Active woman (tennis, golf, yoga, Pilates, etc.) needs advice on pump choice

I've been using a Medtronic Paradigm pump for 10 years, and my latest one is long out of warranty. (Still have an old back-up pump, though.) Seems like the most recent pumps have large reservoirs. I only change my reservoir about every 6 days, since my body is fairly insulin-sensitive, and my activities tend to burn carbs fast. (My BS can plunge if I'm just trying on clothes!) I'm interested in switching to a different pump -- NOT the Omnipod -- and, my doctor is pointing me towards a T:slim or Accucheck Combo. I'm used to the Medtronic, and really like the new Contour Next meter that communicates with the pump. However, the pump is kind of retro and bulky, and when I replace it, I'll be stuck with the new one for 5 years -- the Medicare warranty period! Any suggestions?

I played with, but didn't use, the Tslim at an expo and it was really neat. Right now, I have a Medtronic 523 and am a bit concerned about getting the new 530 because I'm not a huge fan of a pump that will turn itself off when it thinks that I'm low, not realizing that I've already eaten a pint of ice cream and am just waiting to blast off, or whatever. I have my rig set up and do pretty well with it and would hate to upset the applecart with a new feature. I'm really used to how to adjust the Medtronic to cover things. The retroness doesn't bother me but the features might. I've still got some time to figure it out and watch and see what else is in the pipeline but that's where I'm at now.

What about the Animas Ping. It has a 200 unit reservoir & it has a BG meter that communicates with the pump.

Medtronic has two reservoir choices, a 180 and a 300 unit option. You can still get the Revel if you don't want to go for the 530.

Both the t:slim and the Accuchek pumps are 300 unit pumps. The Ping is 200 units, but about the same size as the Revel. I switched to the Ping almost two years ago because I use the Dexcom CGM and I was planning to update to the combo Animas/Dex pump. Two years later I am still waiting, but the word is that the release of that pump (the Vibe) is really going to happen soon. I’ll believe it when I see it.

Compared to Medtronic, the Ping has a horrible menu system and I find it frustrating. Fortunately the Vibe will correct my most hated thing about the Ping: the recommended bolus does not self-populate in the current Ping. There is also not Esc or Back button, so if you mess up, you have to scroll down to the bottom of the current menu and go back to the main screen to start over. The Ping remote/companion meter is slow and I quit using it because it drove me crazy. I had used the One Link meter with Medtronic and loved it.

One thing I do like about the Ping is that it is waterproof. I have also had zero technical problems with it. I never had technical issues in 8 yrs of using Medtronic pumps, but I had cracked cases four or five times and water intrusion once. If it weren’t for absolutely hating Medtronic CGMS, I would probably still be using a Medtronic pump.

I have often regretted that I didn’t buy the T:slim instead of the Ping, but I hope that the Vibe will change my mind. Most people seem to love the T:slim, but some people definitely hate it. I never considered the Accuchek Combo but have never heard much that would entice me to use it.

Here is a link that may help you with info about each pump:

Here is a different link with pump comparisons:

Good luck with your decision. I find pump shopping very frustrating because every pump has some definite weaknesses. Here’s a blogpost I wrote last fall about the idea of designing my own perfect custom pump:

The Animas and Medtronic pumps are similar in overall dimensions. The Accuchek Combo consists of a semi-dumb pump, which is signficantly bulkier than the above two pumps, plus a handheld controller/BG meter.

The menu system on the Vibe is a PITA compared to my old 522. However it is waterproof and interconnects with the Dexcom G4. Rumours are that the Dexcom G5 (due out next year) will communicate with an iPhone. That's going to be a game changer....


I see that you've thoroughly investigated the ins and outs of all the available pumps -- none of which are really perfect for anyone! Of course, I'm used to the Medtronic Paradigm, and I don't need a waterproof pump. I have no interest in a CGMS because I have enough site problems with the infusion sets alone -- having injected to infused insulin for 50 years. I do love the Bayer Contour Next meter that sends the BG reading to the pump -- even though I can't read the meter's screen when I'm out in the sun. I guess, the biggest issues for me are size, weight, and attachment to clothing. I use the clip to hook the meter to my waistband all the time -- whether I'm playing tennis or golf, or taking a class at the gym. I just wish there was a little less bulk and weight to the Paradigm, and that it was a little less prone to develop cracks in the case. I like the idea of a remote that can truly subtitute for the pump controls (unlike the Medtronic remote, which just leaves me trying to recall how much insulin I may have taken during that cocktail hour). And the T:slim's smartphone style and function make it very appealing. But, re-fueling seems to be an issue, and I have no idea how it attaches to clothing. I want a pump that will stay out of my way!!!

My pump is a 522, so, I guess, it's pretty similar to the 523 (Revel), and doesn't require a CGMS connection. The 530 sounds like it won't work for control freaks like me.

Thanks, but I can't really use a CGMS -- too many site problems. It's too bad that the Accucheck Combo pump is so bulky!!!

You might want to check out the Dexcom users group on here - there are a number of threads about alternative sites. I knows that Dexcom only certify the abdomen for sensor placement, but many users seem to get excellent results from arms and some of the females use "the girls". If you have scar tissue on your abdomen there may be alternatives that will work well.


I use the tslim and like the microdelivery system. Am a hiker, and have an active life/job etc.
Like the small size of the tslim, I carry it in a tallygear tummietote 2. It keeps it secure and close to body and is easy to place under clothing if you choose. Have not used a clip since the first month or so. I like the ability to have several profiles on board for work days vs sick days vs hiking days etc. The tslim let's you have totally different IC ratios, CF and basal rates in each segment of each program. So you can set each program up to meet your needs. Temp rates can be run for 72 hours if needed.
The screen is easy to read, and if you shade it can be read in bright sun.
My only issue is the low end of the basal rate. Starts at 0.1 but then can increment by 0.01.
I get around that by using U 50 novolog. If your basal rates are higher than that would not be an issue for you.I'm still insulin sensitive with a TDD of about 12 units of U100 a day.
I can run a cartridge fill for over a week before I run out and have not noticed degradation of the novolog. I do change sites on the standard time table.

I'm also one who includes the girls in the dexcom and site placement rotation.

you might want to check out this pump comparison

I love my Accu-chek Combo, and the meter talks to the pump and has a nice bolus calculator.

After comparing all of the 300 unit reservoir pumps I was eligible for, I went with the Accu-chek. Simple reason: it's the only system with bluetooth. I don't have to pull out my pump to bolus.

I'm at the point of looking at pump options too. I'm an Animas Ping user currently and the warranty is up next week. I have liked my Ping but am curious about other options. If I knew that the VIBE was on Animas's short term horizon, I might just stay for that but the one I am really considering is the asante snap. I've heard great things and I like the ease and environmental friendliness of it. I have heard about too many mishaps with the t:slim to consider it and for me, I'm lumpy and bumpy enough already-- so the omnipod is out. In addition to SNAP I am looking at Medtronic and even the old never changing accu-check (simply because I have liked the remote option of the PING). I think in the long run for me it will come down to the Snap or the Ping. Snap will give you a 30 day free trial -- check it out with Diabetes Sisters.

Interesting -- my CDE told me to look at the Accu-chek Combo. If you like it, I definitely will give that greater consideration than I had.

I believe, if I recall correctly, that the Snap uses a 300 unit reservoir. I'm leaning towards checking out the Accu-chek combo, because, as Kelly said, the pump can stay concealed during a bolus. I love the look and features of the T:slim, but I would await a newer version if I knew it was on the horizon.

FWIW, I use the Accu-Chek Spirit Combo and I routinely go 8 - 10 days between reservoir changes.

I recently have started using a Spi-Belt when I am bike riding, playing tennis and other active activities. Couple that with the meter talking to the pump and it is a good, basic system, with pretty outstanding tech support.

Thanks, but I'm not interested in a sensor. After 50 years of injections and infusion site punctures, I have experienced some site difficulties.