- advertisement -

Please can I have parents views on the pump

Discussion in 'Parents of Children with Type 1' started by motherofthreechildren, Nov 17, 2011.

  1. motherofthreechildren

    motherofthreechildren New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2011
    Messages:
    1
    My 8 year old son was diagnosed with T1 last year and unfortunately his levels are not very stable. We have been offered the pump by the hospital and would like other people's views? Thank you
     
  2. Christopher

    Christopher Approved members

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2007
    Messages:
    6,771
    Welcome to the site.

    There are many things that go into managing a person with diabetes blood glucose levels. Simply getting a pump will not automatially make his levels more "in control". There may be things you can do to get him to be more in range more of the time. I think providing some more information might help, if you are interested.

    What kinds of insulin is he on? Do you pre-bolus before meals. Are you testing him at night? Are you doing corrections when his bg is high? Do you count carbs as best you can and weigh food portions as often as possible? What do you mean by "not very stable"?

    What I am saying is, have you explored all the variables that effect bg which may be causing the lack of "control"? If you have, then by all means explore a pump, but I think it is worth looking at how you are doing with MDI first.
     
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2011
  3. Ellen

    Ellen Senior Member

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2005
    Messages:
    8,240
    The pump was transformational for us. The ability to titrate small doses of insulin at different times of the day is so helpful - impossible with syringe IMO. Is it perfect? NO.
     
  4. Butterfly Betty

    Butterfly Betty Approved members

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2010
    Messages:
    540
    We just started pumping on Monday so I can only give you my experience till now. So far, we love it. Sophie was diagnosed just short of a year ago and her numbers have been unstable since pretty much day one. We adjusted and adjusted and never saw any real improvements. Over the last four days, her numbers have been better, not perfect, but better.

    My advice, would be to give it a shot if it's something that you and your little one feel you're ready for.
     
  5. sooz

    sooz Approved members

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2009
    Messages:
    2,330
    My granddaughter is nine now and was diagnosed at age four. She is now using the Omnipod, which is a tubeless pump. The benefit of the pump over shots is that it permits her to eat with more freedom. If she wants seconds on something for example, and has already received her insulin for dinner, we just tap a few buttons and the carbs are covered! Likewise, if she wants an afternoon snack, it does not require an extra shot, etc. You can also calibrate the basal doses of insulin in different amounts throughout the 24 hour day for as precise basal delivery as possible. We are very happy with the Omnipod, even though, as previously stated, pumps are not perfect. They do make life easier. Instead of four shots or more a day, the pump site is changed once every three days. It is definitely something you should consider for your child.
     
  6. obtainedmist

    obtainedmist Approved members

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2010
    Messages:
    1,537
    It is a really good tool...but it requires some very committed problem solving approaches. Basal testing is a real bother (checking every 2-3 hours during the night after an early dinner...skipping a breakfast and testing every 1-2 hours until lunch...etc.) BUT, the information you get from the effort is so valuable. So, the pump is a wonderful tool, but it is only as good as your investigational skills. Also, after you get your basals down...you will be tweaking it (and maybe the I:C ratios) frequently every few months or so as the insulin needs change due to growth, sickness, and the phase of the moon!:rolleyes: Because there are so many components it is more to keep track of as far as supplies. When you get a high blood sugar, because the delivery method is more complicated, you'll have to do more problem solving than with MDI.

    So, in a lot of ways, pumping is harder than MDI because it's less straight forward. As long as you realize it isn't a magic fix and expect some ups and downs at first...you'll be fine!:)
     
  7. sooz

    sooz Approved members

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2009
    Messages:
    2,330
    Could you explain what you mean when you said "When you get a high blood sugar, because the delivery method is more complicated, you'll have to do more problem solving than with MDI.?" That is not our experience with the Omnipod. I am confused. :confused:
     
  8. rutgers1

    rutgers1 Approved members

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2011
    Messages:
    320
    We have only been at it a bit less than a month, but it has been great thus far. Like you, we never found MDI to keep his blood sugar stable --- always high or low, very few in betweens. His basal needs could never be met by Levemir.

    His average blood sugar was close to 200 the first week on the pump due to very conservative basal numbers, but it has been dropping steadily over the past 3 weeks. It is now in the 160's. We are very happy, and we still have some tweaking to do.
     
  9. obtainedmist

    obtainedmist Approved members

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2010
    Messages:
    1,537
    When we were on MDI, if Molly was high after a meal, we assumed that we miscalculated the carbs. If she was high in the morning, we assumed that the Lantus wasn't working for the dawn phenomenon.

    With the pump (and I'm speaking only from our experience with the Ping), it could be a bubble in the tube, an infusion set that had a kinked canula or blood in the canula or had just pooped out after 2 days in. It could be that the infusion set had been ripped out without anyone knowing it. Or...it could be that the basals are suddenly not set correctly for changing needs...or that we just miscalculated the carbs on a meal!:p That's what I mean about it being less straight forward and more complicated due to the delivery method.:)
     
  10. rutgers1

    rutgers1 Approved members

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2011
    Messages:
    320
    I guess I kinda just lump all those initial issues with the pump together --- either there is something wrong with the pump, or there is an issue with the basal or bolus. We admittedly haven't had any problems with the pump yet, so I can't comment to that, but the fact that I couldn't do anything about changing basal needs is what totally ruined MDI for me. Matt's basal needs are so much higher at night than during the day.
     
  11. Butterfly Betty

    Butterfly Betty Approved members

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2010
    Messages:
    540
    That's exactly how Sophie's are. With MDI's, she wasn't getting the coverage she needed, even with the split dose of levimer. In the 4 days she's been on her pump, I've already seen an improvement in her numbers.
     
  12. Christopher

    Christopher Approved members

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2007
    Messages:
    6,771
    You could always split the basal dose.
     
  13. twicker1

    twicker1 Approved members

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2006
    Messages:
    1,409
    I'm not going to lie... it took us about 4 months to work out all the kinks, but I wouldn't give it up for anything! It keeps track of insulin still working, and calculates for corrections along with that "one" cookie he wants to eat. True, it doesn't mean better overall control, but it is SO worth it! I wish we had started the pump within the first year after dx, but it wasn't until after 3-1/2 years.
     
  14. obtainedmist

    obtainedmist Approved members

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2010
    Messages:
    1,537
    I love the way it made Molly feel...like a normal teenager again! She had a lot of issues around giving herself injections and the pump took away so much self-consciousness. The added benefit to her (besides getting rid of the morning highs) was that she could eat in a less regimented way. She's a world class snacker and it made that doable for her again. Also, exercise was a lot more managable with the reduced basal function. Suddenly she wasn't having to eat something just to be able to do some hard exercise.

    She's off on her own now at college and managing the pump independently (though she did say that when she's back for Thanksgiving, she'd like to do some basal testing to tweak things a bit). I'm so glad we had almost a year on it before she left!
     
  15. Mom2Will

    Mom2Will Approved members

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2007
    Messages:
    1,051
    I have to respectfully disagree with this entire post. Pumping for us is much, much easier. I love the fact that we have control of the basal and that we can turn it up or down when we need to. I love the fact that the pump does the calculations for dosing. We don't tweak every few months or so, sometimes it's every week depending, something we would cautiously wait to do while on MDI. In as far as supplies; rather than syringes we order reservoirs and sites which the pump company sends us automatically every three months. The delivery method for high blood sugar is not complicated unless pushing a button is complicated. If the settings are correct the correction will do its job and correct. Pumping for us has been good.

    I will admit that Will switches to MDI in the summer so as not to be "attached" 24/7 and that's okay too. However you get insulin and whatever method you prefer is a personal choice.
     
  16. emm142

    emm142 Approved members

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2008
    Messages:
    6,883
    I think I find the pump more "difficult" in that there is more scope for micromanagement (and I'll pretty much do whatever I can, which means I change the pump settings a lot, so I do more work now wheareas on MDI I would just settle for "okay").

    However, the extra work really does pay off and I have far fewer serious lows now, and not so many of the high highs either.

    Which insulin delivery system works best for you is very individualised. Personally, the pump fits with my needs better than Lantus/Novo did.
     
  17. nanhsot

    nanhsot Approved members

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2010
    Messages:
    2,626
    The pump is a wonderful tool. It, however, does not replace vigilant carb counting, daily tweaks, continual corrections on crazy days, etc. Bottom line is that it doesn't protect from crazy swings.

    If he's not been stable on MDI, then I'm not sure the pump is your answer, though a pump WILL make life easier on your son. I'd say the pump is easier on the user, but not necessarily easier on the manager (which is often the user as well). You might consider posting some details of what is going on with your son's blood sugar, we have some pretty amazing parents on here who are excellent at spotting trends and may be able to help you with your current regimen.

    The pump is wonderful, don't get me wrong. With it you can eat a LOT more normally and set basals to match their day/needs/growth (it's worth it for my teen just for the dawn phenomenon). Leaving the house is much easier as it's attached....less worries about forgetting syringes or packing a bag, frankly my son runs out of the house with a meter only most days (not that I recommend that....). The pump simplifies the child's life, I believe. But it is NOT easy, it's not without work, and it does not replace good solid management.

    You might consider getting the book "Pumping Insulin" now and start learning more about it, it's an excellent resource.
     
  18. sooz

    sooz Approved members

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2009
    Messages:
    2,330
    Ok gotcha! That makes sense. We don't have tubing to consider but we do have to make sure the cannula is not kinked or pulled out. I understand what you mean now.
     

Share This Page

- advertisement -

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice