Does Omnipod have Any quality control at all?

I’ve been on the Omnipod for 1.5 years and I’ve had a total of 4 pod failures, Most of those (3 of the 4) in the early weeks of starting on the system.

I would be outraged if I was having a 40% failure rate as Steve D mentioned! I wonder why some people have trouble with this and others don’t?

Oy!! That’s bad. I’ve been frustrated by frequent pod failures as well, but mine are more like twice per month. When I get several bad ones in a short time-frame I always wonder if they got hot, or dropped by the shipper, or any other such circumstance that might effect their viability. Doesn’t seem like a life-sustaining gadget should be so fragile, but maybe some pods are. Sorry you’re having such an infuriating experience, Mike.

Does anyone know how the failure rates compare between all the insulin pumps? Is there a group or site that does that?

My son have been using the pod since May of this year. I thought I was the only one that have this issue. We have pod failures at an alarming rate too. It seemed like we have a pod failure for every 3 good pod that I put on him. We only have one occlusion so far. However, when it worked (like the last 6 days) its wonderful. My son’s A1C went down from 7.5 to 6.3. Insulet has been good about replacing the failed pod, however the insulin that we wasted every time I have to replace the pod that bothers me. All in all, we still would not switch to another pump. My son has been able to swim for 2 hours without having to take off his pump. OR the fact that he is also very clumsy will not make it easier for him if he has the tubing on. We will stay with Omnipod until another options (has to be another patch pump) come up. We definitely will not go with the traditional pump unless he is older and can take care of himself better. I am also worried that with the traditional pump he is going to forget to hook the pump back on after swimming, or shower or etc and left it behind. Last month, he jumped into the pool with his Dexcom receiver…
Anyway, keep us updated.

Here’s hoping the upcoming smaller pod addresses this excessive failure rate!

I had 1 failure last night while at work and the 2 pods b4 that I had the cannulas come out. Checking the cannulas, I saw that they were bent. Hmmm! Called customer service and they are replacing all 3 pods. I started on the Pod in March and have probably had no more than 10 mess up. 6 have been replaced and my local rep sent me 3 others. The way my basal rates fluctuate I would hate to return to MDI. Much easier to adjust on the fly with the pod. Yesterday my basal was at 1.15 and right now I am at 2.60 and it will go down shortly when I go to work in the 110 degree afternoon. Try adjusting to that with Lantus.

I had many (probably 5/10) when I first started on Omnipod while loading the insulin into them. I got the steady tone (problem) instead of the double beep which means all is well.

I found out, by accident, that I was turning the needle after sticking it in the pod, before filling it, don’t know why I did that but I did. When I stopped turning the needle before filling and just push it straight in the problem has pretty much vanished. I may have had one go bad like that in the past 6 months since I changed my setup. I told the techs there -I haven’t heard them mention it online anywhere. Just my findings.

Now in the last box I have had two fail while on me, no occlusion warning, just pod failure. I have never had that before, so I figure a bad box.

That’s all the issues I have had.

My most recent box of pods gave me 3 failures in a row (each a little different). Since then I’ve had 3 more failures from this box. A weird thing is that I’ve used a different box’s pods, with the same lot number, with a much lower failure rate. I’ve been using pods for about a year. I’ve had several pods over the last month where my bg would rise all day, with no indication of an occlusion or other failure. This lack of warning bothers me more than the number of bad pods. My bg swings a lot anyway, so I don’t just drop everything and put on a new pod when it gets high.

The newer version of Abbot strips are unreliable with the pdm. I found this out when I got my first refill shortly after starting with the Omnipod last year. There’s a warning now on Insulet’s web site about using “old”-style strips rather than “new”. This is impossible, since you would have to get your pharmacist to look at the box of strips to see if it has a butterfly on it. Not practical.

With my Animas, I think I had one occlusion and one total failure (water got inside due to a crack I didn’t know was there) in 5 years. Once or twice I snagged the tubing and pulled the set out. I guess I don’t make up a survey population by myself, but that’s my experience. I like the pod, but I’m thinking of switching to Ping because of the failure rate.

Not sure there is a website.

I have used all of the pumps for at least 3+ months each and I would have to say that I have had far fewer problems with “tubed” pumps. First off there is NO communication errors that make it so you have to change the site. I also had far fewer occlusion type (read: poor absorption) problems as well using tubed pumps. I think the process of the tubed pumps relies less heavily on the technology so there are fewer places to get tripped up.

Maybe if using a tubed pump during these problems everyone is having there would have been an extended period of unexplained highs because of the problem the OmniPod picked up and made you start over with a new Pod for? My general sense is this is not the case but who knows?

We had a lot of pod failures in the beginning last Summer but since my son loved the pump so much, we just increased our order to 3 a week instead of 2. That increase and the extra insulin reallybumped up the cost.

Then after several months out and finding all of the good sites, we had almost no pod failures at all. We had quite a few in a row at Christmas and several more around Spring break but at the start of Summer we had so many pods in the house that we had to go on auto-ship delay.

I do know that early on we had a box of pods left out on the table and most of them had communication errors. My theory was that they were accidentially activated because we were not aware that they were there. We used to always have failures by the two until we realized that we needed to take the new pod away, deactivate the old , take that pod away and then get the new pod, fill and activate it.

Insulet also had my son take everything electronic away thinking that there was too much interference - gameboy, phone, ipod, tv remote and portable phone is a bit much at once - I’d be confused too…

When I got my Omnipod, with a few test strips, I checked my sugars with 3 different meters, the pdm included. All were pretty close. When I ordered new strips from my mail-order pharmacy, I again ran 3 meters: One Touch, Abbot Freestyle (which came along with my Omnipod) and the Omni’s built-in meter. The built-in was way off. Insulet’s customer service sent me a new PDM, because at that time Insulet didn’t know that Abbot had changed their strips. There’s a disclaimer now on Insulet’s web site about using only the old-style Freestyle strips. We’re supposed to have pharmacists dig through their stock to find Freestyle strips that DON’T have a butterfly on the box. That’s absurd, so I’ve been using other meters instead, for close to a year now (which is also absurd, I guess…). I like “no tubing”, but there does seem to be a qc issue.

I don’t think we should have to think about the pods so much!

The average in the PDM or any other meter will never equal your A1C. They are calculated differently and based on different samples.

The average of the readings is just that - all readings/# of readings. If you only test before meals and your readings are about 100, your average will be 100 and lower and not reflect that between meals your BG rose by 50 or 80 points. You get a better approximation of A1C by testing 1.5 hours after every meal and therefore including your highs in the average. It also depends on how long you are at each reading before it is corrected. You get a better approximation of A1C from a CGM that takes readings much more often.

Your A1C is based on a count of cells in a sample of your blood. It goes back 90 days. From the count of cells in different ages and stages, they can approximate what your normal BG has been for the 90 day period.

There is a warning, but they are just waiting for FDA approval for some weird reason I can’t remember - it has to do with the ability to clean the inside of the pdm or something. I spoke to Insulet and Abbott at the chidren with diabetes conference and got the same info from both. Also - the new “freestyle” and “freestyle lite” strips are exactly the same strip but they get more shelf space if they market them as two different ones. Not the same as the “old” strips but we are using the new ones with no problem.

I don’t think we should have to think about diabetes so much!

My son is wanting to go into Bio Medical Engineering (actually Mechanical Engineering with a medical specialty) so he can fix all the “stupid” design problems with insulin pumps, cannulas, testers, etc. He has lots of ideas and a lot of things he wants to change. He’s keeping a list.

I did not want to discourage him by telling him to just cure diabetes (that actually is done in the Bio Medical Engineering major - we all hope) !

I’m sorry you are had issues, it is likely just the pdm.

Our failure rate is usually around 5%. If it’s higher than that, there are little changes you can make.

My DD started losing her pods this summer while swimming. The weather was also triple digits with high humidity and I think that contributed to it. Mastisol under the pod and Opsite Flexifix over the pod fixed it. I don’t really consider that a product failure, we were putting it through pretty tough conditions that would test any adhesive

We had various problems at start up. Static seemed to be an issue, and also occlusions and pods that detach from the white adhesive patch. A little doublefaced tape under the pod works wonders for us. Store the pods with a dryer sheet.

I think if we used the pod straight out of the box, our failure rate would be higher. My DD LOVES being tubeless, and I love it for her, so it is worth a little extra effort to get the product to work.

You do have to remember that all pumps have occasional problems (with MM for example, we had pump errors and a lot of site issues). It is stressful when you have reoccuring pod problems, but I think most can be worked out if you are committed to staying with the system.

I had back to back to back failures on priming with refrigerated insulin. Zero since then (on priming) while using room temp insulin. Don’t know if that’s a factor or not… By the numbers, I seem to remember hearing on a quarterly call that the target is >97% defect free (or <3% defective pods). Wish I could cite the source, but can’t.

On the activating, I have filled a pod and not heard the beep beep. Putting the syringe back in an then out a 2nd time (not drawing in or pushing out) triggers the acknowledgement beep beep signal. I usually put in 150-175 units (200 around the holidays :))