Behind the Scenes of Medical Blogs: Diabetes Mine

amywhitesofeyes_bw7.jpgI’ve already presented several famous medical bloggers to you. My aim is to get my readers closer to these quality blogs and the bloggers as well. I’d like to convince more and more health professionals/people interested in medicine to create their own blogs by providing interesting “behind-the-scenes” interviews. The eleventh blogger in this series is Amy Tenderich, the author of, a blog about diabetes.


  • You’ve been blogging for more than 3 years now. How can you maintain your blog? How much time does it take? has kind of taken over my life, for sure. I now post every weekday, and sometimes on weekends, too. It’s very time-consuming. But it’s also therapeutic, because the blogging has become intertwined with my diabetes care and my support community. I feel like I couldn’t stand the diabetes if I didn’t have that.

  • How do you find information for your blog? You certainly read other blogs, journals but do you use RSS reader? How many blogs do you track?

Of course I peruse hundreds of blogs and medical sites. I’m a big fan of the Bloglines prescription service. Honestly, I could hire an assistant just for tracking all the health and diabetes-specific information on the web. But what I choose to write about is really mostly the stuff that just “catches my eye,” or that I believe will truly impact people’s lives.

  • You got special mention in Medgadget’s Weblog Awards; you’ve been featured in several magazines. I’m pretty sure you are one of the most respected ambassadors of diabetes. What do you think about it?

That’s very kind of you. In fact, there’s a very rich community of patient bloggers out there. I think we all add value with our individual strengths and style, and together, we’ve created a new force: a Voice of the Patient Community that could never be heard before. This is the essence of the Health 2.0 movement that’s underway – a whole new model for consumer involvement in the healthcare system. I’m just delighted to be a part of it!

  • The mission of patient blogs is to educate other patients, but do you learn from what you write about? Do your readers, other patients help you how to deal with diabetes?

OMG, you have no idea how much I’ve learned in the last three years writing! In part from my own research, but also from the many, many wonderful people out there who comment and correspond with me. Remember, I’m a relative newbie to this disease. There are folks out there who’ve had it for DECADES. They keep us grounded on what’s really possible when we see all these sensational headlines about diabetes. The veterans give me tips, which I strive to share with the rest of the community. Some readers argue with me. Some say thank you. As sappy as it sounds, a few of them have actually made me cry. Let’s just say we need each other.

  • What do you think about the patient-community sites focusing on diabetes ( ;, etc.)? How much can web 2.0 be helpful for patients?

The convergence of Web 2.0 and healthcare is huge. Relationships between patients and caregivers are changing, medicine is becoming more personalized, and healthcare itself is moving toward an open market model in this country. You can read more about my take on these changes at the Digital Influence 360˚blog.

Meanwhile, all of these new interactive web tools are fantastic for us PWDs (people with diabetes). We can learn, share, and reach out to other patients around the world 24/7 essentially for free. We can “beam” our glucose results to our doctors, search for healthy recipes, and “talk” to other real people living with this volatile disease. IMHO, the whole experience of being a patient is being transformed.

  • At last, what are your future plans?

I view technology and social media as important factors in bridging the gap between “the system” and its consumers. A lot needs to be fixed in healthcare in the US – from the insurance reimbursement model to the design of medical devices for patients with long-term illness. I want to be an active part of the group that helps improve the situation through community involvement. I think of not only as a news source, but also a gathering place to learn, share, laugh, and sometimes vent. I hope to keep building out that robust community.

Thank you, Amy, for the kind answers! Check out her blog and the other patient blogs out there!

Behind-the-Scenes interviews so far: