and asked for a show
of hands of people in the audience, especially kids, who have diabetes. He
then raised his own hand, acknowledging for the first time publicly that he
has type 1 diabetes, a disease that results when the body does not produce
the hormone insulin that is needed to convert sugar into energy.
Nick, who performs music around the country and in Europe with his
older brothers Kevin, 19, and Joe, 17, told the families at New York's
Metropolitan Pavilion he was diagnosed while on tour in November 2005.
Exhibiting the classic symptoms of the disease, he was thirsty all the
time, lost a lot of weight, and was acting uncharacteristically moody. When
his doctor told him his sugar level was 700, meaning he had diabetes, his
first thought was that he might die.
"I had an emotional breakdown since I really had no idea what diabetes
was all about," said Nick. "I wondered, 'why me?' Then I asked myself, 'why
not me?' and realized that I might be able to help other kids with
Nick spent three days in the hospital learning how to manage his
diabetes, including how to give himself insulin injections several times a
day. The band's busy tour schedule as a Disney Channel and teen and
tween-aged pop rock band favorite, made managing his diabetes with
injections a challenge.
After reviewing different insulin therapy options including
conventional insulin pumps that deliver insulin via long tubing attached to
a pump typically worn on the belt, Nick opted instead for a relatively new
insulin delivery system called the OmniPod(R) Insulin Management System,
developed by Insulet Corporation. One of Nick's Pediatric Diabetes
Educators, Carolyn Gershenson, RN, CPT of New York Pediatric Diabetes
Consultants met with him and taught him how to use and administer insulin
using the OmniPod System.
The OmniPod System is a wireless continuous insulin delivery system
that eliminates the need for injections and offers the same functions as a
conventional insulin pump without the cumbersome tubing or pump worn on the
belt. The System offers an innovative virtually pain-free automated
insertion system that is hands-free for the user, as well as an integrated
blood glucose meter. Nick was actually among the first consumers in the
country to use the OmniPod System.
"The important thing for Nick was that he be able to manage his insulin
in a way that complemented his lifestyle," Gershenson said. "The OmniPod
System made it possible for him to use the best therapy for
insulin-requiring diabetes - continuous insulin therapy - in a very
discreet, easy, and unencumbered way, and without interfering with his
activities as a teenager and performer. The pod that adheres to the body is
small, discreet and tube- free, and insulin delivery is entirely controlled
with an easy-to-use, wireless hand-held device that also serves as a blood
glucose meter and looks like a PDA or Mp3 player."
"I knew I wanted the OmniPod System the second I saw it," said Nick.
"The OmniPod System has really changed my life."
Nick and his brothers just released a song on the soundtrack for
Disney's new movie Meet the Robinsons due in theaters March 30. The band is
recording their second CD, which is due to be launched in August, and their
single, Year 3000, is number one on Radio Disney's Countdown. Last month,
the Jonas Brothers were featured in Billboard Magazine as a top 40 band.
After the show, before meeting fans for autographs and photos, Nick
received gratitude and praise from Tom Stern, chairman-elect of the
Diabetes Research Institute Foundation as well as parents of kids with
diabetes for having the courage to tell his story.
"We are incredibly inspired by the courage that Nick demonstrated by
announcing that he is dealing with the daily challenges of type 1
diabetes," Stern said, "We are grateful to the entire Jonas family for
sharing this very personal message and for supporting the efforts of the
Diabetes Research Institute."
"At first, I was worried that diabetes would keep me from performing
and recording and doing everything a teenager likes to do, but, my career
is really ramping up," Nick said. "I want to let kids know that it doesn't
have to be so hard. The most important thing is to never ever let yourself
get down about having diabetes, because you can live a really great life as
a kid with diabetes."
For more information about the OmniPod System, visit MyOmniPod.com. For
more information about the Diabetes Research Institute,
SOURCE Insulet Corporation