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Kids at school with an Omnipod.

Discussion in 'Parents of Children with Type 1' started by JeremysDad, Oct 19, 2010.

  1. JeremysDad

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    Jeremy should be getting his Omnipod within a week to 10 days. Once he gets it, its off to the CDE for a 2 hour class. In the meantime, I have been wondering what other kids are doing at school to ensure their supply of insulin is constant in the event of a pod failure.

    Here is what I was thinking. Give Jeremy a spare pod or two, pre-filled with insulin in case the one he is wearing stops working or the cannula comes out. I was going to give him a Novolog pen as well as a backup. If Novolog lasts about 28 days unrefrigerated, he would have to use the spare pods or bring them home every 2 weeks or so. Perhaps he could keep them in his backpack which comes home every day anyway.

    What do other kids do to ensure they have spare pods at the ready in case they are needed? Can you pre-fill them?

    Also, what do kids do when they are at a friends house or away from home for an extended amount of time. Do they pack a spare pod and insulin or is better to have pre-filled pods in a grab bag that can be taken with them.

    I guess the freedom of wearing a pod comes with a similar amount of planning as MDI.

    Is it the norm to have a backup PDM? At $500, it's not cheap.
     
  2. Flutterby

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    We aren't using a pod but we just keep extra sets at school.. K can't change her site herself so they call me (she had one pulled out last week, I just went and put in a new one, but I didn't have to stop athome first because they had the sites at school.). In your situation, if he can change his pod out himself I'd keep novolog in the fridge (and unopened one) and a pod in his stuff.. if you need to change the stuff for him you can do the same thing, or just keep everything at home.
     
  3. khannen

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    My daughter pods but is only 6 yrs old. She has extra test strips and pdm batteries at school. As for extra pods and insulin, I just keep it at home. Our home is literally 5 minutes from school. Since the school year started in July (year round school here), she has needed two pods changes during school hours. The teacher just calls me and I come by to change it out.

    Your son is much older and would be able to learn the process himself. It only takes like two minutes once you have the routine down. I would just suggest keeping a spare pod (or two) in his bag and a vial of insulin at school if they can do that for him. I'm not aware of anyway you can pre-fill a pod. Filling a pod is the first step to activating one and you can only have one active at a time. If there is a way to do it, it's news to me. :) We do not have a backup pdm. Don't plan on it either.
     
  4. jilmarie

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    I'm not a pod user, but wouldn't it be less complicated to store a few unfilled pods at school and then have Jeremy fill one up if and when it's needed? Would he be comfortable learning how to fill one? Is there a fridge in the office or nurses office where he could store an unopened vial of insulin? That way the unrefrigerated insulin or prefilled pods wouldn't have to be cycled into use. Just a thought, I'm not sure how your school works or how complicated filling an Omnipod is.
     
  5. MissMadisonsMom

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    We have extra supplies stored in the school infirmary. Batteries, pod, glucagon, carbs, strips and a vial of refrigerated insulin. Is it possible your son can have a place like that to store his stuff? The only thing Maddie carries around is her PDM, strips and a poker, oh and juice. For us, it is so rare that a pod fails Madison's only had to see the nurse 1 time in 3 years.

    No, you can't prefill pods, but he can always keep a spare pod with him and draw out the insulin from the 'failed' pod - actually quite easy to do. We had to do it last month at a fastpitch tournament because we were 20 miles from home, she had just changed the pod that morning and the game was starting in a few minutes. While it's not recommended it certainly works in a pinch.

    For extended visits I have a small tupperware container that has 2 pods, strips, batteries, insulin to put in the fridge and other stuff she may need. She'll put the container on top of the fridge or somewhere out of the way. A caution from experience - don't put pods in the fridge :) they'll fail!

    We have a spare pdm ONLY because we upgraded to the current style.

    Congratulations on your decision to pump. I hope your are as satisfied with the Pod as we are.
     
  6. JeremysDad

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    Jeremy will learn how to fill the pod and activate it once we go for training. He will have no problems with this or managing the PDM and changing delivery rates. I was curious about what Pod users use as backups.

    I was thinking along the lines of having the school store an unused vial or pen cartridge (which is what we currently have) in their fridge.

    We will find the best way to do it as time goes on but it always helps to get ideas from those who have been "Podding" for a long time. They know all the tricks.
     
  7. arogers

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    You cannot prefill the pods, they start alarming like crazy if not activated. We just keep an extra vial of insulin and and a few pods in the office with his extra supplies. When my son goes to a friends house for an extended period of time, he throws a few pods in his bag and keeps insulin in the case. I have had to make trips to various houses/swimming pools/sporting events when we've forgotten but I guess that's just what we do. Also, most of the time, the pods have come off, they weren't failures. We do have a spare PDM and have only needed it once in 3 years.

    Anne
    Mom of 3 boys
    14, 12 (dx'd 3/07, Omnipod 10/07) and 8
     
  8. sassypantz

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    Don't pre-fill the pods! Their batteries would eventually die down, and the constant beeping would drive everyone crazy in the nurse's office.

    Go ahead and keep an extra pod at school. You may want to consider sending the vial he's currently using with him to school, just in case. Keep in mind, the insulin that goes into the pod should be room temperature. We take the vial out of the fridge the day before her pod is supposed to expire, and leave it out over the week or so that it takes to use it up.

    After a month or so, you should have enough insulin stocked up that you can spare an unopened box to keep at school (make sure your doc writes the script for a little over what you expect to use so that you have a cushion!). Then, if he needs to use the insulin, he can bring the vial home and finish that bottle at home, and replace the one in storage at school. This school year, DD has had to replace a pod at school twice. One came loose, the other ran out of insulin about 4 hours earlier than expected. She's 12, though, and going through some hormonal swings that mean her demands change at the drop of a hat! So for the one that expired early, it was easy enough to take a new bottle of insulin out of the fridge for an hour or so before she refilled it. In the case of an occlusion or loss of adhesive, it's not likely to be a disaster if you go pod-less for a half hour or so while the insulin warms a little (with careful monitoring, of course).

    And no, we don't have a backup PDM, but we do always carry spare batteries. It was a little easier for us, since DD is a girl, she has a special purse to carry all her D stuff, and no one is the wiser.
     
  9. Traci

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    I keep spare pods, alcohol wipes, iv prep, and remover at school, but not insulin. We live very near the school and I can easily run insulin to him if needed. By high school age, I'd definitely have him keep insulin there and do his own changes, but ds is only 9 and I'd rather do it myself right now.

    I also keep a spare meter, test strips, fruit snacks, chocolate, and peanut butter crackers.

    For the record, I think I've only had to change his pod a handful of times--and all were because he had knocked it off in PE or recess.
     
  10. chbarnes

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    It just so happens Chris's pod failed during show choir practice after school today. We keep pods, insulin etc at the nurses office. It was closed. His Mom picked him up and he changed it at home. He did go to 300, but it's not the end of the world.
     
  11. JeremysDad

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    Great info. Thanks to all.

    Ok, so you cannot pre-fill a Pod. You cannot keep Pods in the fridge. You can pull insulin from the old pod to fill a new one... in a pinch.

    We do not use vials. We have penfill cartridges that are 300 units each and 5 in a box. That's better (according to the CDE) than a vial that contains 1000 units. The cost for us is the same so I renewed my cartridge prescription instead of going with vials.

    I think this will work. Jeremy will keep a few pods/batteries at school (along with strips etc). He will also keep a sealed Novolog cartridge in the refrig at school. If he uses it, he will return it home and take a new sealed one back to school the next day and we will start using the opened one to fill the pods. If he goes on an extended stay at a friend, we should know how much insulin is in his current pod. If it's enough to fill another pod with, assuming the pod will fail, all he needs is a replacement pod. If it is not enough, he can change pods before he goes and makes sure it is full.
     
  12. chbarnes

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    I wanted to add, it is nice having a backup PDM, particularly when traveling. Chris's PDM failed on the island of Fiji when he was traveling with a group of kids at age 11. He called us on his cell phone. We talked him through programming the backup and the trip went on. Even at home, if PDM fails on the weekend, it could be three days before a replacement arrived.
     
  13. MissMadisonsMom

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    Penfills are the way to go...the CDE always questions our decision, and we always tell her it is SO convenient to grab a small vial and go. We can fill 2 pods with 1 vial with little to no waste.
     
  14. Darryl

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    Unless the pods are physically damaged by sports, etc., you should not have to replace them very often at school. For us, it's been 2 or 3 times a year. The others are correct, you can not pre-fill them, but the fill process is so simple that he should have no problem doing it.
     
  15. vettechmomof2

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    It is difficult and not always recommended to try and remove the insulin form a used pod. Even if it failed during priming sometimes you are unable to remove the same amount of insulin that you actually put into the pod so I would not count on that.
    Sending insulin to school for the nurse to keep would be what I recommend.
    I homeschool so my daughter does not need to worry about this but when we are out and about my daughter always carries a vial of insulin with her and 2 spare pods.
     
  16. Beach bum

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    We don't have the pod, but do pump.

    We keep a couple of spare sets and supplies at school along with a pen cartridge of insulin. In the event the set fails (Abby won't let nurse change them, I go in) we have the pen for back up. Then, I just draw the insulin out of the cartridge and do a set change.
     
  17. Kirsten

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    We keep an insulin pen at school, in case we need to do a pod change there. It hasn't happened yet. If there is a pod failure in the afternoon, we just deal with pod change at home. It will be different for you, since your son can do it himself.

    Kirsten
     
  18. buggle

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    We just carry a syringe. When pods have failed (rare), we have used the syringe to pull some insulin out of the pod and inject. It obviously doesn't give perfect control, but it'll hold for several hours until you can get home if you keep giving injections as needed. Brendan actually had a pod failure yesterday and we wanted to go out to dinner before coming home. So we just took the pod off, pulled up some insulin and gave it to him.

    Test your needle length after removing a used pod to make sure it reaches the reservoir. The shortest needles will not, but the next length will. I think the length we have is 1/2".
     
  19. danismom79

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    Everyone already told you you can't pre-fill the pods. But I wouldn't take the insulin out of the old one either, unless it was recently put on. I only do it if it's been less than a day.

    We keep 2-3 spare pods in a tote at the nurse's office, and a vial of Humalog in the fridge. We also still keep a few syringes.
     
  20. virgo39

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    My DD is only 6, so during school her PDM and back up supplies are in the nurse's office.

    The back supplies include (along with the usual snacks, meter, glucose, batteries, etc.) of a Novopen penfill cartridge of Novolog, syringes, the Novopen Jr. and two spare pods.

    I don't expect the nurse to do a pod change, but do keep two back up pods at school, so that everything I would need to do a pod change is already there.

    When DD lost a pod at school a week or so ago, it was on a regular pod change day, albeit earlier in the day, so the nurse simply gave her her lunchtime insulin plus a bit more for missed basal and I just changed her pod after school. The nurse sent the open penfill cartridge home, we'll use that in the next week or so, and I sent back a new one for her to store.

    If your son is doing pod changes, make sure the back up supplies at school include anything he might use to remove the pod (e.g., we are using Unisolve wipes) and anything he might be using to attach the new pod (e.g., we clean the area with Hibiclens and are going to try some of the other products, Skin-Tac, etc.).
     

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