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[IP] RE: Cartridge changes

>Ryan, the subject is reusing reservoirs.  No one i know has ever 
>reused a catheter.  

Sorry, Wayne.  I thought you were referring to set changes, since that is what 
I was referring to when the thread originally started.  Someone else turned it 
into a reservoir issue (which wasn't the issue to begin with).  ;-)

But, as long as we are discussing this now...

> how long one can leave it in is a very YMMV 
>thing as we know.  Lots of people do quite well with 4 days, while 
>some only can do 2.  You are your own doc here.  If you find a site 
>not working after 4 days, then maybe you might get smart and say well 
>maybe i should start changing after 3 days. 

 Developing scar tissue has nothing to do with how long a site lasts. You might
be able to leave in a infusion set for 10 days without losing 
 effectiveness...regardless, starting around 3 days, your body may/will start to
develop scar tissue.  The effect of this won't be noticed immediately.  Over 
the course of 10 years, however, this can lead to sites becoming ineffective.  
Changing out a site every 3 days helps to avoid or minimize this effect in the 
long term.  

It is kind of like your eyesight.  We don't notice gradual effects, which is 
why we are careful and have annual check-ups, etc.  They can catch a problem 
long before you can visually detect it.  It is the same thing with the scar 
tissue...by the time you start to notice any effect of leaving the sites in 
longer means the damage has already been done.  Changing your site out ever 3 
days will help to avoid that in the LONG term (or, in the very least, minimize 
it).  It is also medically recommended to wait at least 30 days before 
returning to the same infusion site for the same reason.  I have a rotation 
 scheme where I do each infusion site about 2 inches away from each other, first
 very low on the abdomen on the left side, then going back on the left side, but
doing it higher up.  Then, after I have gone done both the upper and lower, I 
switch sides.  This gives me about 15 days, roughly, per side, while always 
keeping a distance of about 2 inches from any previous site.

> it's a no brainer. 
>but the recommendation not to reuse a reservoir is marketing, just 
>like the recommendation to use a fresh lancet for each poke.  I bet 
>you don't listen to the "healthcare professionals" on that 
>- -wayne

Actually, the recommendation not to reuse a reservoir is not JUST 
marketing...some of it is carryover from earlier days.  Some of the older 
reservoirs used materials that, over time, sort of reduce the effectiveness of 
the insulin.  This has been changed in the last 5 years, because they use a 
different material (no longer just PVC).  So, there was a much more medical 
reason to change the reservoirs than there is today.  (This doesn't apply if 
 you used glass reservoirs). Anyhow, MM packages the reservoirs separately from
the infusion sets for the very reason of letting you change your reservoirs 
separately from your infusion sets.  So, actually, "marketing" has allowed you 
 to do the very thing that you are saying "marketing" is telling you not to do.

I, personally, have found it easier to just change the reservoir when I change 
the infusion set.  There is no reason to do so other than the fact that I 
forget to save the plunger and bottle connector.  :-)  After all this talk, 
however...I'm going to try to start doing it.  Reservoirs, however, are 
actually relatively cheap compared to the infusion sets, so it isn't a HUGE 
savings.  (Perhaps $200 a year...but, hey...every little bit helps!)

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