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[IP] New Pumper wonders where is the pump benefit ?
Gary E. from Denver, Colorado
I am a 52 year old diabetic diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes at age 18. I
have been on multiple injections until about two months ago when I
started using the Minimed Model 508-insulin pump. Previously my control
has been good with A1Cs typically below 7 and no changes in my diabetic
retinopathy for several years. The most serious problem I have had has
been too many lows. This was the main reason for switching to the pump.
Now after nearly two months on the pump, I can say I am not a happy
pumper. I don't feel my lifestyle has improved at all; if anything I feel
more constrained and dependent on plastic tubing. I currently have eight
basal rates running each twenty-four hours. I am counting carbs and have
to use different computations depending on the mealtime. I have had lots
of insertion site problems where the cannals get bent after a day or two.
(I'm currently using the Micro set; before I was using the ultimate.)
Recently two of my diabetic friends started using Lantis, a one shot per
24 hour long-acting insulin with a curve that looks like a square wave.
It doesn't seem to have the negatives that NPH insulin does. Both friends
seem very happy and have said the problems with lows they had with NPH
are not present with Lantis.
If I do a cost/benefit analysis I think for the cost for the disposable
plastic items and the time I spend changing out the sets (every couple of
days), high blood sugars from bent cannals, it seems like a lot of
trouble for little benefit.
My problem is I think I have an "attitude problem." I just don't see pump
users having these problems. They all say their lives are better on the
pump. I feel more constrained. If I exercise too much, the dressings seem
to get irritated or I bend the wrong way and the cannula gets bent and I
have to replace the set.
What am I missing ? Please tell me what you think
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