In order to choose the insulin pump that fits best to your needs, you need to know your therapy requirements and which insulin pump covers this best. The right pump for everyone doesn't exist, instead it's the right pump for the right person. The choice will always be based on your lifestyle and your personal preferences.
An insulin pump delivers a continuous supply of insulin and therefore closely mimics the body's natural delivery. How much is needed per hour varies from person to person and is adjustable. The purpose of an insulin pump is to help better manage your blood glucose levels.
Regular insulin pumps
A tubed insulin pump is an insulin pump that is connected to the body through an infusion set (a tube). This infusion set needs to be replaced every 2 to 3 days. The insulin is stored in cartridges that are inserted into the pump. For most models, users need to fill the cartridges themselves. The mylife YpsoPump offers ready-to-use pre-filled insulin cartridges or you can fill your preferred insulin into the pump cartridge yourself.
Tubed insulin pumps come in various sizes. The same applies to the length of the tubes and cannulas (needles made from either steel or flexible plastic) of the infusion sets. After all, it is important that you can wear the pump comfortably.
A patch pump is an insulin pump that attaches directly to the skin — for example, on the abdomen, arm or buttock. It delivers insulin across a cannula at the back of the pump. The pump has to be replaced regularly (like an infusion set), which can make it unsuitable for people who require a high amount of insulin (e.g. more than 200 units every three days).
As with tubed pumps, you have to set the amount of basal insulin to be delivered as a basal profile on a patch pump. A patch pump cannot be disconnected while in use. Therefore, there is no need for an infusion set, but this advantage comes with the downside that the pump itself needs to be worn on the skin 24/7. Patch pumps are operated by remote control, which you should carry with you at all times.
How do I choose an insulin pump?
How do I know what is right for me? Try considering the following:
- Would I prefer a tubed pump or a patch pump?
- How important is the size and weight of the insulin pump? Remember that you will wear the pump 24 hours a day.
- Would you prefer ready to use, pre-filled insulin cartridges or could you accept filling the cartridges with insulin yourself?
- How important is it to you that the pump is easy to use?
- To what extent is the bolus calculator suitable for entering a blood glucose value measured with a Flash Glucose Monitoring (FGM) sensor, Continuous Glucose Monitoring (CGM) sensor or blood glucose meter?
- Would you like to have the bolus calculator with your therapy data as an app on your phone?
- Would you like to be able to administer a bolus via an app on your phone, without having to pick up your pump?
- How important is it that the pump can be paired with a glucose sensor?
Ordering an insulin pump
If you think you know what you want, then why don't you have a chat with your healthcare professional. They'll be able to talk to you in more detail, as well as order the pump and get it set up for you.
Process of choosing and ordering the insulin pump (depending on country and healthcare system):
- Does the pump you want fit your needs?
- Discuss the choice with your healthcare professional. They'll be able to asses whether you meet the necessary criteria for funding.
- Confirm the choice.
- Your healthcare professional will place an order.
- Your new pump will be delivered.
- You'll do a full pump start, teaching you everything you need to know about your pump.
- You'll be set up to receive a regular delivery of consumables.
1 mylife Loop Program: The innovation described is currently in development. Features and performances of future technologies may vary. Access to future technologies is contingent upon regulatory approval.