A question about basal rates

I am new to the pump, and have only been on my Ping for about one week. Been type 1 for 12 years. So, my basal rates are pretty much the same 24 hrs a day, with the small exception of a .05 difference from 2am to 10am. I woke up at 7:30 am and my BS was 150. I check again when I get to work(9am), and its 215. I give a 2 unit correction. I did not eat anything at that point. I go to our cafeteria and get an english muffin (27g carbs) with an egg and a slice of cheese. I give 3 units for this, about 5 minutes prior to eating. This was at 9:30am. I check a few minutes ago and my BS is 243. I have 3.5 or so units on board, so I hesitate to give a correction. Given this info, what did I do wrong? What would you have done differently?

I think I might need to adjust my basal rates a bit, which is something I will discuss with my doc, but Im looking for insight. Things like this happen fairly regularly and its really frustrating…

Hi Chris,

Sounds like you need to adjust your basal rates. Kinks, occlusions, and various insulin delivery errors can cause your BG to rise rapidly, but given you’ve only been doing the pump thing for a week, my guess is your problem lies with your basal rate. You absolutely must get Pumping Insulin which explains anything and everything about pumping. If you’re lucky, your local library will have a copy on the shelf you can check out today. If not, here it is at Amazon.

As for basal testing, the goal of basal testing is to fast while regularly checking your blood glucose values (BGs) to observe how well you basal insulin keeps your BG level. Most people break the day into four manageable time segments, so that they only have to fast for a portion of the day: morning, afternoon, evening, overnight. During each episode of basal testing, you don’t eat anything or do any major exercise/activity (tends to lower BG values) while regularly checking your BG values.

–If your BG values rise over a given time period, then you need to increase your basal insulin delivery to compensate
–If your BG values drop, then you need to reduce your basal insulin delivery.
–If your BG values are level (or drop only slightly), then your basal insulin delivery is accurate.

Again, read Walsh’s book on exactly how to do this. Basal insulin delivery won’t immediately affect BG values: there is a roughly 2-hr time lag there. Read Walsh. I got a lot more info from that book, and the folks on this website, that I ever did from my endo. He’s good, but nowhere near as comprehensive as the first two sources.

Best of luck to you.

Cheers, Mike

Thanks for the responses. I have been meaning to buy that book, this was a reminder, so I did! I think im just being impatient. This is a new technology to me, and I just need to iron out the quirks. But man, its frustrating to do everything by the book, as you have learned over the years to have it misfire right in your face!

Yes, patience is key! Figuring out basal rates, especially for new pumpers can take some trial and error, but you have options that you just didn’t have before with variable basal rates. So hopefully once you get the right pattern, you will see great results.

My first A1c after starting the pump went up before it came down. Some people experience better blood sugars immediately. I took me a few months to learn to use the pump effectively. And I’m still learning :slight_smile:

Hi Chris,

Be prepared to be frustrated some more when you’re doing the basal testing. I took me 1+ months to get my basal rates sorted out. Granted, I’ve always been kindoff slow and anal retentive, but…

Cheers, Mike

Initial basals are calculated off your Total Daily Dose (TDD) on insulin shots…usually a conservative estimate so, likely to need to go up over the first few weeks. Also use a unit/kg estimate of what most people require (0.5-0.6 units/kg actutal or adjusted body weight). Of course…the TDD is effected by how you eat…so, diets higher in CHOs and protein will require more insulin than those that are not. I would chat w/ your doctor or CDE - whomever calculated your insulin dosages and basals and share your concerns. They should be able to tell you how they calculated it and what to do to get more stable numbers. I found that with shots, I over compensated w/ my long acting (translated into basals) which made my I:C ratios fairly low…when I switched to the pump and fine-tuned the basals…this became apparant as I shot up after eating.

Good luck:)

Hello Chris,

Actually when i have hi bg i take my correction and i increase the basal rate up to 150% for one hour. Most of the time im back to normal in max 2hrs. In some cases you shold check the insulin maybe its not that effecient. I suggest before adjusting your basal at night try this way. remeber its dangerous to play with the basal rates speciallt at night, please ask your doctor about it !

Goof luck


Forgot to say…the basal should be around 50% of your TDD…just to give you an idea if it is close or not. Hope some of this helps. Take care and good luck:)