Pump vs injections

Meredith Grace
By Meredith Grace Latest Reply 2015-01-06 00:42:09 -0600
Started 2014-10-10 19:31:37 -0500

Okay so I've had type one for about 3.5 years(I'm 15) and I am still doing a vial and syringe.. Does anyone have any thoughts on pumps vs injections? I've just been hesitant because I am afraid of the pump getting in my way too much. Advice?

12 replies

notmaiden 2015-01-06 00:42:09 -0600 Report

I just recently got on the pump. Best choice I have ever made. Researched all that was out there. I found Medtronic paradigm revel 723 with their shortest tube is great. I have heard a lot of bad things about the pod.

AppreciateIt 2014-11-17 19:19:17 -0600 Report

I was in the same boat as you. I was on shots from age 8 until I was in my 20s and was hesitant on the pump for similar reasons. However, the reasons for a pump compared to Lantus and similar long acting insulin is overwhelming once you do your research. I have to say that I use a Medtronic pump, I am not a fan of the pods, just as personal preference. The great thing with infusion sets is you can disconnect from them. For example, a surfer can take his pump off go surf out in the ocean and then come back in every hour to give himself the bolus amount he would normally have gotten while wearing it. The only thing still on you is the infusion set connector which is very inconspicuous. I can wear bikinis and connector is barely noticeable to people. I take it off when I shower.

The pods last I knew are more limited, like you can't go in a hot tub wearing it as that would overheat the insulin inside the pod.

As far as Lantus, long- acting insulin have inconsistent arcs. Meaning that its effectiveness can vary day to day and end up overlapping and missing with the shot you take the next day, causing unexpected highs or lows. Humalog is much more precise and stays active in your system a specific number of hours. The pump takes into consideration when you tell it your blood sugar and how many carbs you're about to eat, how much insulin it currently still 'active' in your system and will subtract out any overcorrection down to the .3 units you may have given yourself via shot.

Finally, say goodbye to finding a convenient place to give yourself shots and carrying around bright orange capped syringes everywhere, except for maybe one as a back up. It definitely has its challenges, but I've found I can eat what I want more easily and I would never go back.

Finally, I like to tell people I am a cyborg like 7 of 9 from Star Trek, which is always a light way to introduce them to the fact that I'm a diabetic. Cyborgs are fun and sexy! :)

Anyway, hope that helps and best wishes.

Sharkey233 2014-10-19 21:07:56 -0500 Report

Living with diabetes if a bummer at times - but you really need to understand how the pump works - you still have to give yourself a dose (via the pump) with each meal - the only difference being that you won't have as many "sticks" - I also have to dose with each meal and at bedtime. Your insulin dosages will always be changing - even after your growth stops. I personally have chosen NOT to go with a pump - one because of the cost (even with insurance it can cost up to $5000 for the pump) and I've learned to give my shots without anyone noticing. There is also the possibility of the pump malfunctioning and I've seen that happen more times than I care to mention.
Personally, I'm waiting for a pump that will automatically administer the insulin based on a continuous check of blood sugar - I know that's in the works but I have not heard when that will be on the market.
Check with your endocrinologist regarding the pros and cons of an insulin pump.

Silicone eyes
Silicone eyes 2014-10-13 17:15:08 -0500 Report

I put off getting a pump forever, I have been in a Tslim fora year now and can't imagine not having it. I have not heard of too many people that have tried one and wanted to go back to MDI. I was worried about being hooked to something 24/7, I feel lost without it now. A pump will ease your life and improve your numbers. There are so many great pumps out there to choose from. A good endo will have you wear an infusion site for a while to make sure that you dig it. Talk to your endo, look at your options, try and wear a site .

ydocpdx 2014-10-13 10:36:29 -0500 Report

I have used syringe & vial then flex pens. Now I use a pump. The pump has helped me a lot. It still takes the responsibility to check BS and enter how many carbs and whatnot but it is definitely a key to making life easier.

brazosbelle 2014-10-11 13:52:00 -0500 Report

Hi Meredith Grace! Have you ever thought of switching from syringe and vial to a KwikPen? I love them! They are so much more convenient that a syringe, and I doubt if I will ever go to a pump. (and my A1c has lowered to 6.7 this year…hopefully will keep improving in the future)

thebabylez 2014-10-11 12:56:14 -0500 Report

Switch to the pump…but get the Omni pod pump. It's tubeless and the needle is probably smaller or the same size as your syringe. Please don't get a pump with a tube. Air bubbles are the worst and when the air bubble releases you'll drop so low. Go check out the Omni pod online

Pip2 2014-10-11 11:40:50 -0500 Report

I was the same when I first had the choice of using the pump. Not going to lie it does get in the way some times, and I worried about damaging it at first, but still the best choice I ever made :)

Type1Lou 2014-10-11 10:12:54 -0500 Report

I have had diabetes for 38 years but only started pumping 3 years ago because I didn't want to be connected to something 24/7. I'm so sorry I waited so long to pump. I have been able to reduce my overall daily insulin by about 20% and increased my overall control. My last Aic was 6.6. A pump is able to better fine-tune your insulin needs. I assume you are taking both a long-acting insulin for basal insulin and a fast-acting insulin for meals. Once you inject a long-acting insulin it is there and you can't turn it off. A pump uses only a fast acting insulin but gives you very tiny amounts throughout the day to meet your basal needs. I love being able to reduce my basal level or even turn it off completely to accommodate exercise so I don't get a Low BG reaction. Conversely, if I'm sick, I can increase my basal level to counteract the BG increases caused by the infection. Pumping also enables you to administer doses in much smaller, more accurate increments (up to 1/100th of a unit. I would encourage anyone who is serious about managing their diabetes to try pumping. There is an adjustment period when you begin because the initial settings will need to be tweaked for your metabolism. It does demand determination and effort to make it work but the result, IMO are well worth it.

jayabee52 2014-10-11 01:24:33 -0500 Report

Howdy Meredith

Pumps are much talked about here on DC.

I was on one of those discussions the other day and Type 1 Lou referred to an article in Jan issue of Diabetes Forecast which you may find here ~ http://www.diabetesforecast.org/2014/Jan/insu...

Lou then shared with us this link from the above article here ~

This might even be more valuable to you as it tells of the majority of the pump offerings out there and their features. And it is printable in the pdf format

Most folks who get on a pump say "Why didn't I do this earlier?".

I pray this is helpful to you