Insulin pump help needed

I just started using the Dexcom g5 cgm system and love it. But I am buying them from individuals. I was interested in learning about pumps that can work with the Dexcom g5 sensors/transmitters. I have never been on a pump and wanted to know if anyone has sourced the pumps or insulin that goes into the pumps from individuals before. But I wondered how great it would be if I could use a pump. I know not going through insurance is probably impossible to do but thought that someone on here may be able to educate

I do know how horrible it is not to get them from a pharmacy so please don’t feel that you need to educate me about the troubles with mishandling insulin or laws that prevent people from selling it. I am very aware and just have to do what I can to survive.

Thanks in advance for any advice about pumps you can give.

@Acole pumps are great, for me, because I can program my basal rate and it is not a shot that lasts 24 hours. I can therefore program my pump to the most appropriate basal rate. I can also change a basal rate anytime, for example I can sit on the couch watching netflix for half a day, then get up and ride my bike the other half. that is really hard to do on shots alone.

The insulin used is R (regular) or Humalog, Novolog, Apidra, which are the faster insulins. You don’t use or need a long acting insulin on a pump.

Pumping is the most expensive. Not only will you need a pump, but you will need the consumables (a insulin reservoir to hold the pump insulin, and a infusion system). In the worst case, these are both individual and separate. and require separate prescriptions.

now you are welcome to go ahead and get your pump training on line via Medtronic, Tandem or Omnipod. They have all of the details.

What you cant do is buy one without a script. And you cant solicit for one or for sensors here.

Hi @Acole. Welcome to the forum and thanks for writing in. I’ve been using a pump for over 30 years now and have never looked back. While pumps are generally considered the best way to manage Type 1 diabetes, some people do fine with shots, and even prefer them. However, they can be an expensive proposition although a worthwhile one.
As someone already said, you must have a prescription from your doctor in order to get a pump (technically you should have one for CGM sensors as well but people do manage to get those “under the table”).
As for insurance, you can get CGMS and pumps without them, but they are very costly.
I use Dexcom with my TSLIM pump and it also works with one called Omnipod. I suggest you contact Dexcom - you can fill out a form online and let them know about your interest and they can give you details. But they will need an RX to get you started.
There is a “CGM” called the Freestyle Libre. I use quotes because it does not have alerts, which are critical for some of us. It works differently because rather than giving you an updated reading on your receiver every 5 minutes, as Dexcom does, the transmitter stores up to 8 hours of readings until you swipe the receiver. Those readings updated since the last swipe then appear on the receiver display. The nice thing about it is, even if you are away from the receiver for a while (up to 8 hours) it keeps the readings; whereas if you are away from your Dexcom receiver for a while there will be gaps. I’ve used the Libre and actually found it more convenient than my pump when I needed to see my numbers - I could swipe and see how I was doing without pushing a sequence of buttons. But again it does not have alarms. The out of pocket cost is much less than Dexcom’s though, and each sensor lasts for 2 weeks.
I hate to discourage you but as I understand it the G5 is being discontinued sometime in the next few months. So you would need to get the complete kit - sensors, transmitter and receiver for the G6.
I do hope things with out for you with your CGM and pump. Don’t feel pressured to pump if shots are working for you.
Wishing you the best.

Thanks for your response Wanda. It helps to hear good and bad for sure.

Andrew @Acole, all insulin pumps approved for use in the USA are designed specifically for use of Aspart Insulin, and/or Insulin Lispro - both “Rapid-Acting” insulin which is different from “Fast-Acting” insulin" . The rapid-acting insulin is designed to micro-manage diabetes, and is definitely not the best choice for all persons with diabetes - in some people, it causes more harm than good…

To answer your first question, there are not any currently marketed pumps in the US that “work-with” the DexCom G5 sensor. There is much written about what an insulin pump will do, and how it may be best used; I suggest that you make yourself aware by self-teaching unless you prefer the normal route of physician advice.

Andrew, I have been using the Omni Pod for years and love it, am also using the Dexcom 6. Are you un insured? Both of my units are covered. I have Cigna and they have a great diabetic program , Check them out Please. Hope this helps. Bye Jan

Dennis and Janice,
Thanks for your thoughts. I have done some research and it seems the regular fast acting “novolog” that I take along with my “Lantus” long lasting does not work the same as the insulin used in pumps. That is good to know as I was trying to figure out if I could refill the pump with my current insulin. I actually do have insurance but before they will pay anything at all the deductible of $6,500 has to be paid. That kind of removes me from sourcing pumps or cgm or even insulin from a pharmacy. On a good note I did learn recently my novolog is available in Canada. My $490 prescription in the us is only $79 in Canada at Wal-Mart. It doesn’t even require a prescription as the Canadians realize no one buys insulin for any other reason than to survive. But the cost difference shocked me. So no more sourcing insulin through questionable ways.
Again thank you guys for taking the time to help me figure it all out.
Be safe

Hi @Acole. Actually Novolog and Humalog are both used in pumps - at least I can speak for the TSLIM, which I use. A year or so ago my insurance changed their approved rapid acting insulin from Novolog to Humalog - I imagine they got a better price - I found it worked the same. However, everyone is different and some people do respond better to one than the other.

I’ll correct your misunderstanding Andrew @Acole.

Regular insulin should NOT be used in an insulin pump - pumps [since 200] are designed solely for use of RAPID-Acting insulin. Fast-acting, such as “regular”, and rapid-acting, such as Novolog, are not the same thing.

I very strongly suggest, is you are considering using a pump, that you access the marketing websites - about a half-dozen - and download and study pump features, pump operations, and pump warning notices.

Thanks for the follow up. Strange how much difference the word rapid and fast can change things. I had given up on the possibility for me to use a pump but your knowledge has encouraged me to dig further into the differences in pumps and also the insulin used. Thanks again