- By Dana Sparks
Sharing Mayo Clinic: Allma says goodbye to diabetes after kidney and pancreas transplant
For decades, Allma Johnson managed her diabetes with insulin and diet. But at 43, her heart and kidneys were failing as a result of the disease, and she needed a kidney and pancreas transplant.
When Allma Johnson was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes at 15, she knew her life would be forever changed. An active high school student involved in marching and concert band, Allma had to begin daily insulin injections.
For years, the injections were all she needed to manage her disease. In her 30s, she transitioned to an insulin pump, along with a continuous glucose monitor. A few years later, she returned to daily injections and routine blood sugar checks. Together with a healthy diet, they kept her diabetes in check.
But in early 2015, when she was 43, Allma began to experience troubling symptoms. "I started noticing swelling in my ankles that slowly progressed to my calves," Allma says.
Those symptoms signaled the beginning of a downward spiral in Allma's condition that took a serious toll on her heart and kidneys.