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Brentwood mom and son are some of the first to try artificial pancreas

(Fox 17 News)

No one who looks at 9-year-old Canon and his mom Kerry Kiser can tell that anything is wrong.

The third grader and his mom both wear an artificial pancreas because their own immune systems attacked their once-healthy pancreas. Both have Juvenile Diabetes or Type One.

"It's just an autoimmune disease," Kerry Kiser said. "Something attacked our bodies. We're not quite sure what it was.”

Canon was diagnosed at 19 months. His mom was diagnosed six months later as an adult. Monitoring their blood sugar means life or death including all night long.

Neither or them have had a full night's sleep in eight years until this medical breakthrough.

“Before, we were waking up at least three times a night," Kiser said.

Canon esaid he loves hockey and baseball, but being an active boy makes managing his blood sugar even more challenging.

Canon and Kerry demonstrated how the continuous glucose monitor on their arms check blood sugar every five minutes and then it tells the pump what your blood sugar is. The pump gives glucose if the Type 1 diabetic needs it.

Mary Lyn Schuh with the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation has been working diligently with her organization to fund this research and see it to fruition.

“Back in 2005, there was some argument about whether or not this concept could even work," Schuh said. "Could it be done successfully using technology to imitate what the pancreas does?”

Fox 17 News profiled a patient in the human trial several years ago. He’s one of thousands along with the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation who refused to give up.

Canon and his mom are so grateful they didn't.

“To have something like this to look after your best interest is amazing," Kiser said.

There is a JDRF Type One Nation Summit Saturday Jan. 20 at Embassy Suites in Franklin from 8 a.m.-4 p.m with lunch included.

There will be 15 break out sessions to better learn how to manage Type One. The maker of the artificial pancreas, Medtronic, will also be there. If you’d like to go, click here for registration info.

You can also call 615-383-6781 with questions.

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