Reasons for Taking an Insulin Pump Vacation
One of the ideas I'd been mulling over in the weeks leading up to my endocrinologist appointment was taking a pump vacation. I'd experienced several frustrating pump site malfunctions (the cannula kept kinking during insertion) that left me with stubbornly high blood sugars for hours. It was maddening to have poor blood sugar control because of my insulin delivery system. Also, after nearly five years of pumping, I just wanted the freedom of life without a little medical device tethered to me.
Upon discussion with my doctor, I made the comment "I know that the pump is best..." to which he replied, "For some people, but it's not inherently better." He knows that I eat a fairly disciplined diet and still test my blood sugar 10-12 times a day, so he agreed that switching to injections would be fine for me. He prescribed Humalog and Lantus pens, which I'd never used before. It was kind of exciting to open the boxes of pens and learn how to use a new device!
The first couple days were a little tricky. I was used to injections lowering my blood sugar very quickly, so I underbolused for a few meals early on. Also, I had to learn the hard way that I didn't need to correct as aggressively as I would with my pump. I started with a nightly Lantus dose equal to my pump's basal rate, 10 units per day. However, I noticed that my blood sugar would rise between meals, so I increased it to 11 units, and settled in at 12 units after a few days. Seems to be just what I need now.
Tomorrow marks two weeks of being pump free and I'm loving it! It's such a luxury to wear a dress and not deal with the pump holster on my leg. I love going on walks with my family and not having to worry about wearing exercise clothes with pockets. It's just nice to play with my kids without fear of accidently pulling out my pump site.
I'm compiling a list of ways my diabetes control has improved since switching back to injections. I'm going to take a few more days to test my theories and will report back soon!