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Re: [IP] Teflon Allergy & Bg Target Qs

Laurel & Wayne Sedgwick wrote:
> Hi, again.
> Has anyone here experienced an allergy to the teflon cannula (as opposed to
> various types of tape)?  My CDE says this is possible, though rare.

Can't say I have, or heard of it either.
> My SofSet site has started itching again, and now that I don't have so much
> tape on it, it seems to me that the itch is definitely located under the
> "wings," if not right where the cannula is!
> The site is not sore or red, so I'm not worried about infection, and my
> blood sugars have been responding acceptably.  The itch is not intolerable,
> but it is not insignificant either.

I'd say that you may just need to get used to it. Many new pumpers have 
various minor sensations around the infusion site, but they seem to settle
down within a few days or a week. 
> If I do have an allergy to the cannula, is switching to a bent needle
> likely to help?  The section in PUMPING INSULIN that discussed skin
> irritation seemed to me to be suggesting that a metal needle was *more*
> likely to cause irritation than a teflon cannula.

Possible, but give it a week or two first. Anyway, the bent needles are
likely to cause mechanical irritation, because the skin is flexible and the
needle causes some damage when it gets forced sideways by movement.
> Which brings me to my second question.  When you first started pumping,
> what sorts of preliminary blood sugar goals were you given?  Right now my
> team doesn't want me to go below 140 and considers 250 acceptable.  

I was sent home from the hospital at about 250, but that was based on me
not being able to get it lower because of the inactivity I lived in at
the hospital. Goals were set to get it between 120 and 130 for the start, and
lower it progressively after that to get as close to 100 as practical,
given my active and varied lifestyle.

I have
> a tendency to go low easily, and they are concerned that I not get into
> rollercoasting, but this still seems pretty high to me.  

OK, thing is it's best to get iot stable at a higher bg, then fine tune it 
down so the body gets used to it and doesn't start the roller-coaster.
WHen you've been higher as normal and suddenly push it way down the body will
react as if you were going hypo because of the RATE of change, not the amount.
So it's likely best for any diabetic to move the average down gradually, 
likely staying at every level for a week or more, then lowering it again
in stages. 

Also, what is a
> normal target Bg or Bg range for an established pumper?  Or is this a
> totally YMMV sort of thing? I have been told that mine will be 140, but
> again that sounds kind of high.  (Of course, on MDI, I would have KILLED
> for a consistent 140!)

Once you get the 140 level stable you'll want to experiment to see if the
greater stability avoids the roller-coaster for you. Just be careful and 
give it some time so you get it right, OK?

Ted Quick
email @ redacted

Insulin-Pumpers website http://www.bizsystems.com/Diabetes/
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