Friday Five*: Insulin Pump Shopping

I thought this would be more exciting, but it really isn’t. I haven’t really been swayed by any of the brands out there 100%, but – after my Paradigm decided not to recognize the battery change yesterday morning, I’m thinking I need to make a decision fairly quickly. (And call for ANOTHER replacement pump… #4 in the last year.)

1) I’ve decided against upgrading to an OmniPod. While the wireless capability is pretty awesome and the customer service is spot on, the programming of the pump is not much different than my Paradigm. My docs would love for me to be able to explore a .25 unit change in my basals and the Pods can only administer a .5 unit increment, with no plans to make that an option. Their lowest carb count ratio is 1:1, which is pretty typical, but apparently other pumps can get down to .5:1, which will be super handy during that 3rd Trimester, when it should occur.

2) I really like T:Slims interface and the sleekness of it, however, their customer service has left a slightly sour taste in my mouth – and I haven’t even purchased the pump yet. I sent in my patient paper work TWICE… and still had to call someone to figure out what the heck was going on. I understand it’s the end of the year and people are probably trying to spend their deductibles. But – a little bit of “hey – thanks for your interest” would be nice. Especially if I’m going to drop $50/month on supplies.

3) I sent in my paper work to Dexcom for a G4 Platinum. I figure if I have to buy a brand new transmitter outright with the new Medtronic 530G, I might as well just get what I want. Anything I get at this point, though, will hopefully be way more accurate and less finicky than what I have now. (Though – I had to order more sensors yesterday because, well February is 2.5 months out…) I know my docs keep telling me that it’s not really the number I should be concerned with, but the direction, it’s hard justifying waking up in the 190s and stable when your CGM says you’ve been in the 130s and stable. (Or that you’ve already hit 47 when your CGM says you’re 110… that sort of thing.)

4) A reason to stick with Medtronic? Carelink. My docs know how to use it. I can just upload and send a secure message for them to evaluate – done. I believe all other pumps have SOME sort of reporting software, but I don’t know what it entails, (how much it costs), and if my docs can access it. My CDE has suddenly stopped being able to accept emails from me and her suggestions are becoming more “canned.” I figure sending her attachments is a bad idea now. It’s a bit disappointing. Anyway – if you are not using Carelink, how do you get your Dexcom or Pump or Meter results to your doctor for evaluation?

5) I still have to take a look at the Animas Ping. But – you know… the holidays and stuff.

5.5) The Asante Snap isn’t available in my area, apparently. (WTF!?)


On the bright side, I’ve discovered that my health insurance doesn’t have a contract solely with Medtronic, so I am free to shop around to the larger companies. But since my Insurance is “local” and “special,” the Pump companies have a few work-arounds that need to be put in place, thus probably taking longer for approvals and such. But – it’s a 20% co-pay regardless where I go. So – that’s good news. (In the grand scheme of things.)

Have a good weekend.


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