First Week With New Pump

Eight days ago I made the switch[1] from using a Deltec Cozmo insulin pump to the Animas OneTouch Ping. Overall I’d have to say that I like the Animas. Those of you who are deciding on what type of pump to use or contemplating making a switch to a different pump from the Cozmo (since Smiths Medical has ceased manufacture of the Deltec Cozmo), you may ask: Do I like it more than the Cozmo? That’s a tough question, and one I’m going to explore in blog entries over the next few weeks as I spend more time with the Animas.

In short, though, for this week’s entry: No, at first I wasn’t taken by the Animas OneTouch Ping. Aesthetically, yes. I mean, I find the design of the Animas so much more appealing than the Cozmo; in fact, I grew to hate the look of the Cozmo. I’m not sure why, exactly, but it struck me as quite bulky; when it was coupled with its blood glucose monitor, which piggybacked the pump, I would think, “This thing looks dumpy.”

Yes, I’m somewhat shallow. So what?

I also despised the vibrate notification system on the Cozmo. No, not the fact that it notified me; that I liked. I grew weary of the way it vibrated. (Does anyone actually use the audible notification function instead of the vibration? I mean, it might be nicer, but if you spend any time around other people, it has to be completely obnoxious!) My old pump vibrate-notified too quickly, and for too long. When it reminded me to check my blood glucose two hours after a meal, eight short vibrating shocks pulsed out against my side or against my thigh depending upon whether it was attached to my belt or in my pocket. Then inside of a minute, eight more bursts, and so on until I interacted with it.

I began to anticipate these notifications, and not really in a healthy, responsible way that a person with diabetes should think about checking blood glucose. For instance, if I was dozing on a Sunday afternoon, or if I’d gone to bed and forgotten to check my blood glucose, I lay there with dread and tried to figure out which was worse: expending the energy to either reach in my pocket and turn off the upcoming notification; expending the energy to actually get up and go check my blood glucose; or continuing to lay there and wait until the pump woke and told me it was time, at which point my pulse kicked up a few beats when I felt the vibrating barrage begin.

Seriously. My blood pressure goes up a bit remembering that aspect of the Cozmo.

So, on the vibration front, I’m happy with the Ping. I know that’s one small part of it, but you’ll have to give me a few more entries (and some more time with the new pump) to better evaluate what I like and don’t like. I will leave you with one gripe about the Animas pump that I just discovered: I bolused for my breakfast, and to do this I used the meter-remote. Then I got up and went to do something in the other room. On my hip I felt the (more inviting, if that makes sense) vibration from the pump. Why? I wondered. Then I read the display: I’d walked out of range of the meter-remote. Well, I don’t like that. I don’t like that at all. It isn’t a huge burden, but I’ll have to remember to keep that meter with me for a few minutes after I bolus from now on, because the bolus was cancelled, and I had to load in another bolus to complete the darn thing.

  1. made the switch:

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Eric Lagergren: Eric Lagergren was born in 1974 but didn’t give much thought to diabetes until March 2007, when he was diagnosed with Type 1. He now gives quite a bit of thought to the condition, and to help him better understand his life as a person with diabetes, he writes about it. Eric is the senior editor for the Testing Division at the University of Michigan’s English Language Institute in Ann Arbor. (Eric Lagergren is not a medical professional.)

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