Pod sometimes sluggish and sometimes great. Why?

Some days my pod is sluggish and sometimes it seems to work perfectly. For example, I wake up at 210BG. I haven’t eaten since dinner and tested before bed at which time I was 150 (and bloused for that number). The next day, or 2 or 3, I will wake up at 82 but haven’t changed food, exercise, stress etc.
Also, once I start the day high, I need to test and bolus repeatedly and it takes hours to bring that down. Finally I started giving myself a needle shot to bring down my BG if I start the day high and stay there after testing twice. It seems like a little “nudge” from a needle shot jump starts the pod. I know this probably sounds crazy.
I’d appreciate input and tips.

I don’t know the actual answer to your questions but I have some ideas.

In this situation I think it’s likely that either your overnight basal is insufficient or that your evening meal raised your blood glucose longer than you’re used to. That can happen if you’ve eaten more protein than usual or even a higher carb higher fat meal.

We’d all like to think that if we do the same thing day after day then we will experience the same blood glucose results. While this can be generally true, diabetes does not play fair and unexpected blood glucose numbers are part and parcel to diabetes.

These are classic dawn phenomena symptoms with its insulin resistant characteristics. The best way to combat dawn phenomena with a pump is to adjust overnight basal rates upwards to get a flatter and in-range blood glucose profile. Remember that you need to change a basal rate two hours before you want to see the effect. Higher blood glucose numbers will often take more insulin to drop the BG than a lower high. In other words it can take more insulin to drop a 250 to 200 than it will take to drop a 150 to 100.

It could be coincidental and you just needed some extra insulin at that point. Or it might mean that your insulin infusion site is getting “stale” and does not absorb as well during the third or even late in the second day. Trying fresh sites that you’ve never used before might help here.

Sorry I can’t be more conclusive but I think you can use some trial and error testing to address your higher BGs. Good luck.

1 Like

On average, how long do you wear a Pod before changing it?

What sites do you use?

We seem to be going through something similar. Although after nine and a half years of using the Pod, this isn’t the first time I’ve wondered about the cause of erratic bgs.

What you’ve described, we’ve definitely seen. And many others have as well. A little more background might help us provide inout. How long have you been using OmniPod, have you used another pump and not found similar issues.

One possible issue, if it is indeed the Pod, is placement and whether you are applying pressure as you sleep. I’d also be curious to know what insulin you are using and if you see higher bgs on the third day, or is it unrelated to length of wear.

These are all the things that are going through my own head at the moment. I’m not sure if we are having an insulin issue, Pod issue, or just teenage hormone issue. :slight_smile:

1 Like

Probably a little bit of each, heavy on the teenage hormones! :slightly_frowning_face:

Thank you for your response! I think more trial and error is in order. I hesitate to change my overnight basal because sometimes I wake up and my BG is at 62 or 82. If my basal was lower, those times I would be really low.

1 Like

I use my legs (upper thigh) and arms (bicep and back of arm). I change the pump every three days.

I’ve used the pod a little over a year. I’ve never used any other pump. I wear the pump on my legs and my arms and think it is placed so that I don’t sleep on top of it i.e. front of thighs and biceps. The higher BG occur sometimes on the first day of the pod or the second or the third–no pattern! I use novalog insulin. I broke down and called my doctor’s office and they called back to basically say “sometimes that is the way diabetes works and your A1C is not bad (6.9) and I should not get hung up so much on the numbers”.
Thanks for your reply

1 Like

I experience this as well with the Pod. However, I don’t think it’s really the Pod. I’ve noticed that if I have been using one location a bit too much the absorption is less predictable. As soon as I move it to a newer location I get good results. Keep rotating…

1 Like

I no longer wear a pod but saw this topic and had to comment. I had been on a medtronic for over 10 years and switched to Omnipod. My Dr. and rep told me it would change my quality of life and I would be taking much less insulin.
The exact opposite happened. I stuck it our for a year and half. Everyday was a challenge with the pod. I am convinced the short cannula at the 45 degree angle isn’t long enough. I’m very lean about 20 % body fat so it wasn’t me having too much fat for the short length. I would give a blous every two hours some days and nothing would happen. I just wasn’t absorbing it. I A1c’s started to climb and I finally went back on medtronic with the Sure - T 90 degree 6 mm needle and I took less insulin actually didn’t even bolus.
Now I am on Tresiba and actually forget I have diabetes it is so stable. It’s the first time I feel like I truly have a continuous delivery of insulin.

1 Like

This is very interesting because it explains the sheer randomness of the lows and highs. Not food. Not stress not exercise not,anything. I can’t see what changes so randomly for no reason. Works 2 days and not the next three. Works three then not 2. If the cannula is too short and is getting jostled “loose” That would explain it. I’ve never used any other pump.

I am extremely positive and make the best out of everything. But the year and a half I tried to work with it was the hardest time of my pump life in 12 years. I wouldn’t eat at times, spend hours on the treadmill just waiting for it to work or get into my tissue or change a pod out as many as 3 times a day. The wasted insulin in those cases killed me. I take 13 unites a day so I was throwing tons of insulin away each pod.

I joined the forum today because I saw this post and wanted to reply. I like using Omnipod but I am very frustrated by the inconsistency! Some times the pods are great, and sometimes they seem flaky. I know every day is different as a T1D, but that’s not what I am seeing. What I am seeing is a huge difference in the absorption from one day to the next, and from one site location to the other.
Perhaps there is a difference in the insertion day? Like it works better or worse depending on how long the pod has been in place?
Perhaps the cannula length is a problem? Other pumps give you a choice of infusion length. I think the 6 mm is not long enough. Any thoughts on this?

Pam, I also take syringe doses to help bring my BG down. An IM dose in my calf muscle, followed by a couple miles of jogging brings it down very quickly! Of course, that sucks when it’s 2am. :slight_smile:

I had a similar five month failed Omnipod experience back in 2012. I know Omnipod has many success stories and that was one of the reasons I switched to it. Prior to that time I had been using insulin pumps for 25 years. I was glad I bailed at 5 months. Going back to my Ping and returning to good control was one of the happier days in my time with diabetes. @Ali4, I’m glad you found a more reliable system for you.

Everyone needs to find their own individual best match regarding insulin pumps. No pump is consistent 100% of the time because, like you said, D is not a consistently consistent disease. (And the human body is also annoyingly inconsistent at times.) For my daughter, the OmniPod system works almost exceptionally well. She’s used it long enough that we’ve learned which sites to avoid (or use with a 24/7 increased “temporary” basal rate.) I agree: I suspect the shorter, angled cannula doesn’t work for everyone. But some cannulae don’t work well for some people regardless of the pump. There’s simply no choice RE cannula specs with Pods, however.

1 Like

we had a big discussion about this a couple years ago, the 3rd day seems to be problematic for many

and a big welcome to our community @Eric2, glad you’ve joined us!

I always find that the 3rd day is the worst for me on the pod. It’a always on my stomach/hips or arms. Definitely a pattern for me. I usually don’t make it to when the pod actually expires due to the high numbers even though there’s typically enough insulin to get me to the expiration.

Thanks for the reference to the 3rd day discussion! I will check it out. Still learning my way around here!

1 Like

In regards to the “3rd” day. For those reading this still using the OmniPod I recommend getting the Glooko app/website set up. Its free and the helpful bit is that it will show you clearly your control on day 1 day 2 and day 3, over time. This way you will clearly see if its a day 3 issue or not.

I have Glooko. I actually tried using it for the day-by-day comparison, but there was a problem because what Glooko calls a “day” is from midnight to midnight. Unless you always change your pod at midnight, the Glooko comparison will not be an accurate reflection of a 24 hours period. I think we are interested in 24 hours segments, not “days”, right?

I have sent 2 requests to Glooko for this. 1) Allow data to be exported to an excel format. That way you could key certain times and group your data by 24 hour time segments, instead of the current day-of-the-week type of day. 2) Allow Glooko to group data by Pod. Currently, the only way to do this is to go through it manually.

If anyone knows of an easy way to do this (not having to manually go through line-by-line and adding numbers) please share!