FUDiabetes

On Omnipodding

I’m 49 years Type 1 and have been on a pump since 2006- I’m on my third Medtronic Minimed and am giving serious thought to getting an OmniPod after a demo from a diabetes educator.

I tire of the number of times I have caught my tube on a branch, door handle, my own moving hand and ripped the thing out.

There’s lots of great responses here to other new Pod People, but just looking for anything that could change my mind. The rep is going to get me in for the free PDM program that ends in December, so the time seems right. I like the idea of using multiple sutes, I’ve been All Stomach for 13 years, so my arms, thighs, etc are pretty fresh!

I’m kind of a minimalist and don’t like to focus beyond what’s necessary on the routines, so even was reluctant to make the pump move (which has been great, A1C a year ago was 6.5, last was 7.2).

Questions then:

  • How obtrusive or not is the thing? It’s hard to guess.
  • Does it stick super string? I’m pretty active (and also bump into things often).
  • I understand it can last 3 days, but from what I have seen the reservoir is smaller than my Minimed (300ml). I’m not crazy about switching more frequently (never mind the $ factor, my supplies are covered at 80%, but I have to outlay it and wait long for repayment)

I’m pretty sure I am ready to try a new device, just seeking any other things to look out for or that will help in the changeover.

Thanks

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Do you use the full 300 ml every 3 days or a lessor amount? That certainly could be an issue that might tip you towards a different pump. If you are looking for another solution to the tube catching on stuff problem, my son uses the Tslim and a pump band made out of thin fabric, so the pump is always under his clothes but is really easy to fish out when necessary and he has not pulled a site out in quite a while. This is not to be confused with all the dexcom sites that have been ripped off him by his well meaning but overly aggressive high school classmates.

I believe it is a hard stop at 3 days (maybe a few hours grace), even when there is still insulin left.

Yes, it is more expensive and has to be changed every 3 days no matter, what which can be annoying. With a tubed pump I could get almost a week out of a reservoir and just change the site every 3 days, which was more economical and convenient.

Other things I can think of are you have to carry more supplies with you, since if a pod fails you have to have a new pod ready and insulin to fill it with. I would often just keep a syringe with me with a tubed pump, but often nothing. While pod failures are rare, they do happen, whereas a tubed pump failing is extremely rare. I also hated the PDM compared to my old Minimed pump since it was bigger and didn’t fit into my pocket as well, and there was no way to bolus by just pushing one button (easy bolus/audio bolus), though the Omnipod PDM has changed and I don’t think any pump lets you do this anymore. Lastly I hated that it had to be changed every 3 days + 8 hours and would start beeping during that 8 hour window. Lastly, pod change highs were really annoying and I never experienced highs after a site change on a tubed pump unless the site was bad. I know for many people it’s just personal preference and no tube outweighs these problems, so not saying any of this is a reason not to get it, just things to consider.

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I go about 3.5 days on my Medtronic, I’m at about 95 units total used per day.

So you would only get two days out of a pod using U100. So that does have to be factored in. I don’t think the wear ability will be an issue, since we have so many forum members happily using Omnipods and putting it in places that I wouldn’t think would be podding real estate.

Tandem has the Quick Bolus button.

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I have been on omnipod for around 6 months, have never knocked one off, have hit it plenty and snagged on shirt when removing. As far as the amount of insulin it holds you can get script for u-200 insulin and double the amount on board.
I was on minimed for years before switching, if anything I can advise is get dexcom g-6 for gcm, I am currently on libre, love not having alarms but miss warnings I am rising or droping. My AIC has gone from 5.2 to 6.2.

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It’s a little, but not very … obtrusive - I wear it on my arms and legs; I used to use it on my belly. When I’m in short sleeves and someone sees it, because of the commercials for Neulasta, they think that is why I’m wearing it. Neulasta is a drug administred using the same pod we use for insulin, but for cancer patients.

It stays on very well, for me, with or without skin prep, which I recently found out. I had always added a brush on of skin prep, but didn’t have it with me when I had pod failure and the pod lasted the entire three days without using it. I tried it again and again and have had the same results - no skin prep necessary - I have to pry the pod off, it sticks so well! I shower with it on, and no skin prep, but I haven’t gone swimming yet!

Yesterday I did turn a corner too closely and pulled the entire pod off of the adhesive back - which stuck to my skin! I haven’t done that in years, but I was in a hurry and … the rest is history!

It has to be changed every 72 + 8 hours. At the 80 hour mark, the pod will alarm that the insulin delivery has stopped and continue alarming until you start the process to start a new pod. After you start the process, if you don’t complete the process it will continue to alarm about every 10-15 minutes, reminding you that you don’t have any insulin being delivered. I carry an extra pod and vial of insulin with me - pod failures happen and it’s best to be prepared.

I wish the pod came with a different canula (metals vs plastics) and came in different lengths/angles, but it doesn’t. I’ve developed a lot of scar tissue on my belly and haven’t used the pod there in over a year. Rotating between my legs and arms, so far, knock-on-wood, has worked well - but, I also only use the pod now for basal insulin delivery. I use MDI for bolus doses for food and corrections, which is why I think my arms and legs have survived as long as they have.

I love OmniPod and no tubing, but there are a few things I wish were different. That can be said for just about anything though you’ve used for several years, like I’ve used the OmniPod for six plus years

The best of luck to you! Trying it first is a great idea.

I find the adhesive is pretty strong. It’s hard to accidentally yank off on my skin, and it holds up to sweaty, humid conditions and vigorous activity. I do not use any additional adhesives. Sometimes I get a corner of the adhesive folded under when I’m applying the pod, and then I just use surgical tape to hold that corner down. At the same time, the adhesive is not so strong that the pod is difficult or uncomfortable to remove after its three days.

I think I’ve had two pods yanked off in close to three years of pod use – once by clothing and the other time it was on my arm and got swiped by a closing streetcar door.

I don’t consider it obtrusive, but I can see how some people would think that. I’m past the age where I can wear skintight clothes. (Well, I can wear them. It’s just that nobody wants to see it.) A pod is about the size of a Girl Guide cookie and weighs as much as two cookies (27 g, or 1 oz.) – i.e., a lot less obtrusive than a tubed pump that is on your belt or in a pocket. If you think having a Girl Guide cookie taped to you would interfere with the silhouette, then no, the pod is not for you.

IMG_3681

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A hundred things I would do with a cookie, but that is one that will never happen.

Now I gotta go find some cookies.
:yum:
Thanks Beach!

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Thanks for all the advice here. I decided to order the Omnipod since I was able to get it for free under their current promotion, and I was able to keep the old Medtronic Minimed as backup.

I just met this morning with a nurse trainer who traveled to meet me at a Starbucks and orient me to the settings. I am now podding:

It’s quite more sophisticated than my old pump, and I am also adjusting from many years of thinking in mg/DL to mmol I’m hoping that it may lower my daily usage so those 200 units go longer, but more, to get better numbers and maybe less rollercoaster highs and lows.

I guess I have to next consider a CGM… one device at a time. Thanks again.

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Feel free to ask away for any questions you may have! Lots of Podders here. Although we’re looping right now (Omniloop), we used the PDM for 3 years or longer before that and it’s still in the closet and I still remember most of the functionality of it.

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Great you got it to try!!
:+1:

As @ClaudnDaye said, feel free to ask anything you want about it. There is legitimately more pod knowledge at FUD than at any endo’s office and probably more than you’d get with a trainer (unless maybe if they are also a user).

It ain’t bragging if it’s true. :wink:

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I was pretty excited. But I am sitting here workin on my laptop and the darn thing just fell off. The adhesive is not sticky at all. Not a great first impression.

It helps to clean the site with an alcohol swab first. I generally put them on after a shower.

After you stick it on, rub the adhesive a few times to make sure it’s attached well.

And Insulet will replace pods that fall off before 3 days. Just call them and tell them what happened, and they’ll swap it for you.

On occasion, I’ve lost them because I hit them on something, or because I was abusing it. But I usually get 3 days with no problem.

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Did you put it on top of hair? That may do it if so. Ours are very sticky on our sons’ skin and we’ve never had one “fall off” on it’s own, ever…and we’ve been podders for 4 years or more now. It may be difference in skin that’s accounting for it. But some folks use Skin-tac (we used to use it until we decided we didn’t need it.) Instead, now, we only use a small sliver of opsite flexfix at the front just in case it’s bumped - to give a bit more stability and keep that cannula under the skin.

As @Eric pointed out, make sure you clean the area really well with alcohol wipes and make sure you don’t place one over a surface where you used a substance such as Unisolve because the area will not hold anything until that area loses the unisolve residue.

Every POD we put on our son we make sure we “press down” pretty sternly on the top of the POD to ensure it’s sticking IN THE CENTER. Then we press along the edges so that it’s stuck really well all around. This works great for us.

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Thanks. This one was put on my arm in the company of a nurse educator who trained me on device. Nothing was on my skin. She mentioned that a lot of people use alcohol wipes but was not strictly necessary (she is a podder and says she does not do this). We pressed on the pod and the adhesive around.

Yes I have hair, can’t avoid that. I have to shave skin now? But there’s hardly any adhesive on it, no stickiness at all. Have contacted my rep and will give another one a try.

In my mind, the purpose of the alcohol wipes isn’t only to assist in prepping the skin for the adhesion, but it’s also to get rid of any bacteria that may make it into your bloodstream and make you sick. We always clean before and after any procedure where the skin is going to be penetrated just to keep Liam healthy…and it helps in ensuring it remains firm to the skin as a second benefit. But I believe hair should and would impact adhesion.

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But the bottom line is - all I can give you is our experience. 4 years+ and not a single POD has ever fallen off by itself…plenty have come off, but always because Liam bumped, banged, or all the other things 2 - 5 year olds do so make it come off, but there was always a root cause for it. So, hopefully the next POD sticks better - if not, you may need to do some root-cause-analysis to determine why it’s not working for you.

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