Omnipod cannula causing bumps + itching

I just wanted to thank you for your recommendation! I tried using Flonase under my latest pod, and ran today. No rash!! This is only my first try but so far very promising! Thanks!!

1 Like

Just paying it forward from others who’ve shared that tip when I had issues w/ the Dexcom adhesive, It hasn’t helped my Omnipod issue but I’m glad it’s working for you! :slightly_smiling_face:

1 Like

I had high hopes for the Omnipod (yay, tubeless!) but have had pretty bad experiences thus far after a few weeks of trying to make it work. The first two pods I tried didn’t seem to deliver any insulin. That was before I did the training with the Insulet rep, and the third pod worked fine. The fourth pod worked fine for a little over a day, then started to get really itchy and painful at the cannula site. I had a huge bump at the site when I removed the pod (only on for ~36 hours) that thankfully went away for the most part after 12 hours.

I’m on my 5th pod now and am having high BG after a low-carb breakfast. This pod has been on for <24 hours. I’ve tried 2 correction boluses but I’m worried the same thing is happening (site trauma causing delayed/no absorption). My rep has suggested Torbot skin tac, but I’m not sure if that will help with the bumps/site trauma, since I think the issue is the cannula and not the adhesive.

At this point, I’m ready to switch back to my Medtronic 670G. I hate having tubing and the anxiety around it (I have 2 small kids that run up to me and on one occasion ripped out the set). I thought the Omnipod was going to make things easier, but it’s added significantly more work and anxiety to my diabetes job. If anyone has tips on adhesives/prep other than what I see above (Flonase, I think I saw albuterol mentioned before also), please advise.

I should add that I don’t have issues with the Medtronic cannulas, even though those are plastic like the Omnipod ones (but maybe a smaller/thinner gauge?)

I think the OmniPod cannulas are Teflon. I’m not sure if there is much difference though between a plastic cannula and a Teflon one.

I’ve used OmniPod for several years. I’ve had problems with absorption too, but I don’t think it was due to the cannula. I do have bumps when I take it off, but I generally get the 72 hours and sometimes I’m into the 8-hour window too before I change it out.

I had what is called “tunneling”. I had always put the pod on my belly. Once I moved it off of my belly and stopped bolusing through it, the tunneling was resolved. You can use the search feature here to read more about tunneling. When this was happening my maximum bolus was 5 units and that was rare. So, I don’t think it was caused by too much insulin being delivered at one time. I never really did figure it out, except to say now that it is no longer on my belly and I only use it for basal, all is well with the world.

How much do you generally bolus? What’s your highest bolus? What about your basal dosing like?

I generally do about 10U/day of basal and 22-25U/day total. Boluses are almost never larger than 3-4U, usually in the 1-2U range. I looked at your post on tunneling and that could definitely be happening to me with the pod. The odd difference is that for me, I’m using almost virgin sites I rarely used before on the sides of my legs (most of the time I use back/side/abdomen).

I suspected a bad site after my high BGs this morning, and when I pulled the pod off, there was a pool of blood in the window and on the adhesive. Just for “fun,” I bolused a few units through the pod after removing it to see if I was getting any insulin at all; a small amount came out but not as much as I had bolused, so that helps explain the high BGs.

Weirdly, I’ve done 2 correction boluses on my Medtronic pump after yet another set change and haven’t come down too far yet. I opened this vial of insulin on 8/18, which is about 2 weeks ago, so it can’t be that.

If you only use Omnipod for basal, do you find that it’s still worth your while to fine-tune basals during the day? I know everybody’s different.

Yes, it helps. I go between a few different basal programs and there are five to six different time and rate changes. I like too that I can increase or decrease my basal by using a temp basal. I’m hopeful I’ll eventually be able to go back to using it for both basal and bolus.

I hope things eventually work out for you!

I also experience this on occasion. I’m still trying to resolve it. I tried using Flonase on the site prior to placing the pod but I don’t think that actually worked for me. For the last few pods, I used Skin-Prep prior to placing the pod. That so far, seems to help. Also, I changed the positioning of the pod. I used to place the pod horizontally on my abdomen. Now I’m placing the pod vertically, with the cannula on the top. I changed the positioning because my pods were falling off during exercise (running) starting to peel off on the heavy, reservoir side. This has helped, but I also started using Opsite tape, to tape down the sides of the pod to secure it better to my body. That also helped. No pods have fallen off!

1 Like

I’m taking a break from the pods for now. I had surgery last week and didn’t need the extra “overhead” of dealing with Omnipod issues. The Omnipod rep sent me some skin prep, barrier and other samples to try, so I’ll give it another go in a few weeks if I feel like it. But if there are 2-3 things I have to do before even getting the pod on, I’m not sure if it’s going to be worth it. With my pump, I just use an alcohol wipe and zap the infusion site in place.