Too skinny for a pump?

I'm not sure if that is exactly what the endo was saying today, but he was feeling around on my son's abdomen and scowling and muttering something about how difficult my son would probably find a pump and a CGM to be until he put on more weight---which the endo expects him to naturally do.  The endo isn't considering a pump yet anyway because my son's pancreas is still helping him out.  (A1Cs so far have been 13.? at dx in April; 11.3 in mid May; 6.4 in mid July; 6.6 today)  The nurse even pondered how he finds anything to pinch up to give shots in his legs.  Anyway, has anyone encountered this before?  Difficulty or discomfort with a pump or CGM because of lack of body fat?  My son was just under 5'4" and 85 pounds at dx in April.  He is now 5'6.5" and 110 pounds.  I wish I was.

I had to gain a few pounds to get a pump because I didn't have enough "fat" to put the site. I still am loosing weight though. I weigh about 100 pounds and am 5'1.5". I haven't grown any sadly! I am still the same height I was last year. I feel like a midget when I stand beside my friends because they are so much taller than me! lol. At dx two years ago I was about 4'9" and 80 pounds. I have gained weight but it's all spread out. lol.

well my A1C is basically between 11-13 all the time. i have my pump at my house and now i cant even use it=( hopefully if i get my numbers and my A1C to come down. i think within this month or mid-october i get to actually use my pump. i am 5'3 and i weigh 115. quick question, i heard insulin makes you gain weight, is that correct or just a myth?

cause of like 10 years with diabetes and like 6 on the pump i have tons of dead tissue all over my bodie so i had to gain weight until i could clear up the dead tissue so now im trying to loose the weight cause almost all the dead tissue is gone im 5 and 1/2 inch and im done growing for good(dont ask way to much coffee or something like that) but i weigh like 120 and just have aaron gain some weight he could b on a pump in no time

I am 5'4" and weigh 100 pounds and my endo said nothing when we talked about and even when I started on my pump. I use the Animas Onetouch Ping and I have inset 30s that go in at a 30 degree angle and I usually don't have discomfort unless I hit a blood vessel or something. My endo didn't even consider my weight as a factor.

I used to only be 56 when I was 10 and I used an insulin pump for about a month and hated it because of it's discomfurt because of my lack of fat so I talked to my doctor and she said I shouldn't use the pump anymore until I weighed over 100 lbs. I spent 2 years training hard in the gym getting muscle and not skipping any insulin dosages and eating less carby, but more fatty food and I gained about 50 lbs in 2 years and my body looked amazing. Before, you could see my ribs and I could still wear size 8 girls clothes and I was 5'5". zit stunk but I like my body now and I love the pump. Yes, it is harder to use if you're too skinny

I'm finding the responses to this to be very interesting.  It's had me think though that it must not be so much my son's actual weight, but rather the lack of body fat, so I guess it was irrelevant of me to even post his height/weight.  He's taking nine dance classes and playing Ultimate Frisbee!, so he's about as muscular as you can be when you only weigh 110 pounds.  And he's a guy, so I guess his fat proportions are different from females.?  Do I even have a clue what I'm talking about?  I'm wound up from dance class and I feel like I could write a book right now.  My poor family (parents, siblings, inlaws).  I wrote a HUMONGOUS update on my son's endocrinology visit today and then felt like I was ignoring my other son, so I wrote an even longer family update.  


There are all different gauge needles and angles for thinner people. Don't let them tell you, your son can't be on a pump that is BS. I know for thinner body types the 45 degree angles work well. Some of my friends h ave 0 body fat and use pumps. When I was first diagnosed they put me on the angled infusion sets because I had no fat. (Boy, has that changed LOL) Tell your endo that you would like to try out a couple of them before YOU make the decision not him. I know that if you call the pump companies directly you can get a tryout of the different options to see which one will fit your sons lifestyle best.

How do T1's, especially women keep their weight down!? Since the end of my dance career and college (a span of 3 years), I have gained 33 lbs., have lost 8 so far, but need to lose about 25 more to be where I want to be...and suggestions??? Obcviously I need diet and exercise, but with diabetics is there a certain regimen people found effective?

Angie, I would take Gina's advice. Hopefully he'll stay in dancing and frisbee and won't gain weight like I did! I know guys are different but its SOOO much harder to go up and down in weight because like everything with diabetes, its all an experiment where you have to change your rates constantly and your blood sugars are everywhere.

Weight and body fat, neither of them have anything to do with having a pump. Ask your endo to try some things. Inset 30s, like I said before, are really great for me! I apparently am underweight according to everyone and have no body fat. I have no problem. And if your son has more fat in his butt, he can put the site there!

Angie, my son is 10 and very, very lean as well.  His endo keeps commenting on that, but we are moving forward with a pump in less than two weeks. Yesterday, he tried his first infusion set (angled) and it hurt a little bit at first.  He wore it for an hour and he was fine after the first 5-10 minutes or so. They did suggest using his hip/butt initially though, since he has a bit more "sub-cutaneous tissue" (fat) there.  Would that be an option for your son? As Gina said, if he hasn't already, he should at least be able to try a couple of infusion sets and sites to see if any work out for you guys.  Fingers crossed!

My nine year old daughter has used a pump since she was diagnosed at age four in 2004.  She has had a Medtronic CGM since October 2006.   She is routinely in 10th percentile for weight.  She has very little fat.  

We use the Quickset infusion sets and she doesn't have any trouble with the 6mm canula (I use the 9 mm, as I have more body fat). 

I know a lot of endos like to wait six months before starting pump therapy, but I don't think your son's weight should be a restraint.  If he wants it, I say go for it... the pump companies can help you find the correct infusion set for your son's body type.

When i went on pump treatment i gained like 35 pounds in a few months.  when i was his 15 i was around 120 and i ran xcross country and ws very active.  at my age now i am fat and i dont work out so all i do is eat and take insulin.  high bgs are helping get rid of the wieght.  his a1cs are great i love 6's.  they have a short needle six 6mm that would be his size for the pump.  you can put the pump in his but i know lots of kids that do that, and girls put them in their breast.  Have you thought about a camp for him.  hope some of this will help you relax.  ive been doing this for 25 years and pump for 8yrs good luck 

Hey Lauren,

I've been told from my doctor that I may need to work out a little more than I typically would to keep from gaining weight. I've read that insulin "holds on" to your fat. I don't think that it really makes you gain weight unless you never exercise, I just think it holds on to any fat you might have and makes it harder to lose weight. Of course I could be wrong, it's just something I've read here and there.

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There are options out there that can cause things to work for your son if you wanted to try a pump. I mean not having a lot of fat could make it a little harder but it will work out in the end. I use the inset 30 as well as I am slender (still have fat) but not tons of it. I have a kid that plays lacrosse in my youth group who uses a different infusion set which is just a needle under the skin. He uses it as he is basically a solid person, muscle and very little fat and he has no issues with it as well. It just depends on how things work and if your son would be willing to experiment to find the right solution.

I have always been a thin persona nd I was diagnosed at 12.  My daughter is the same and was diagnosed and started the pump at age 5.  We both use a siloutte from Minimed.  It is very low angle like 15 degrees so you can esentially put it anywhere.  If there is little fat to be found generally the abdomen and the top of the butt works great- especially for thin boys.  It isn't impossible and don't be scared that it will hurt.  Emma uses EMLA cream a numbing cream under a bandaid for 45 minutes prior to insertion.  we wipe it off,she crosses her fingers tight and never feels a thing.

Good luck!  Also Emma started on the pump 3 months after diagnosis and it has worked out great.

I never really gave much thought to using a numbing cream. Just out of idle curiosity does the cream smell and how long do you leave it on for? Not that I plan on using it, but it is always good to put knowledge in my head. Who knows when I might need to know that information.

Generally, a healthy body fate amount for females is between 13-15% body weight; healthy males usually have between 8% and 11%. I dance on a regular basis, and exercise throughout the week. My body fat count is 4% of my body weight, and I wear a pump. When I took injections, I used insulin pens, and had the smallest needle size possible to avoid bruising. I had to stop injecting in my legs and my stomach because I don't have enough sub-cutaneous fat to inject there. But I place my pump sites on my abdomen, and I haven't hurt from it yet....

It may be "to each their own...."

We're getting on a plane for the first time with the pump next month, so this was good to hear! I did read on the Animas website (I think that's where...) that you shouldn't go through the metal detector or the scanners with the pump. I thought we'd take it off and put it in the basket or something. Maybe it's not a big deal? I thought maybe the electronics would somehow interfere with the pump. Maybe not?