New to this board and New to Omnipod

Hi Everybody,

I am new to this board and new to OmniPod but not new to diabetes. Been type 1 for 50 years. I was diagnosed when there was no carb counting, no insulin pump, no glucometers and no CGMs. I have been injecting for 50 years and when I started out, you peed in a cup to check for sugar in your urine. Isn't technology grand?!! :0)....

So anyhow my endo finally convinced me to try pumping...I selected Omnipod because..well vanity basically. I counldn't and still can't imagine dealing with the tubing. I don't always have a pocket to put the pump in/on. I wear belt. I have an active busy life and fortunately am in pretty good health and good shape for a 55 year old lady...

I wear a Dexcom CGM and love that (on my abdomen). My blood sugars have been pretty good and the Dexcom has helped....I have had an A1C as low as 6.3 and range between that and 6.9 normally. That is with injections....

So why switch to the pump?? Well sometimes it was inconvenient to inject, like during a lunch business meeting....OK...And my endo was really saying it would make my life easier.....

I like the technology of the pod..But I am 3 weeks in and my blood sugars are sky high. My Dexcom looks like a yo-yo.....No nice relatively even lines for me. I am pumping for EVERTHING I eat, even things I didn't used to have to inject for like coffee, a handful of peanuts..And when BS goes up, it goes up fast and then seems to get stuck...

I am working with the trainer from Insulet and she and I are working with the diabetes nurse manager at my endo office. Seems like my new 100 is now 200 and where my BS used to go from the 100 range to 200 range when I ate , it now goes from 200 to into the 300's....Just did an adjustment to my nightime basal but it was still a iittle high this morning.

I have been looking for a board with folks experienced with Omnipod for some advise and encouragement. I would like this to work, but I have untill 12/1/14 to return the pump and have been toying with the idea....But I really don't want to go back to injecting....


I have been using Omnipod for about 2-1/2 years and I love it overall... but this being my first pump, it took quite a while for me and my endocrinologist to get the basal rates right. Like, weeks and months. And we still make changes from time to time! My current basal rate bears no recognition to where we started. I've learned that at some times of day (late afternoon) I need hardly any basal insulin, while at other times of day (early morning) I need MUCH more. I think a lot of times the medical professionals working with us tend toward the conservative end of dosing to keep us from lows, but being consistently high is no fun at all. Sorry I can't offer specific/numeric advice, but I'd encourage you to stick with it - for me, it's the only pump because like you I don't want the tubing! (and, probably based on my erratic insulin needs that I've only recently figured out, long-acting insulin just wasn't cutting it for me) When you can get the Omnipod programmed right, it really does work well. It just takes a while to get there.

Welcome to Tudiabetes!

I am sure others with more longevity will come along to help too, but have you done any basal testing?

With the OmniPod I have six different basal rates; I wasn't able to do that with injections.

Gary Scheiner, author of "Think Like a Pancreas" addresses basal testing in his book and here:

It took me at least a month to get the basal rates and I:C ratios tuned in for different times of the day. This is the same for any pump. However once it is all set, you should be able to do better than you did with injections and with less hyper/hypo glycemia.

The problem is (at least for me) that the CDEs/endos tend to be too conservative with the initial settings for the pump to avoid hypos. So this results in high blood sugars until you (and they) get it adjusted.

Welcome to this lovely place we all call family
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Dear Ms. Ashua--
First of all, major congratulations to you for doing so well through 50 years of Type I DM ! Many years ago, I heard Dr. Irl Hirsch speak at a conference at the UW/Seattle, WA. Dr. Hirsch said that before Banting and Best developed injectable insulin in the 1920s, the average life expectancy of a person diagnosed with diabetes was six months. A person had DM for an unknown time before diagnosis, but I found that information to be sobering.
An RN/ARNP with Type I DM since 1986, I agree with the comments so far. Since hypoglycemia can occur quickly and is life threatening, there is certainly a desire to avoid that.
Even with doing 250 BG checks a month and 7 to 10 injections a day, my A1C was in the 9s and 10s. Within 3 months of beginning on the Omnipod in May of 2013, my A1C dropped to 7.7, where it has stayed. The insulin pump ARNP is fine with the 7.7 (I had failed on another pump that had tubing, which seemed to become easily snagged.)
Using Dexcom since 9-17, my numbers are coming down more. I am eager for my next A1C.
For me, the Dexcom gives me the assurance to increase the temp basal on my Omnipod, knowing that I will be notified if/when I begin to go low.
I don't have advice, but LOTS of encouragement.
The best to you as you continue managing your Type I DM !

Hi HPNpilot...

I agree about my endo being too conservative. I have been tempted a few times to take matters into my own hands and make small changes to the pump settings, but am a little leary of hypoglycemia. I have told the Insulet trainer that I have walked around with 60s and 70s and functioned fine. I remind them that I have the Dexoom which will beep like crazy if I go too low and I always keep glucose tabs on me in case I need quick carbs, but they are claim concern about me going too low....

Thanks jen627. I think I'm going to keep pushing on this one....I really do like the technology and it's nice not to have to think about the basal in the morning and evening the way I did when injecting...

Hi Tapestry,

No I haven't done any basal testing....This is actually the first I've heard of it. I did go to the link you provided and printed it out....I also am going to look for that book " Think Like a Pancreas". I totally believe that I am the best manager of my diabetes so the more information I have the better....Thanks for those resources.

Hi RuthieRugh,

thanks for your encouragement....I also encourage you...9-10 A1C to 7.7 is a drastic improvement. Hopefully your Dexcom will help it get even better. I truly love my Dexcom. It is a great tool to help with comping....You know when your going up and how fast and when your going down and how fast...Keep up the good work!

I felt the same way at first...but eventually took matters into my own hands.

The books "Pumping Insulin" and "Using Insulin" by John Walsh as well
as "Think Like a Pancreas" by Gary Scheiner are very helpful in learning how to make adjustments on your own.

Much of it you will already know from your years of experience... it may just be the pump part that is helpful.

Congratulations on getting the OmniPod. I have had Type 1 diabetes for 48 years, so I can relate to your early comments about having no accurate testing... we have, indeed, come a long way. I encourage you to stay with the OmniPod. I have now been on the Pod for over 5 years, and it has changed my life. Like with the injections, you will have adjustments that you have to make, but once you get the Pod set to your needs, you will wonder how you ever lived without it. Education is the key. Learn about pumping and very, very closely track your meals, meds, exercise, etc. Then go to your endo and have an honest discussion about what you think you should do to get under better control. Keep in mind that after 50 years of injections, you will have scar tissue and some sites that will not absorb as well as others. (I totally avoid my thighs after may years of injections there.) But the Pods give you so many other sites that you probably would not have used with the injections. Stay with the Pod; eventually, it will work for you too.