What's the worst that can happen when you go onto pump?

Really glad I asked this question ‘cause I received enough positives to convince me to give it a try. The negatives about pumping will keep me aware and wary. I start pump tomorrow…no more alarms to take lantus at night…just alarms to adjust my pump. Hmmn! Pretty exciting really and scary at the same time. No looking back now though I’m about to trial it…course if the car doesn’t start tomorrow morning I’ll just have to forget the whole idea for a long time…jus’ joking! I’m actually glad and can’t wait to make the change now. Thanx everyone I value all your contributions.

What line were inserted? Was is for the insulin pump or something else? Did they do an insertion for you?

i am almost certain that pumping in of it self, can not cause death (which is what “code blue” means) any more than mdi can. when you deal with insulin at all there is an inherent risk (i know that you know all of this). a pump is just a needle stuck in all of the time, more comfortable and all, but none the same. pumpers also have heart attacks like anyone else and they have other issues

I honestly tried to think of the worst, and came up with nothing. I have been on the pump for 8 years now and I can say it has always been one of my best decisions in my health care. There are several factors to a situation you describe, “My thoughts and prayers are with this guy” but I too don’t feel the pump would be one of them. I know you will come to be very glad with your decision to become a pumper. It’ll give you much greater control and freedom as you go through each day with diabetes. Happy pumping!

The only pumper I know who has ever had bad things happen to him does it all to himself. He doesn’t test enough (maybe once or twice a day tops), he eats totally garbage and doesn’t carb count well, skips eating all day sometimes, and doesn’t have his basals set right. His work had to call 911 twice last month because he went so low he passed out. After being revived, he tells the EMT “oh, i guess I took my insulin and then forgot to eat”. So his issues with the pump come from very poor self care.

If you follow your doctor’s advice and take care of yourself, your risk of a code blue is really not there (at least not from the pump). You will love the freedom of a pump. It is nerve wracking when you start off but you will get the hang of it!

I just started on the pump this week. One thing that worries me a tad is that on MDI’s I had Lantus in my system most of the time, even if I forgot to take my Humolog with me somewhere…I just couldn’t eat carbs, but would be OK. Conversely, if I forgot to dose my Lantus, I could still bolus. On the pump, if I find myself without insulin due to pod failure or forgetting to change my pod,or whatever, I am without any insulin and that is potentially very dangerous I am told. That scernario is unlikely but a new concern none the less. It would seem that any problem with pumping would be user error…not having what you need or not using the tools properly.

i assume that you are on the omnipod… so am i. i always carry insulin, and syringe with me just in case of something like that. i have my little test kit case with spare meter, strips (both meters are freestyle) finger poker and vial of insulin and a syringe. you are supposed to carry two extra pods with you, but i am hardly ever so far from home that i need to.

The worst that could happen when on the pump? Having to go back to multiple daily injections (MDI).

I don’t love having to do insertions, or finding fresh insertion skin, or being tethered, or paying for the supplies, or testing my blood sugar more, or figuring out what clothes make it easier to wear, or the fact that it’s not my favorite color, or dealing with software that isn’t as user-friendly as it should be BUT the pump is a huge improvement over MDI.

After what I estimate to be over 29,450 insulin injections and 850 pump infusion set insertions, I’m a pump believer. If you use it well, it’s a great tool for being more in-touch with what controls your diabetes. Of course, even after 7 years as a pumper, I have LOTS to learn.

Thanks, lev. I need to get pod savvy and put together my traveling kit. It would be nice to think we could be able to come and go carefree, but it’s not to be…at least at this point. My purse is heavy…I don’t know what you guys do.

Just thought of something…does your insurance allow you both insulins? I don’t think mine will cover the cartridges and the vial. Do you end up throwing the unused cartridge out and replacing it every month?

I’ve been pumping 18 years (anybody had theirs longer?), and never been to hospital because of my diabetes. You definitely have to test more often, but you get used to it. And I think the biggest risk, as someone here said, is you only have short-acting insulin on board, so if there is an occlusion or kink or some other delivery problem, you can get into trouble faster. But that’s why you test more. It helps to have good training and support. We’ll be here to help you with the transition.

A lot of things could have happened with him, like Suzanne said, or not even related to his pump.

I’ve been on the MiniMed 522 pump for one month. I am using QuickSets at my endocrinologist’s direction. I can’t change anything without a Rx from the doctor or the supplier can’t help because of Medicare rules. I’ve had three failed infusions with my BG quickly going into the high 300s. The frequent tests kept it from being worse. The failures may be my own fault because the insertions may have been flawed by my inexperience. The first two failures were with 6mm canulas and yesterday with a 9mm.

With all of this, I see a leveling out of my BGs in the high double digits and low triples. I would have gone on a pump much earlier in my 52 years IF I had insurance that would have covered it.

The worse thing that could happen would be that a pump quit working without you knowing it. Todays’ pumps are reliable enough that if one quit working, the alarms and whistles would alert you to that fact and you could then compensate. The next would be that a site quit absorbing or the insulin became ineffective. If you are testing at the schedule set for you, you should be able to catch a high sugar before it becomes a problem. Once setup, you should experience a decrease in severe lows. Pumping carries a large amount of responsibility and you have to be vigilent about your condition. If you’re not ready to take control of your disease in a major way, the pump may not be for you. If you are, pumping will change the way you treat your disease in a most positive way. Good luck!

As long as you are vigilant about testing, there is no reason to be afraid! I felt the exact same way when I first got my pump. I had read about the risks of DKA due to not having any long term insulin present, but tesing and being prepared with extra supplies in case of an emergency has, thankfully, avoided any mishaps. In the case of the gentleman at the hospital, it could just be coincidence that he wore a pump, and maybe there was another issue there. Hope he’s alright.

Don’t be worried about pumping. You will be so glad that you did it. Like any other new experience, it’s scary at first, but once you get the hang of it, you will love it!

Good luck!

I’ve always had Disetronics (now called Accu-chek). I started with the H-tron, and now have the Spirit. I’d never, ever change, because you get two pumps! If something happens, rare occurrence that it does, I just switch over to my second pump, call Disetronics, and they send me a new second pump the next day. I haven’t had to use shots in all of the 18 years. I don’t have to have a backup plan if I drop it in water, crash it while bike riding, or if it just decides to have an electronics breakdown. It gives me one less thing to worry about. Customer service is fantastic, and there’s little waiting, and no “attitude” ever.

It all depends on how much you study your pump information beforehand, how well you know your body and how it reacts to insulin and how frequent your contact with your doctor’s staff is. For me, it is no more dangerous then multiple daily injections were — I still have a basal and I still have a bolus that I calculate before I eat anything. Now I just have a machine attached to me that basically does a lot of the basal thinking (and yes, some of the bolusl math) for me.

This person at the hospital may have misjudged what he should have dosed for food…or had the flu…it really could have been anything. If they were saying “it’s one of our pumpers” they were most likely saying it so that who ever was going to treat him would know that he had one attached. Nothing more.

Having a pump does not mean you’re not in control anymore…if anything it means that you now have more control.

You could get your doctor to say that you need more insulin per month so that you would have an extra bottle of insulin for emergencies. You know, old school, with the bottle of insulin and a regular needle. :wink: That’s what I do with my Ping, any how.

Thanks all, I really appreciate for your responses. I’m feeling much more reassured with everyone being so positive. Dave, your threat is priceless…really convinced me! Power blackouts here due to stormy weather have prevented me reading them 'til now. I think the apparent panic surrounding the poor guy at the hospital impacted on me. Miscalculating carbs and overdosing with insulin, having faulty or blocked lines, or carelessness, seem to be risks. My habit is to test myself before & after each meal, often in between, so being vigilant shouldn’t be a problem. I think I’ll ring in to ask staff to clarify what was happening with the emergency patient. I’ll be on a Medtronic Paradigm 722. How does that one rate with experienced pumpers?

Lauren, do you carry the insulin and pens around with you? Back up pods aren’t all that effective without insulin either.

with the omnipod you take insulin from the vial and inject it into the pod… so it is just the one kind