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Freedom!?

Discussion in 'Insulin Pump Forum' started by Stuboy, Aug 21, 2008.

  1. Stuboy

    Stuboy · Well-Known Member

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    I've heard people talking about how much 'Freedom' you gain when you start pumping.

    After seeing the doctor this morning about the "depression" her analysis was that it's not depression, that it's me getting overwhelmed with everything we need to cope with and think about constantly that's getting me down.

    She mentioned that the nurse had told her I was interesting in pumping, and she's refering me back to the consultant at the hospital to talk about the overnight monitoring (haven't got a clue what's going on over night) and about possibly starting on the pump (not getting my hope up with that one :( ).

    Anyway, i was wondering, from the horses mouth so to speak. HOW does the pump give you more freedom? In what sense? I mean you still have to think about how much insulin for this, how much for that, what's my BS doing blah blah blah? Carrying everything around with you etc. Doesn't sound very free in my mind... I was wondering if you guys already on the pump could tell me how different it is and why it gives you more freedom?

    I'd like to have my arguments for the pump together to put a good argument forward if i need to. On top of the low A1c's with hypo's and high A1c's with out (even though that should be enough, humph!)

    Thanks
    Stu
     
  2. Katharine

    Katharine · Well-Known Member

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    We considered a pump but didn't go for it.

    A pump has some advantages and some disadvantages. Considering that you are attached to it the whole time and you still have to carry back up supplies with you in case of pump failure, I would agree that "freedom" isn't one of the pumps virtues.
     
  3. iHs

    iHs · Well-Known Member

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    Hi Stu

    A pump does have its pros but it also has its cons too.

    I think I have to agree with what Katherine has said about them in her previous posts.

    If you would like to find out much more about them, then do register with the UK Insulin Pump forum and then you will be able to read all the messages that get posted. Also, before you decide one way or another to have one, do attend an Input meeting where you will be able to see the reps demonstrating their pumps and talk to pump users.

    In the meantime, if you are injecting into your tummy, give that area a complete rest and use your arms, legs and backside. For comfort use, infusion sets are best sited in the tummy as that is the best area where they wont get disturbed too much by friction of clothes. They do need to be replaced approx every 2-4 days depending on how well you can control your bg levels and how your skin reacts to the adhesive plaster.
     
  4. bonerp

    bonerp · Well-Known Member

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    OK I found that when I first went on a pump I carried my test kit, spare cannulas, injections and all sorts. Now I dont bother. One occassion it ran out of insulin on a night out was my own stupid fault cos I didnt replace it before I went out! I just had to pop home to change it D'oh. If a cannula blocks at work, I change it at work and just keep a couple of spare ones in my drawer there.

    I also keep spare ones in my car too.

    Unless Im going away any distance I dont take my supplies. It all works out ok.

    Sometimes when swimming I dont want to wear it or have a cannula in either - dont fancy people looking at me like some medical freak - so I take it all off for a hour or so and dose a bit extra after.

    At the beach next week I will not use the pump during the day - will go back onto insulin - insultard and novorapid for me. Works well but again its not as easy as being hooked up cos when I eat something I'll have to have an injection rather than hit a couple of buttons.

    So that leads me onto the final thing - dosing. Its easy. If you have a problem with maths get a pump with a built in bolus wizard. Mine doesnt but I have a head full of grey matter so working out 1 unit per 10 cards is not tough! 100 carbs at 1/10 ratio = 10 units to bolus. By the time id have the thing out of my pocket and entered that lot Id have managed to work that one out! Maybe a bit trickier if your dose isnt whole numbers.....

    Thats the flexible bit - I wont call it freedom cos that implies a miracle cure! It means you can graze on food and not have to stick to rigid eating patterns. The other thing thats good is you can customise your basal rate so if you suffer from the dawn phonomomnemmeome.....your pump can handle this.

    You can also set up gym day profiles or lazy day profiles. Thats the bonus factor. Its certainly not freedom though, being hooked up 24/7. For showers etc just unhook it. For strenuous activity you can set a reduced temporary basal rate. If you are ill you can increase it as required.

    See if your hospital has loan pumps to try....

    Also you'll need to be able to carb count before being given a pump and have had to try this out on MDI.

    Good luck. Anything else just ask.
    Paul
     
  5. Stuboy

    Stuboy · Well-Known Member

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    thanks for the replies, Hearing all the comments definatly makes me want a pump even more! I think the "freedom" comes from the not having to worry as much. free's your mind to think about other things for a change i guess.

    time will tell, i will ask and see what the response is... ill keep you updated!
     
  6. miss e j

    miss e j · Member

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    Hi Stu,

    I agree that there are pros and cons, but for me the biggest freedom is the freedom from hypos. Long acting insulin used to be the bane of my life causing all sorts of hypos - especially at night. I've been on the pump over 2 months now and have only had a few hypos.

    On the negative side, the lifestyle change and the learning curve are overwhelming at first. I know others on here would tell me to pull my socks up, but I felt so overwhelmed by all the new info, and tnhe cannula problems I had and the fact that every problem was a brand new one, that I found myself feeling very upset for the first 2 weeks, and this was tough. Diabetes became the major focus of my entire life again, and I didn't like it! but I never once considered going back to MDI - so I think that's very telling, and I somehow knew it was just something i had to get through, and that it would be worth it in the end.

    Good luck, and I don't think anyone should feel bad if their diabetes gets them down - we never ever get a break from it and that's tough!

    Cheers,
    Emily
     
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