Survey on Insulin Pumps

Hi All,

I am a master’s student in the Georgia Tech Industrial Design program (Also a T1 Diabetic). I am currently conducting research on the design and usability of insulin pumps.

If you have used a pump, and have a few minutes to take this survey, I’d really appreciate your input!

Anonymous Survey Link:


  • Andy Harper

Hi @AndyH Andy. Welcome to TypeOneNation. I’m a mechanical engineer and machine designer for 31 years now. Hope you like the forum.

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Thanks, @joe ! That’s really cool. I hope to work with (and learn from) some guys like yourself in the near future. I’m sure I’ll have a lot to learn, as well:)

@AndyH Welcome Andy to the JDRF TypeOneNation Forum!

I found your survey to be well constructed and simple to complete - you didn’t have any possible responses that should also have had a “none of these”. I do hope that you receive sufficient response to make your survey relative.

One additional “pump design” shortfall I hear is from females; without pockets, belts, waist-bands, etc., some women have difficulty attaching and/or accessing a pump without practically disrobing. Added to that, some women, not Teresa May, are dressed for a ball, they do not want any diabetes devices visible or causing an additional lump.

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Thanks for the positive feedback, Dennis! I’m very glad to be here.

I also agree that women really face greater challenges when it comes to wearing insulin pumps. Wearability issues could be one of the more meaningful directions that my research takes, if data insights can point me there. So far, I’m grateful for some very honest comments on a range of important issues. I look forward to sharing my work!

Hi @AndyH. I just completed your survey - it was short and sweet, as described. Thanks for doing this, and I wish you well with your study, your studies in general, and your career and overall future. Take care.

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Thank you for taking my survey, @wadawabbit Dorie! I really appreciate your insights and well wishes.

@AndyH Andy Interesting survey. Hopefully some of the current pump manufacturers will benefit from real user commentary, or if you come up with a new pump that does everything but the laundry, do let us know! :smiley:

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Done! I also talked about the skirt issue. So annoying and awkward to be out to dinner reaching up (or down) your skirt to try to get your pump to bolus. :slight_smile: Good times! Good luck with your study and with grad school.

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sometimes I joke it would be nice if I could sew a pocket to my body… I was talking to my endocrinologist once about the pump and showering. She’s like 'oh well you know its waterproof you can take it in the shower?" I said, ya? And where do I put it while in the shower??? Hold it in my teeth??? You don’t think of these things unless you live it right??

I know what you mean, @briew. I don’t actually mind taking mine out to bolus or clear an alert (heck, I’ll yank that puppy out anywhere, although it can be a bit difficult to be discrete about it if it’s tucked into my cleavage😳). I take my pump off while in the shower - may give myself a small bolus before disconnecting. When I got my first pump - a Medtronic - it had a waterproof sports guard with a rubber lid with a slit for tubing. I write it for a while with the strap around my waist, but it’s bulky and unwieldy to shower with. Right now or only other option is the Omnipod - an idea I’ve started toying with - although I do worry what would happen if I didn’t have my remote control. Lots of people use it and are very responsible about making sure they don’t leave home without it. But if I did, or someone were to grab my bag with it inside, I’d be out of luck and out of control. Scary…

I always disconnect to go in the shower and in our hot tub. I’m generally not in that long so it doesn’t seem to matter.

I just think it’s interesting people who don’t live with a pump daily don’t think about things like showering, skirts, so I think it’s cool your conducting this study Andy.

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Thanks, @briew! I feel awkward just taking my pump out when I’m talking to friends or in meetings. The comments I get on my old paradigm are that it looks like a weird pager. I’ve also had one short out from being in a severe rain storm. It’s pretty evident to me that women face some even greater challenges here. I hope I come to some good solutions for us in my published research and design concepts :blush:

Thanks @JanS! The Former is definitely my intent. This may hopefully be something that companies can reference for designing future generations of pumps.
The latter? well hey, :bow_and_arrow: :waxing_gibbous_moon:

You have hit the nail on the head. Females are left out of the design loop. The new hinged Medtronic pump clips are a disaster. They cream when moving. My pump falls off athletic pants and has ripped out my cannula. The hinge crimps the delivery tubing. Ahhhah.

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Sorry, what do they do when moving? Autocorrect can get creative sometimes…

Andy - thanks for the survey. It’s always good to have an opportunity to share the ideas for how we live with our T1D and insulin pumps. I’ve had Type 1 diabetes for 65 years (diagnosed at age 5) and love the new technology.

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Maybe TMI, but the clip likes to catch on my underwear when pulling up my pants because of the extended piece on the top. More than once one of my co-workers has had to bring it to my attention. Have no idea who engineer the thing, but they need to redo it!

Jan, concerning the poor Medtronic hinged pump clip design. Every time the clip crimps the tubing, does not keep the pump from falling off my pant waistband, pulls the infusion set out of my body… I call Medtronic to file an adverse event. Enough people who let Medtronic know the problems with these belt clips the greater the chance they will consult users for a better design. Can’t wait for my warranty expires. Then I’ll go with a tslim.

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The clip creaks when I walk or move.