Which Pump?

My doc has just prescribed an insulin pump–actually, he first referred me to an endo, but that doc wants 6 weeks of classes, $750 for the initial visit, and doesn’t take Medicaid. :frowning: So I’ve been referred to the rep who supplies pumps and training directly.

I’ve been on insulin for 20 years and still can’t control bGs, so I am more than willing to try the pump. But I have NO idea what to look for. I read a thread on the topic from January, and saw a lot of opinions. Many like the Animas PING, but I don’t know if there have been any developments I should know about.

I am 65, female, no danger of wearing a bikini, “brittle,” so I think I need CGM. Now using Levemir and Novolog. I have autoimmune diseases–am a bit concerned about site reactions.

What pump or combination of devices should I look at? Thanks~!

As you have learned, if you have read a number of pump threads, most everyone likes their pump best. After reading dozens of people who ask the same question you do, here is my response. (I have used MM since 1/01.)

  1. How much insulin do you take total each day? If it is above 40, I say go with a pump that has a 300 ml reservoir. The company line is “50 u or more.” Only MM, of the popular ones in the U.S., does this. That is why I started with MM but I have liked it and stayed with it.
  2. Those with low vision seem to like the Animus for its screen.
  3. How important is waterproofing to you? Only Animus guarantees that. Though any pump with a hairline crack will allow water in and ruin the pump. I don’t swim or get in water otherwise so it is not an issue for me. Well, except for showering and I disconnect for that. You cannot disconnect the pod for any reason but you can either the Animus or MM.
  4. All pumps are under warranty for 4 years. So if anything happens to them, they will replace it free.
  5. Medicare will not replace a pump for 5 years unless it breaks before then-and preferably not within your fault. So you will have the pump for 5 years under Medicare. My second pump is still going at 5 years and 6 months.
  6. From what I read, both Animus and MM work about equally well. Some say that the MM has fewer button punches but that may be evened out by the better screen on the Animus.
  7. MM takes a beating from some because they say that customer service is not good. I have never experienced bad customer service from MM. If I were MM and had to replace 5 pumps for one customer I might not be so friendly either. Not that all complaints are that bad. Some sound quite legitimate, but I have also heard some complaints from Animus customers and certainly from the Omnipod pumpers. They are companies; they sell machines; machines can go bad. But my view is that both Animus and MM have great safety records. There are a few horror stories but you have to decide if you will take responsibility for learning how to operate, monitor, and follow all the guidelines for proper pump use. And hope that you remain in the safe group!
  8. My best advice is to go to Animus and MM websites and download the user manuals. Then open them both on your computer and compare their features and basic use instructions. Never mind the advanced options. Neither is technically better than the other–but that is my opinion, others may differ.
  9. My other best advice is to request a hands-on demonstration of both pumps from their reps. If they will let you try their pump for a week with normal saline, go for it.
  10. Read more threads but do your own research with the companies.
    Best wishes to you.

Nice overview, Nell. I went with Animas 2020 before the Ping came out because of the waterproof issue and because the pump screen had bigger font lettering and was in color.

Magnificent exposition! I’ve spent the afternoon looking up info online. I am pretty much enamored of the PING, although I sure wish the Vibe were available here already!

It may depend on what insurance will cover, but at least I now have a clue what to hope for. :slight_smile:

This is a big issue for me, too, as my vision gets really wonky with variation in bGs.

Here is a site with fairly detailed info on 6 different pumps. This site has a nice chart comparing the pumps.

I absolutely love my Ping for various reasons. I do have a hard time reading the remote in low light situations, but can use the pump itself in those cases.

OK, I just got a call to say I qualified for a pump and that it is being shipped today.

I was so excited that I completely forgot to ask the right questions. I don’t even know what model they are sending, although I gather it’s a Medtronic.

When I first spoke to the supplier, I asked about the Animas. He indicated that I could decide later, but I was never offered any trials or asked about my preferences. CCS just requested a C-peptide test and a fasting bG (which was done yesterday), then called to say I’d been approved today.

Is this usual? Have I been snookered? Can I still change my mind?

I would call back and tell them you HAVE NOT made your decision. Do not let anyone send you a pump before you specifically tell them exactly what pump you want. Put the brakes on the train :slight_smile: And yes I believe someone is pushing you to get on a particular pump. Not sure WHO called and I think the Medtronic pump is great but this type of behavior wouldn’t suprise me from them. Tell them you want to check them out first!

Call them ASAP and tell them no one asked, and you want a Ping. Worth a shot.

Insurance should not care which pump it is besides the OmniPod. I know medicare will not cover the OmniPod and Medicaid in your state may be the same. Otherwise it shouldn’t matter.

The Medtronic reps REALLY push the button pushing thing. After about 2 weeks it was a non-issue for me. I switch back and forth between the pumps frequently and it does take a little getting used to but not a big deal. I actually read the product manual for the Vibe and their new software pretty much takes care of ALL the button pushing issues.

I bet the US dosen’t get that remote until after the Vibe or just before it. I think it will be part of a Ping 2.0 package for people who do not want CGMS.

I just called and left a message for my CCS rep to say I wanted more information before making a final choice. So, we’ll see.

One possible issue with the Ping is capacity. They’re snding the large-reservoir Medtronic, so would the Ping be adequate?

The good news: I aced my C-peptide test and DEFINITELY qualify. LOL!

how many units per day do you use with injections?

40 to 50 Levemir
as many as 60 Novolog, on a sliding scale

I agree with MossDog - call them and tell them that you have not decided which pump you want. CCS has a tendency to “push” what they want and that is not necessarily what is best for you. You are the one uing the pump, no one else. You need what fits your needs, not what fits the supply companies income statement.

That would be a problem. I know a few that just re-fill the resevoir with insulin without having to change the whole infusion set. They decided the features were worth it and that it is not too much of a hassle.

I did not know that Medicaid made the decision. I agree you should try to get the one you want. You have a tough choice to make. The clearer screen vs the need for a larger reservoir. The ping will hold about 146 to 150 units, I think, after the priming of the tubing. So, with wastage, you are looking at a little under 3 days.

Correct? Some don’t mind that and choose the ping for the screen. Depends on your priority needs. Both are great pumps. Whichever you get, you will like. I am not pushing either direction.

Using that much insulin, I would go with the larger Minimed. With Animas you would not have enough insulin for even 2 days, although you will likely use less insulin on a pump than with shots. Learning to carb count instead of a sliding scale would be a good idea so that you can use the pump correctly. Your control would likely improve greatly also, with or without a pump.

For what it’s worth, I’ve been very happy with Minimed, including with both their pump and their customer service. I use the Revel and agree with what others are saying about wanting to make sure you get one that can hold enough insulin for a few days (I use the 1.8 ml reservoirs, but I know many take more insulin than I do and require the 3 ml ones). I did consider the Animas but it was larger than the Revel and I really wanted to be able to hide my pump as much as possible under my clothes. I’m a very petite female and it can actually be pretty hard to do sometimes. I’ve gotta get creative. I will say the Animas screen looks nice, but I’ve also heard from a lot of people that it scratches easily.

One thing I’ve loved about the Revel is that it is DURABLE. Compared to people I’ve talked with who have the Animas Ping, the Revel actually seems a bit more durable.