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[IP] Re: Long time pumpers

>>>hi Linda and all,
I was just wondering how pumping when it was new came about for you all.
Did you ask your endo about it or did your endo say, hey this is new, you
want to give it a try?  Also what was the state of home glucose monitoring
in 1980, and how did you manage to set basals etc. if it was not very
accurate?  I admire all of you for being on the cutting edge!
Deirdre >>>

I figure 18.5 years is a long time, so I'll put my story in here:  My endo
said he wanted to start a core group of about 6 or so on pumps and wanted me
to be one of them. I said, *It won't work for me.* He said, "You are the
type it will work for."  I asked Mom why I felt that way and she said my dr.
at dx said lots of things would come along in my lifetime to help DMers, but
nothing would ever help me. If you have seen the Evolution of Pumps picture
trail site (URL below) you know what my first pump looked like. I didn't
like that idea. I get *tickled* when newbies do not want to be hooked up to
today's *big* pumps! HA!!

Back to my start. It took me a year of vacillating on whether or not to have
this *monster* hooked to me like a flashing advertisement of DM. My feet and
legs hurt so bad from neuropathy I could hardly walk - I took several naps
daily to escape the pain. Two young men had started pumping and each gained
35#. I had to make a decision to either gain that weight, or have my feet
cut off. I figured it'd be easier to buy bigger clothes than to not need
shoes. I chose to pump. I lost 20# - but have since regained it.

Endo then had me test 4x a day with ChemStrip Bgs to prove I could handle
testing. I never tested before '82. He suggested we cut the strips in half
to save $$ - I cut in 1/3s. I know of others who cut them in 1/4s. After
poking, wiping, using the next drip and putting the blood on the strip,
timing exactly 60 sec. and wiping that off, then comparing to a color chart
on the canister, we compared the results. I was checked against lab results
and came in very close - but in steps of 50 or so, no exact numbers. This is
one place I'm upset with that endo. He said, "So what if you read it as 200
and it's actually 186 - you're not going to do anything about it anyway."
WELLLLLL, a BG is not for info only - it may be cause for action. I just
found this out in the last 3 yrs. and it's still hard for me to *act* with a
high BG. I test and write it down. Period. I don't do anything about it.

I chose the CPI/Lilly 9100 pump since the new *small* one was due out - the
size of a king-sized pack of cigarettes. I had the monster one for 6 wks. At
home I had to wake up every 3:00 a.m. to test, and do 7 BGs a day - after my
week stay in the hospital for hookup and 7 lab tests daily. The pump had one
basal setting and that, as far as we knew, was set for life. We could add a
supplemental basal to the basal, but not reduce it - only suspend. The two
CPI/Lillys I had both delivered in whole units only - one bolus recall
without a time stamp. I did that for 10 years until CPI got out of the pump
business and I had to go to another one or I didn't know what. Some of the
pumps had clocks in them to deliver boluses at mealtime. I absolutely
refused getting one with a clock since *I* wanted to be in control. A
MiniMed Rep called me to tell me about their new 506 - he knew I had to do
something. The first thing I asked, "Does it have a clock?" He said, "Yes."
I said I'm not interested. He said, "Wait a minute, you have to hear what
this one does." I listened and was very impressed. 0.1 unit delivery, 6
basal settings, recall and other features. I used that one for 6 years. I
now have a 507C and it's the first one with a name - cuz of you guys!! :)

That second pump had a feature (10 yrs) that I don't think any of the other
ones have that I really miss. I could put in an amount and set it to delay
until when I wanted it delivered - not squared, but delayed. Since the
technology was developed once (or more) I'm sure one of the pump companies
could do it a similar but different way. We have 3 TVs that each have sleep
timers - all three are different - one goes in minute segments down from
1:59:00, another in 10 min. segments up to 90 minutes, and the other in 15
min. segments up or down from 2 hours. Delay is a feature we pumpers would
like. At least I know two of us. YMMV

Deidre, I don't think we knew we were on the cutting edge. Many pumpers back
then did not stay with it. The metal needles were uncomfortable for some of
us - I had problems with pain and bleeding, but *stuck* (pardon the intended
pun) with it. We used Regular beef/pork or Velosulin which was a pure pork
insulin. A couple of years later Velosulin was changed to BR because of its
use in pumps so a buffering was added. We had to (supposedly) wait about 20
min. after bolusing to eat to give the insulin a chance to be effective when
the food was in us. So, walk into McD's and no line - what do you do? Stand
there and wait 20 minutes? hmmmmmm   OR, go to a restaurant and you don't
know when the waitress will wait on you OR bring your food after the order
is taken. That 20 minutes was very hard to judge many times. Even at home,
bolus and the phone rings and you forget the timing....   Humalog/Novolog is
a real boon to pumping.

I do recall how I agonized that year it took me to decide - and that's what
I'm going through now on deciding to get a kidney tx or even *submit* to
dialysis - which should be very shortly - 12% function isn't helping me at
all. Wish endo would have kept us up on things as they progressed. I met
another DMer the other day I've known for about 20 yrs. and he shyly
apologized for enjoying a sundae and *adding enough insulin to cover it.*
For shame! I explained if a non-DMer does that, their pancreas will add
enough insulin to cover it so why shouldn't he with a bolus. (~_^)

\(/ Jan (62 y/o, T-1 11/5/50, pmpg 8/23/83) & Bluda Sue (MM507C 3/99)
http://maxpages.com/bludasue AND http://www.picturetrail.com/dmBASHpics
(including an album of the EVOLUTION OF INSULIN PUMPS)

"Forgive me for the long letter. I didn't have time to write a short one." -
Mark Twain - or - George Bernard Shaw - or - Pascal - or the real author
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