Newbie pumper questions

Ok…I’ve had my t:slim hooked up for about a week, now. I was hoping some experienced folks might be able to help with some questions:

  • what do you do with all the trash? The infusion set inserted has a needle that was in me. Does that need to go in a sharps container? How do you dispose of it? Also, the tubing has a needle at the end.
  • Any preferred infusion sets? I used the t:90 and t:30. Prefer the t:90. It only comes with 2 and 4 foot tubing and I think I need 3 feet. Are there other good options that people like? Seems like lots of Leur lock choices.
  • seems like I am responding differently to exercise. I assume it’s because I have all fast acting basal now. Is this a common thing? Any rules of thumb?

Thanks as always for your help!

I assume you were on Lantus or the equivalent before going on the pump? In which case yes: the daily basal dose is going to run quite a bit lower, and I also find that fast-acting Novolog or Humalog is much more reactive to exercise than Lantus.

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We use our old empty Coffee canisters as sharps containers and, yes, everything that has a ‘needle’ as part of it, should go into a sharps. Any extraneous trash/containers/wrappers that are NOT needles, or contain needles, we just put in plain trash. Once you have your “sharps” container filled up, wrap tape around the lid, secure it nicely and write “SHARPS BioHazard. Do Not Recycle.” Once you have it secured and labeled, you can toss it in regular refuse trash bin. Anyone that comes into contact with it will know what it is.

NOTE: Some jurisdictions may have laws regarding sharps, where they can be disposed of, which container (if at all), etc., so check your local laws before dropping your sharps into a trash container.

I use the t:90 and put the needle tip (capped) into the inserter device. It fits nicely and works like a sharps container. I toss the capped inserter device into the trash. I toss everything else directly into the trash. I had watched a t:slim insertion video, and that’s what the person in the video had done, which is where I got the idea. I feel confident that unless someone is really thoroughly searching through my trash, there is no risk to tossing it all in the trash.

I always go with longer tubing. You can always loop it and tuck it in to a waistband, but it gives you more flexibility.

I defer to others for your question on exercise… It’s something I should have more experience with, but I do not. :wink:

Cartridge fill needle and the introducer needle from the infusion set go in a sharps container. I just toss the rest in the trash, but you might want to check your local laws regarding what needs to go where.

I use the comfort short. The t:90 cannulas kept getting kinked under my skin. I think the best thing to do though is to ask for samples (I got a few of a couple of different styles from the Tandem trainer) and see what works best for you.

Yep, it’s common. I usually have to run a temp basal of 40% when doing even moderate exercise. For days that I have regular exercise (schedule-wise), I actually set up a separate delivery profile.

Hi all, Just started using Tandem t-slim x2 on Monday. First time using a pump and so far, so good! Don’t laugh…but I have a dumb question. I was supposed to change everything out yesterday but there was a lot of insulin left in the cartridge. Right now, i have 25 units left in the cartridge, and that is almost a day’s worth.

I remember a video i saw that showed how to extract the remaining insulin so you could load it into new cartridge but i can’t find it. Any ideas?

Am i being beyond cheap? I just hate to squander perfectly good medicine, plus i’m on new insurance & have no idea what the next vial of insulin will cost me.

Thanks for your feedback :blush:

I don’t have the T-slim or know exactly how it operates, but I usually just unhook the tubing from the infusion set’s cannula next to my skin, and insert a new infusion set, and then hook the tubing back on, and give myself a bolus of .5 units to fill the new cannula with insulin.

and you’re not cheap, you are thrifty!

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I struggle in general with the amount of waste associated with pumping. The X2 is a little weird about the cartridge fill. It never seems to recognize all of the insulin. I usually fill the cartridge with 200 units. With 20 units to fill the tubing, I end up with about 160 in the cartridge. That is enough to last me 9 days. I will change infusion sets 3 times on one cartridge. I change the infusion set every time I change a cartridge. If you use 25 units a day, you should be able to get at least 6 days out of a cartridge if you want to try that approach.

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You should change your set every three days maximum to avoid lipoatrophy/lipodystrophy.

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Yes. The instructions all say that you need to change cartridge, tubing and infusion set all at the same time. I was just saying that I can change the set every 3 days but change cartridge and tubing less frequently with no ill effects.

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Thanks for the info :blush:

LOL Yup :+1:

Here’s that video i mentioned. She extracts leftover insulin from pump & tubing before discarding.