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Shrewsbury teen raising funds, awareness for diabetes research

By Valerie Franchi, Contributing Writer

Cindy and Lexi Evangelous (Photo/submitted)

Cindy and Lexi Evangelous (Photo/submitted)

Shrewsbury – In 2013, at age 14, Shrewsbury resident Lexi Evangelous was having problems with her vision. She found it harder to pay attention in class, began losing weight and felt tired much of the time.

“She had had perfect vision up to then,” her mother Cindy said, “so we knew something else was going on.”

She was soon diagnosed with Type 1 juvenile diabetes.

Now a junior at St. Peter-Marion High School in Worcester, Lexi is 100-percent insulin dependent. She has transitioned from seven to 10 shots each day to wearing an insulin pump full time.

“I work hard every day at managing it all, counting carbs, checking blood sugars and insulin delivery all while being a regular teenager,” Lexi said. “I still have to ‘finger prick’ and test blood sugars all day long in order to treat highs and lows which can sometimes be hard to manage. These can change my day and activity levels on a dime.”

She also has to watch for “danger signs that lead to extreme high or low blood sugar, which are both medical emergencies,” she noted. Type 1 diabetes also causes lowering of immunity which makes her susceptible to other illnesses.

At school, she has fielded questions from classmates about the disease and treatment.

“People would ask ‘how do you get it?’ and ‘how does the pump work?’” Lexi recalled. “After a while, though they didn’t really notice it anymore.”

Her friends, she said, even are able to tell when her sugar is too high or low and remind her to check her levels.

“It’s a lot for a teenager,” her mother said. But not so much that she is limited in her extracurricular activities. She is active in cheerleading, lacrosse and is a talented singer and pianist.

A fitness trainer and owner of CEFitness in Shrewsbury, Cindy has joined the crusade to fund research and find a cure for diabetes.

The Evangelous family, including brothers Nico, 13, and Gino, 9, will participate in the Step Out Walk to Stop Diabetes at UMass Medical School, 55 N. Lake Ave., Worcester, Saturday, Sept. 26.

To raise money for Team Lexi, Cindy organized exercise events at her studio on June 29, July 29, and Aug. 29, in honor of the 29 million people with diabetes.

“It’s good to get involved,” Cindy said. “There is no cure. We need more research to find one. Everyone wants one.”

To learn more about the walk or to donate to Team Lexi, visit www.diabetes.org/lexi or stepout.diabetes.org.

Short URL: http://www.communityadvocate.com/?p=66087

Posted by on Sep 10 2015. Filed under Byline Stories, Shrewsbury. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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