Occlusions not replaced anymore?

So I gave my bolus and sat down to Easter dinner with my family last night, and after I had only eaten a few tasty bites I got the dreaded beep of doom…and sure enough it was an occlusion. Luckily I only live a block away from my mom’s house, so my mom and aunt quickly packed up my dinner “to go” and I went home and changed the pod. Then I called OmniPod to report the pod as usual, but this time I got a different response than all the other times I’ve called with occlusions. The lady on the other end said, “Welllllllll…occlusions are considered ‘site issues’ and not really issues with the pod itself, so I’ll replace this one, but please be aware in the future that we don’t replace pods due to occlusions.” Huh. That’s weird, because they have replaced them probably about a dozen times for me before, however it’s been more than a year since I had an occlusion. Did they change their policy in that year? Any thoughts as to why?

I think they changed their policy almost 2 years ago. They also used to give you extra pods if you lost a lot of insulin, they don’t do that any more either.

The same thing happened to me last week. I reported an occlusion and was told it was a site issue also, no replacement. I have only been using the omnipod for about two weeks so I figured it was normal.

Been on the OmniPod since June, and as far as I know, that’s always been the policy (no replacements for occlusions, period). Of course, from what I’ve seen it’s basically based on the honor system; they have no way of knowing until they get the pod in question to Insulet HQ, by which time they have long since given the replacements, and not always even then, as sometimes I’m forced to physically destroy a pod to stop the beeping.

Are you sure you actually used the word “occlusion” in past cases?

At any rate, the way the OmniPod system treats occlusions is a major annoyance. With my previous two pumps through 8 years of pumping, an occlusion would generate a warning & suspend the pump, but 19 times out of 20 simply resuming the pump would fix things, meaning it was really a false alarm; there weren’t that many With the OmniPod there are a lot more such events, and every one means a waste of a pod & insulin.

I hope they will address this in future versions.

I just started on the pod in January and I was told in my training that occlusions are not replaced by Insulet as they are a site issue. The gist I got was that my training should indicate which sites will be acceptably “soft” and if I use any other site I could get an occlusion and they won’t replace them. I guess that thinking makes sense to me - Insulet should not have to replace pods if I choose to put them in a very lean or unapproved site.

However, both of the occlusions I’ve had have been on tried and true placements (both on my side/flank). So, theoretically their policy works, but its kind of a bummer in real life…

Yes! The wasted pod is not what bothers me so much as all that wasted insulin!

Started last September and they told me occlusions are not relaced. I’ve only had a couple, maybe even only one, since then and ther were definitely due to poor site selection.

I also probably had an occlusion on my very first pod due to poor site selection, but it did not alarm. The cannula kinked but the insulin ended up leaking out from somewhere. My trainer came back the next day to check up on me and replaced it right there on teh spot.

Yep, you’re right…they won’t replace occlusions. They will still replace pods that error during priming or that fail to activate while you are filling with it with insulin.

You can easily pull 90% of the insulin back out of the pod when it fails. After filling your new pod just use the same needle to pull the insulin out of the old one. Omnipod doesnt recommend it but I have been doing it for 3 years and have never had an issue.

I think that only works if priming was completed. I had a spate of priming failures and lost 200 units each time. If anyone figures out how to get the pod to release its vacuum death-grip, let me know!

I think? I read a suggestion once to put the plastic needle cap (where the cannula comes out) back on if you can’t get the insulin out the first time. I always have to hold mine up to draw it out, but it comes out fine.

OOOoo - you may have stumbled on something I didn’t think about…

When the pod fails during priming, the rubber cap thing is still on the cannula - maybe that’s WHY the insulin won’t come back out - I will try taking it off next time! Thanks for the idea :slight_smile:

Ha ha - yes maybe I wrote that up backwards. Glad you knew what I was trying to say!

Hi Carrie sorry your dinner was upset. As has been stated occlusions are not a pod malfunction so I can see where they are not at fault. However better directions on instalations would help. Every body is different but for me the proceedure for a no occlusion instalation has more to do with holding down on the back of the pod during the cannula instalation than where I put it. Had as many as any one else until I changed. Pinching did not do any good and any pressure on the front end was a sure occlusion. Looking at the angle it is easy to see why. Try this and give some feedback. If it doesn’t work I’ll keep quiet but sure works for me.

Julie draw an equal amount of air into your siringe and inject it. It will go hard but if you work it you can exchange the air for your insulin have to push and let the insulin push back but it works. Good luck and hope you don’t get to practice much.

Michael, I don’t understand the reasoning of holding down the back of the pod at all. We always hold down the top near the cannula and have never had an occlusion. Where do you wear the pods? Pinching for us was hit or miss and then Insulet told me that they now tell people to press down on the top because it helps prevent the kickback when the cannula inserts. Made perfect sense to me and we have done it ever since.