Hi. I am new here and signed up because I literally just got word from Medtronic that I was approved for the pump. I should have it in one week.
I hope to think I have done extensive research since I have really been thinking about this the last 4 or so months (well really since I was first diagnosed in 1998). I have one friend on it for the 18 years that I have known him and he loves it. I have another friend that absolutely hated it because she constantly had faulty supplies and bad scar tissue. She actually switched back to injections.
Seeing the comments here still does not convince me one way or the other on how I feel about the device. I think I will just have to make my own decision. I apologize if you all have already written all over this page about your experience, but can you guys/gals let me know some of your good and bad experiences you have had?
I am sure, like with any consumer good product, there will always be good and bad, it’s just a matter of weighing them.
My friend that has had it for 18 years swears by it and his A1C was around 6. My last two were around 8. I know there are other issues, i.e. better self control on my end, but in general I like the idea of the pump helping with this.
My other concern is exercise. On any given Saturday I bike ride 4 - 6 hours, sometimes very far from civilization. So how do I adjust the pump for those times? Any other cyclists here using the pump? What have your experiences been?
Sorry for the dragged out post. I am both excited and nervous about this.
Welcome to life as a pumper! I too was diagnosed in 1998 (at age 12) and started using a pump less than a year later. I wouldn’t have it any other way!
It has kept me healthy and happy
It’s convenient and allows for more freedom in every aspect of life
Infusion site issues (but these days there are many different infusion sets and one of them is bound to work for you!)
Having something attached to you 24/7 may be hard to get used to. (At this point, the pump feels just like any other body part)
When it comes to exercising, I typically set a temporary basal rate to deliver less insulin for an hour before and during the hours I am exercising. And as with injections, I always pack extra supplies and even a back-up insulin pen just in case of emergencies.
And you’re right- there’s pros and cons to using a pump, but in my opinion, the pros far outweigh the cons. In my experience, it was very much trial and error. Good luck!
The pump was life changing for me…I hated to give myself 5-6 injections a day especially having to find the privacy at work and excusing myself in meetings!
Today…it’s easy…and less painful! You will need to change your cassette every three days and you don’t even feel it! You do have to deal with being attached via tubing which is not visible to any one except you. Be careful when trying on clothes as sometimes I forget my pump and tubing is is attached to my clothes … lol!
When taking a shower, remove your pump and tubing but keep your pump on…do not turn off.
The pump is very easy to use and allows for you to be in better control. As far as exercising …when they set up the pump for you ask your Endocrinologist or Diabetes Nurse/Educator what percentage of a temporary basil is best for you . I run quite a bit and have found decreasing my basal an hour before as well as during my run works well. However , sometimes your blood sugar may go up with exercise. But you can control your ups and downs easily with the pump . I like to bring starburst or skittles with me just in case I have any lows everywhere I go in general.
You will be taught how to manage your pump but it is important to have monthly or frequent check ins with your Diabetes team to monitor your progress and adjust your settings if needed.
I would never go back to injections as this was not the best solution for me. Everyone has to do what works for them…good luck …reach out for support…you are never alone! Medtronic has a 24 hour hotline for you if needed to ask questions.
I think you can make anything work if you put enough effort into it. I did shots for 29 years before I switched to a pump and for me it was better; mostly because I am not a slave to a basal rate from a long acting injection. the second best reason for me is because I can micro manage (correct for a blood sugar of 120 for example - on shots I wouldn’t bother) and third, because I can learn how to eat “mixed carb” foods I like for example pizza, when I decide to.
that first reason was huge for me because I like to ride my bike, and when I ride, I only need 1/10 meal bolus and almost no basal insulin. can’t do that with a shot. at about 2 hours after a good ride I can set my basal back to the usual and I am fine, and I am fine without drinking 3 liters of juice chasing lows.
the pump isn’t magic, it isn’t perfect, and it has it’s own set of problems, most notably because you don’t typically use long acting insulin anymore, so you are more prone to dka if a infusion site gets “wonky” and you aren’t paying attention. never happened to me but I do get a bad infusion site once in a while. good luck and post often. there is a lot of pump experience here.
oh yea, i “fired” my pump trainer and bought the book “Pumping Insulin” by John Walsh and Ruth Roberts. I almost quit pumping because of the extremely over-cautious methods my trainer was using. My a1c went up (the one right after I started my pump). it is a bit like re-learning everything after you switch. You have to decide if all the extra learning is worth it before you start and give a realistic amount of time, say 9 months, before making a decision. If I didn’t my pump would have been in the trash!
Thanks for the replies. Joe, I have seen a lot of people referencing “Pumping Insulin.” I think I will pick it up.
I should have the Pump in hand on Wednesday. Not sure when I will be meeting with the trainer but I will be sure to post here how it goes once I am using it.
the strangest feeling for me was the first morning after starting the pump: No “Lantis Alarm” and no shot for breakfast… good luck!!