OmniPod. Specifically My Problems With It

Okay, I’m new on here and just need to know if I’m one of the only ones this has happened to. I’ve been using the Omnipod off and on for about two years now, and before that, I was a dedicated Medtronic fan. I LOVE that I don’t have to deal with any tubes anymore, but that is one of the only perks I’ve found.

Over the past two years I’ve had two infected sites (that I can recall), both of which ended with high blood sugars for a few days as well as some gross cystic infections I had to attempt to figure out. However, within the past WEEK I’ve had two infections. One on the back of my arm and after taking the pod off a week ago the lump under my skin (marble-sized) has not changed whatsoever). The other was on my stomach; when I took off the pod yesterday the pocket of air that the cannula pokes through, you know, with the little clear part you look through to make sure that the cannula is inserted, was filled with blood (which happened to the previous one as well) and left a nasty bruise along with a smaller lump like the one on my arm.

So I guess my first question is how often does this happen to others? When I went to change it out yesterday I was so mad at it being infected again that I just got back on Lantus (which is crazily going well for once). I use the back and inner parts of my arms as well as my abdomen for sites and I always switch them up.

Lastly, There was one point this week where I put a new pod on and everything seemed relatively fine, no pain or anything, but I immediately started running high. After about 8 hours of giving corrections and still running high, It flashed pod error and I changed it. What was terrifying was that when I went to draw the insulin out of the omnipod (because I’m not going to waste the insulin I had just put in there) it was cloudy and milky. I’m 100% positive it wasn’t that way when I put the insulin in the pod 8 hours prior, and none of the insulin from that vial looks that way. Has anyone else ever put completely fine insulin in a pod and had it go bad like that? It really freaked me out.

This has never happened to me. I have also never had infection develop at the pod site. I am pretty prone to infection, though. I had MRSA 3 times in one year.

For the past month I’ve been using a V-Go, which is similar in that it is mechanical and tubeless. I have to change it every day. Several times I’ve had a small amount of blood in the little pokey-pocket thing, and twice I’ve had a lot (and bled quite a bit). Yesterday was one of those days.

I haven’t had an infection yet but I am still pretty bruised from yesterday.

Hmm, cannot speak to the cloudy insulin part. I do find now and then a pod sems to be giving me some highs. If I just started it, I will ramp up the basal for a few hours and it often solves the problem. As for site infections, are you possibly having issues with the adhesives or something in the pods? I use an IV Prep antibacterial sticky wipe before I out my pods on and have really had far less infections than I had with regular infusion sets. Perhaps you need to isolate and troubleshoot each of these matters. Best wishes. The pods certainly give a degree of freedom but not if they bring problems with them!

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I’ve never had an infection, I know I’ve heard about someone that said whenever she tried to put her pod on her stomach she would get an infection but has no issues with it anywhere else.

I’ve had some blood sometimes although never have I’ve seen it through the window, only when I’ve pulled it off. I have had a few failures I try to catch as soon as possible. My Bg skyrockets fast without any insulin, so I am quicker to change it just in case and like to give a shot as a back up when I change it. Omnipod will replace them and I am okay with it because I love my Omnipod.

I am slightly wondering if maybe you are developing an allergy to the cannula? It reminds me of when I had a sliver of tooth left when an implant was tried to be placed and I ended up with an infection they think because my body was trying to reject either the tooth piece or the implant and I ended up with an infection.

I’ve never had insulin be milky or bad when I’ve withdrawn it back out of the pod (by the way a lot of us do this as we have an inherent desire not to waste the insulin, but Omnipod doesn’t recommend it and will pay for wasted insulin in a pod that went bad besides replacing the pod.)

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It sounds to me like you’re having some sort of reaction to the pod itself, either the cannula or the adhesive. I have had some minor irritation at the insertion site from time to time, but nothing like you have described. I also, on rare occasions, seem to get poor absorption at a particular site (I use the backs of my arms almost exclusively), but I just adjust my boluses to try to stay within range. I hope you get your issues sorted out, but for one reason or another, there are individuals to whom the pods are just not suited, and maybe you’re one of them. Good luck!

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You might want to call and talk to a rep at insulet. I have found that the folks I talk to there are diabetics also. Makes it easier for them to understand what we are going through. I have had some of my pods insulin be a little cloudy but I still use it, especially when I just changed pods. The bleeding I have had because I take a baby aspirin every day. Infections once in a while but not that often. I usually just put sulfadiazine and a bandaid and it takes care of the infection. But the thing is what works for one might not work for another so talk to your endo too.

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I find that the cannula insertion will be more red and irritated looking if I had the pod on a site that might get “rocking” in place. A spot where the pod is on more of a curve like your arm and one end of the pod had more pressure against it like lifting boxes, hitting door frames, etc. When I first started podding I put a dab of Neosporin and a spot band-aid on every cannula spot. Two years later I don’t bother. I do find that some pods (even from the same box) will leave more of an adhesive mark than others. IDK why. I did nail a capillary one time and it bled under the adhesive. Never had a lump under the cannula site. Hope your reactions are one offs and it settles down for you as I would hate to give up pods!