By: Barbara Bradley
Choosing the right insulin pump and infusion set can be a daunting task for prospective users, and the number of options available may be overwhelming.
Insulin pumps and supplies are prescription items usually billed to your health insurance as “durable medical equipment.” Pump manufacturers have specialists who will work with your insurance company and help establish payment plans for co-pays, if necessary.
Any questions you have about insulin pumps and infusion sets can be answered by an endocrinologist or certified diabetes educator. And you can always ask the manufacturer’s customer service representatives, read the sales literature or review your options with a pump trainer or diabetes educator.
You might also attend an insulin pump support group in your area. Talk with pump users. If you have Internet access, locate an online support group.
Some Important Notes
Syringes for pumps are not interchangeable. You must use the proper syringes designed for your specific pump during the four-year warranty period. Medtronic Diabetes and Dana Diabecare pumps have proprietary infusion sets. You cannot use another manufacturer’s infusion set with the Paradigm pumps.
Before choosing your pump, be sure to look at several different ones and compare their features. Choose the pump and infusion set that best meet your needs. When you decide to start insulin pump therapy, be prepared to attend pre- and post-pump intensive education and training sessions.
When pumping insulin, expect to do more frequent blood glucose monitoring. Learn and practice safe techniques for using your pump and safe blood glucose management. Learn to anticipate and prevent potential problems and to troubleshoot any problems that arise.
Once you have done the preparation, chosen the right pump and set and learned how to use them properly, you will be on your way to better blood glucose control and better health.