As I mentioned in an earlier post, I received an important package via FedEx on Monday: my Medtronic 670G insulin pump kit. For any non-Diabetics who may not be in the know, an insulin pump is a prescribed, electronic device that holds insulin and delivers it automatically based on your requirements and how many carbohydrates you consume.
There are a number of different brands, models and types, depending on what you’re looking for. Some are pretty straightforward and simply delivers the insulin based on simple calculation. Others have an additional feature called CGM, or Continuous Glucose Monitoring. This allows the user to have their pump track their blood sugar trends on a minute-to-minute basis and the pump makes adjustments accordingly.
There are many benefits to this new pump system. The included CGM system checks interstitial blood sugars every five minutes and makes adjustments accordingly. According to new math, that’s 288 time a day! Even with the FreeStyle Libre, I still can’t test that frequently. This allows for better overall control and time in range. The pump has the ability to automatically deliver insulin if your blood sugars are starting to rise, and can halt the delivery of insulin should they begin to drop.
The pump is said to be waterproof up to 12 feet of depth, although the manufacturers still recommend removing it before swimming. The pump uses fast-acting insulin (in my case, Humalog) and eliminates the need for long-acting insulin, acting much more like the pancreas would.
Although it’s hard to tell from the photo, the new pump is all shiny and it feels like opening up a new smart phone. There’s a backlit LED screen and a belt clip that attaches directly to the pump as opposed to simply clipping onto the body of the pump.
I have a lot of “homework” to do before I can begin reaping the benefits of this device. There are a number of manuals to read through, some online videos and learning to complete and then I have two sessions with a certified pump trainer before going on automatic mode and letting the pump take control. However, considering this pump has been out for a number of years in the U.S., it’s well known for helping you to maintain an increased amount of time “in range”. I’m looking forward to taking full advantage of this system in the weeks to come. ☯