Considering the Omnipod

So I am new to your site and so far it seems reassuring on different topics. I am a fairly new diabetic, GAD antibody-Type 1 for 4 years now and have slowly lost all insulin production. I am considering the omnipod but am not 100 % just yet. I go in a week for my 4 hour learning session and wanted to get an idea from long time Pump users thier thoughts. I was totally against the pump due to my lifestyle; gym, beach so now that there is one tubeless I am most definitely considering. Any constructive yet honest advice?

Hi Lilnance, I have been Type 1 for about 26 years now. I only started pumping, with OmniPod, about a year ago. I resisted going to a pump for so many years because I was having success with MDI and did not like the idea of being attached to tubing. My endo did not push me because he said I would probably only see incremental improvement over what I was getting on MDI.

Then the old lady hormones kicked in a couple of years ago and I was no longer able to control my blood sugar without being able to set different basal rates at different times of the day/night. I really had no choice other than to try a pump. OmniPod was the only pump I considered because of the lack of tubing - so my statements are from that perspective as I have never used a tubed pump. There are folks here who have used both and can give you their perspective in comparison.

I have been quite happy with "podding" with OmniPod. I like that the insertion process is automated, whereas the tubed insertion is not. As you'll see in your learning session, you stick the pod on, push a button on the PDM, hear three clicks and then *pop* (it feels like a rubber band popped you). It's done and you're good to go. You never see a needle. It's fast and easy. I've done it at my office before without raising any eyebrows.

I also like that the PDM serves as my glucose test meter so I don't have to carry an extra meter. OmniPod's customer service has been fantastic - you can call them 24/7 and the reps have always been empathetic and patient.

When I first started with OmniPod, I experimented with different sites, knocked a few pods off accidentally and found some sites worked better for me than others. Any time I pulled a pod off early, customer service replaced those pods. Now that I've been podding almost a year, I have very few pod problems as I don't have as many "user errors".

Everybody is different and each pump probably has it's own pros and cons. To see first-hand the differences, you could ask to view each type of pump and be walked through the insertion process. I'm very happy with my decision to go with OmniPod and would make the same decision today.

Thank you! I certainly appreciated your candor and response. I am leaning toward it. I will keep you posted. Did you notice that you needed extra "sticky" stuff for the pods? I work out and sweat alot and am a huge "bath" person and am not sure if they would stay on for 3 days. I did try the trial one for 2 days and had no problem but I will admit I didn't work out as hard those days. I just want to have all my ducks in a row so I don't fail at the process.

Ty, Nance

Lilnance, I have great confidence that you will not fail... if I can do it (at 52 years old), you can do it! :) I also asked lots of questions before I started so I could feel comfortable with what to expect.

I have not needed any extra "sticky" but there are many here who do use products that help if you have a problem with that. If anything, I've had more of a problem in certain locations like my arms with keeping the plastic pod piece attached to the "fabric" of the adhesive if that makes any sense. Some people use tapes or wraps to help with that also.

Some of the parents of kids using OmniPod may chime in also since many kids spend hours in the water with OmniPod during the summer - they could probably comment on any issues with adhesive.

We have an OmniPod users group here at TuDiabetes - you may want to check it out and browse there too. That group has been a great resource for me.


Hi and welcome!

I've been a satisfied Omnipod users for a couple of years now.

I will give you the same advice that I was given before I went on the Pod.

First, gather as much information as you feel comfortable with enough to make an informed decision. The Omnipod User's Group on on this site is a great resource.

You will find plenty of pros and cons and plenty of threads and posts from happy and satisfied users and people who have tried and given up on the pod alike.

At the end of the day, only you can make your decision for yourself. If you like the reasons to try the pod, then try the pod. You will never know if the disadvantages outweigh the advantages without actually trying the pod because the experiencss of no two users is exactly the same.

To be completely candid, I was very hesitant to try the pod because of some of the experiences I read about, but I really thought it had the features I desired versus the other options. I did experience some of the difficulties other users did but I stukc with it, worked through problems and solutions, and now enjoy relatively trouble-free podding.

Best of luck!

If you're active, a pump just might be ideal. I am very active and find that pumping has allowed me to be more regular with my exercise and activities. I don't have to change my long-acting insulin 24 hours in advance of exercise with a pump; I can just adjust my basal rates and go! There is a huge learning curve with any pump, but for me it has been totally worth the work.

There are quite a few pumps out there on the market: Minimed Revel, Animas Ping, Omnipod, t:slim, and Accuchek Combo. Carefully look at all the features they offer and decide which features are most important for you. For example, if you're around water a lot, the Animas Ping might be a better choice. With the Omnipod, the pod itself is waterproof, but the PDM is not. Also, I've heard quite a few people complain about the pods not staying on when spending a lot of time in water.

I use the Minimed Revel, which I love. I did look into the Omnipod but what turned me off was that the pod itself seemed huge (they are coming out with a smaller model). Also, I didn't like the fact that if the pod failed, you lost all your insulin. Pods/infusion sites are going to fail, but with a tubed pump, you don't lose all your insulin. Finally, a friend of mine has the Omnipod and she complained that one feature she really hated was that when the pod expired, it would beep constantly until changed. She said that it was really annoying if it expired in the middle of the day when she was in meetings.

Read all the information about each of the pumps carefully and make a decision based on your individual needs. Consider things like your total daily dosage (if you take a large amount of insulin, you'll want a pump with a larger reservoir), how much you're around water (the Ping is the only truly waterproof pump), ease of operation, bolus increments, basal increments, and basal patterns.

The Omnipod adhesive, honestly, is hit and miss depending upon what activity you're doing and, probably, how many gremlins live in your closet.

If I even suspect I'm going to have an issue with the adhesive for any reason, I'll use either KT (Kineseo) tape or Opsite Flexifit to reinforce the adhesive. The adhesive is actually designed to allow the pod to move and conform to different parts of the body but, sometimes, it's just better to tape the thing down.

The nice part is that I can tailor the amount of adhesive to my needs. If I;m doing full live training in Jiujitsu, I'll tape it down with KT, Opsite, and some type of glue on adhesive. If I'm running, I might put a couple of strips of opsite to keep the pod stable. If I'm going to be in water for a long period of time, I'll put a couple of strips of Opsite on, just in case.

The bottom line is that the function of the pod is not dependent on the capability of Insulet's one size fits as many as possible adhesive. As long as the cannula is kept stable and secure at the absorbtion site, you're free to use as much or as little reinforcement on the pod itself, using whatever gets the job done, to fit your personal needs. At one point, I was snipping away the Omnipod adhesive, after insertion on-site, because it was just more stable to use that extra few square centimeters for more KT Tape.

Also, at one point, I was having issues with the pod coming off when wet, but that was after two workouts and three showers with the same pod on, after about a day and a half of wear. The adhesive can only take so much abuse. A few strips of Opsite took care of that problem on the rare occasions where it occurred. I've knocked the pod half off, with practically the cannula being the only thing keeping the pod on, and still saved the pod with a few strips of Opsite.

If you like the features of the Omnipod, there are solutions to most of the typical issues that commonly occur if you are willing to explore some options. The way I looked at it was that I got the pod in the first place because of all the features I liked, like being able to walk into the shower without having to either worry about disconnecting my tubed pump, or dealing with the entire apparatus while I'm showering.

I like the idea of being able to leave the PDM somewhere safe while a disposable pod is still delivering my basal for full coverage at all times. I don;t ever recall worrying about whether or not I needed to take my cell phone into the shower or pool because it isn't waterproof either.

If you don't like the features that make an Omnipod and Omnipod and can find more suitable features in another pump then, by all means, weigh your options.

If you're, instead, worried about the features of the Omnipod you like, somehow, not working, I wouldn't worry about that unless you actually find out for yourself that they do not work for you.

Also, the first thing I did when I got the trial pod was knock the thing off just sitting into my computer chair. Seriously, the trial pod lasted less than 15 minutes before being ripped completely off while doing, practically, nothing.

I learned two lessons in those 15 mintes.

1) I really needed to pay attention to what I'm doing and where the pod is stuck to.

2) I really needed to find a way to do something about the relative flimsiness of the adhesive on occasions when I would be very active.

It didn't convince me that the Pod wasn't worth a try.