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Insulin Pumps

Discussion in 'Insulin Pump Forum' started by Melissa20, Jul 7, 2021.

  1. Melissa20

    Melissa20 · Member

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    Hello!

    I’ve been diabetic for about 6.5 years now and I’m wanting to do more research around using insulin pumps instead of injections! My main reason is around lumps/lipohypertrophy caused by my injections. Has anyone experienced this and noticed improvements when using a pump?

    Also, are insulin pumps easy to hide?

    Would love to hear people’s experiences and pros and cons of using them!

    I’m in the UK, thank you!
     
  2. In Response

    In Response Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    The best people to talk to are your diabetes team. They will be able to. tell you how likely it is that you will qualify for an insulin pump and which pumps are on offer in your area. Unfortunately, it is a postcode lottery.

    This depends upon your size, your clothing and the pump you have.
    I used to have a tubed pump which for me, was difficult to hide so I felt my diabetes was always on display.
    I am now using a smaller patch pump controlled via my smart phone which is far more discrete.

    If you are slight and wear tight clothing it is a challenge to hide a pump, especially a tubed pump which you may need to extract every time you bolus.
    If you are larger (I understand many women keep their pumps in their bra), wear looser clothing and have a pump which can be controlled remotely, a pump is easier to hide.

    I remember when I got my first pump and was told how the team were involved in a wedding where no one knew that the bride was wearing a pump. They showed a photo of a beautiful bride wearing a meringue dress with a huge bow in the back. The bow was designed to hide the pump.
     
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  3. Melissa20

    Melissa20 · Member

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    That’s great! Thank you
     
  4. searley

    searley Type 1 · Moderator
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    The biggest problem will be if you qualify first

    And yes you will still get lumps.. and maybe scars where the cannula has been
     
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  5. Chas C

    Chas C Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Lumps are an issue when injecting as its hard to remember where you have been so you can properly rotate your jabs so your not repeating the same area too close in time.

    Pumps will help with that as you can see where the old cannula is/has been so you can move the site, however I'd think you'd need other reasons for justifying a pump too like overnight control etc.

    Pumps can be easy to use but you will need to prepare for the first few weeks/months being a lot of work stabilising your bolus's and likely you'll need to got on a DAFNE/BERTIE type course too for carb counting even if you've already done one.

    I don't really try to hide my pump so I'm no help on this front, but there are plenty of other ladies on here who can give you tips.

    Personally I think pumps are great and wish I'd moved much earlier when first offered instead of waiting 10 yrs because I was more worried about having something hanging off me.
     
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  6. searley

    searley Type 1 · Moderator
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    The issue with a pump is that the cannula is in place for 3 days injecting upto 300 units into the 1 spot
     
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  7. Chas C

    Chas C Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Yes it is interesting, I've never had an issue over 10 years with a pump but was always having issues with pens. I suspect (but no proof or evidence) that large doses of long lasting injected by pen with poor site rotation was possibly the cause for me. Also re-injecting into a site that has not had a chance to recover too.
     
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  8. searley

    searley Type 1 · Moderator
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    Non site rotation is the biggest reason.. I made the mistake of not rotating enough to start with and got fatty lumps

    Currently with pump I get a lump the size of a 5 pence that stays for some weeks

    I was thinking of trying a different cannula next time to see if that makes a difference

    But I do read in other places where users constantly ask where else the can put a cannula other than the belly due to scarring and fat lumps

    So again I think it’s a case of different people different experience
     
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  9. NicoleC1971

    NicoleC1971 Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    I like my pump (Roche insight) and don't have much problem with lumps possibly because I am not injecting large basal doses into one place at one time. Also I tend to do small boluses for meals due to low carb diet. Hourly basal for me is under 1 unit. I normally know if I have hit a lump as it bleeds and feels bruised. The other thing is the canulas vary but if you have the soft ones this must help you wear the canula 24/7 for 3-4 days without inflamation.
    Now swapping to Dexcom + Tandom Basal IQ so I can try out auto corrective doses. This happens to be a small pump too.
    I wear my pump in a crop top bra (doing a lot of exercise) and I don't think it is obvious but as others have pointed out you couldn't wear a lycra catsuit and conceal it! Nor is it terribly obvious and you can invest in specialist underwear or a pump belt to wear it unobtrusively.
     
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  10. searley

    searley Type 1 · Moderator
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    I have the tandem with control iq

    I is a small pump and easy to hide when wanted

    I slip mine in my jeans pocket most of the time when not at work

    I have a Lycra sports belt that has a phone pocket that I wear under a shirt when I really want to hide it

    When at work I just use a belt holster as it’s easier to access the pump

    The first thing for @Melissa20 to do would be confirm if eligible for a pump before researching too much and setting the heart on something that can’t have

    If the care team says yes.. ask what pumps are available in your area..
     
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  11. NicoleC1971

    NicoleC1971 Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Thanks and glad you find the T slim to be easy to wear. I keep mentioning it in posts because I am excited to be taking a step up with the closed looping tech!
    As I recall the hoops to jump through didn't include lipdystrophy lumps but were instead:
    • Night time hypos needing help to treat
    • Lifestyle making it hard to control sugars that would benefit from pump options (temporary basal rate, flexibility over hourly drip of insulin, extended boluses etc.). Mine was being active and finding that hard to mange.
    • Having too many lows or too many highs
    • And I suspect being thought able to cope with the technical side of it hence the need to have gone on a carb counting course so that you can accurately use the tech to calculate a bolus dose...

    The consultants do seem keen to help but this kit is more expensive than MDI
     
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  12. Chas C

    Chas C Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Agreed, but I do find site rotation a lot easier with a pump. Maybe its just me but I leave old cannula in place before inserting new (so I know where I've just been) then work my way across my stomach in rows starting one side at top and then working across row by row. When done I move to arms for few weeks then back to stomach. It works really well for me. I've not used my legs for perhaps 25yrs so could fall back on these maybe if I get issues (which I'm not). BTW I do remove the old cannula after I've put the new one in place ;-)
     
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  13. richyb

    richyb Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    I use an insight pump with soft flexible canula. Like it a lot, a bit slow with the remote handset but works well.
    I did improve lumps by slowing down the insulin bolus speed. I am now on slowest speed, so takes over a minute to deliver, say 5 units. By doing this it gives the area more time to dissipate the bolus going in
     
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