Infusion sets - Contact Detach

After reading multiple posts by Zoe and others about how much they like Contact Detach sets (Medtronic Sure-T), I recently ordered a box as part of my last pump supply order. To tell you the truth, I didn't do much homework about them and was a bit dismayed to find that they are just metal versions of 90 degree sets such as Insets, Mios, and Quicksets.

I have used two sets so far. I didn't mind the insertion and wasn't too annoyed by having two adhesive patches. I always plan my pump sites so that I never lay on them while sleeping. When my Dex G4 site is on my right side, I use my right side for pump sites and sleep on my left side for the 2-3 weeks of the sensor life. When my sensor is on the left, my pump sites are also on the left and I sleep on my right side. My first Contact Detach site hurt a bit and ended up having blood showing 3 inches in the tubing after 24 hours. So that one was abandoned. The second one lasted a day and a half before it completely lost its adhesive and I discovered it loose in my underwear. Fortunately it was quickly found before I went too long without insulin!

I have always done poorly with straight-in sets. I'm not as thin as I used to be, but I am still somewhat thin and tend to get pain, bruising, and poor results with 90º sets. For some reason I expected the Contact Detach sets to have a very short metal needle. Unfortunately it is just as long as the teflon tubes of the other 90 degree sets.

One thing I did like about my two Contact Detach sets is that right away I had great absorption of my insulin. I use manually inserted Comfort Shorts (Medtronic Silhouettes) and tend to have highs after insertion unless I use a huge prime and extended basals for an hour or two.

I will use my remaining Contact Detach sets. Right now I have two bruises from the two sets that I have used. In a few weeks, maybe I will have ten bruises! So back to my Comfort Shorts. Maybe they can design an angled set with a metal needle. Until then, I'll stay with what works...

They already have a angled set with a bent needle...It was the first infusion set. Remember that any steel needle infusion set is going to always have a sharp end that will continually cut and poke tissue every time it moves. The plastic cannula has a smooth rounded end and when the body warms up the plastic softens and becomes more comfortable and less irritating equaling longer wear time before rejection starts. Many indaviduls have trouble with steel infusion sets and Medtronic realized this from the beginning and quickly started producing the newer infusion sets, there comment about steel sets was if we did not develop the new sets then pumping insulin would have been a complete failure in the long run. I start rejecting the steel sets on the first day and was never able to use them without irritation and bruising. I guess some indaviduls can tolerate them but not me.

I find the adhesive on the contact-detach sets, especially on the pad with the needle, is horrible. I've had sets simply fall out after a day even though I'm not hard on them. I tolerate the steel needle sets better than I do teflon sets, but I'm allergic to nickel so they do get irritated and itchy fairly quickly, usually within a few hours of insertion (not as bad as teflon did for me, though). Like you, I do find that I don't go high after site changes like I used to with teflon sets. It's great that we have so many infusion sets to choose from these days - and I do believe there is an angled metal set, though I can't remember the name.

Hi Laddie. Sorry the Contact Detach didn't work so well for you. I'm a little confused by your comment that they are "just metal versions of 90 degree sets like...". It's so confusing when we all use different sets with different names! Are the ones you named manual insertion or automatic insertion? The thing that I like most about the Contact Detach is that they are manual insertion and very different from the other Animas brand automatic sets with plastic canulas. They can become uncomfortable, though I definitely don't experience what John said about them always poking. But when they do the advantage of a manual set is I can just move it another place and tape it down which I can't do with the automatics.

Yes, Jen is right, we are all different which is why it's always great to try different types. But I do wish it weren't so confusing to try and compare one brand to another without a long explanation.

The 90-degree sets just mean that the needle/cannula goes in at a 90-degree angle relative to the skin. The angled sets are ones that go in at an angle (like 30 degrees). Either type of set can have manual insertion or automatic inserters.

I just remembered, too, that the Contact-Detach sets DO come in two lengths, a 6 mm length and a 9 mm length. Laddie, if you are using the 9 mm ones it may be worth checking out the 6 mm ones to see if you find those more comfortable (I personally found they leaked and bled more for me than the 9 mm ones, but we're all different, and I'm not skinny at all so don't have that "issue"!).

I do have the 6 mm length and it looks hugely long. Maybe I am thinking way back to the earliest bent needle set when I consider what I expected this set to be. For sure I should have done more homework on the set, but I think that I would have tried it anyway even if I’d known it was a straight-in set. Those of you who like them are very persuasive!

Jen, thanks for the confirmation that the adhesive is sometimes not very good on these sets. The circle without the cannula was still stuck on tight, but the insulin-dispensing one was happily flopping around in my underwear. The Comfort Shorts have a bigger adhesive patch and maybe that is one reason that they never fall off.

I know that insulin needs to get deep enough into our tissue to work, but I wonder if a 4mm set would work. I’m thin, but not skeletal by any means. Plus I think that children would really appreciate shorter cannulas. One thing I like about manually inserting Comfort Shorts is that I don’t have to insert them all of the way in and often don’t.