Why Omnipod?

podFor the past several years, I’ve been rather, um, vocal about my dislike for Omnipod. Frankly, I just didn’t get it. I know a lot of Omnipodders are anti-tubing, but I was anti “wearing the entire pump on your body.” I just didn’t see how that could be comfortable. Couldn’t you see the lumpy pump through all your clothing? I just wasn’t convinced. Pump tubing moves with you and you can get lengths long enough so that it doesn’t really get in your way when doing things like going to the bathroom. I never had an issue with sleeping with the pump. I’m a back/side sleeper so clipping it to the front of my PJ bottoms kept it firmly planted and out of the way. And sex? Well, I take it all off.

Like I said, I just didn’t get it.

Then I went off the pump, and I remembered how nice it was to be unencumbered by diabetes technology. As superficial as it might be, it felt freeing. I felt as close to non-diabetic as I could get. But the facts laid themselves out and it just wasn’t working anymore, and I knew that I needed to get back onto a pump or my health would start suffering my vanity.

As I described yesterday, most of the pumps have their pros and their cons. The Omnipod’s cons still exist for me. I don’t like that you can’t move it around. I don’t like that you have to change it every 3 days. I don’t like that you can’t bolus directly from it (which frankly seems like a safety hazard if you ask me).

So why did I choose the Omnipod? Well, as much as I believe that “tubing doesn’t bother me,” it turns out that tubing was the reason. Sort of. You see, if you have a tubed pump, that means that the pump has to be attached in two places. On one end of the tubing, you have to pick a spot for the set to go. Stomach. Arms. Legs. Whatever floats your boat (and absorption). But on the other end of the tubing is the actual pump. And that needs to go somewhere too. Pants pocket. Bra. Spanx. The only one I never tried was the waistband because that just looked uncomfortable.

The tubing wasn’t my issue. It was finding a place to attach my pump that convinced me to try the Omnipod, which only leaves you with the one side of the attachment equation. For years, I had given up wearing dresses. No can do, I thought. I have a pump. Skirts? Had to have pockets. Pants and shorts too. I planned my entire wardrobe around the pump. Then I started exploring dresses a little bit more, and found that many women wear the pump in their bra.

Now, if you met me or, heck, see a photo of me, you can probably tell that I’m not a tiny person. I have some room in there. But it turns out that I still don’t like it because hello! Have you ever put a hard plastic box between your boobs? It is not comfortable! I was convinced people could also see it, and it drove me nuts that the wire would start popping out of my top or that people would be staring at my cleavage trying to figure out if I had a third boob.

Later I discovered Spanx. Two-fold in purpose, it not only flattened me out a bit and eased the chub-rub, but it also gave me a place to stash the pump. I clipped it to the Spanx, with the pump between the Spanx and my skin, and the elastic held it all together quite well. Except it was also uncomfortable. And kind of sweaty. After a couple of summers wearing Spanx in NYC’s heat and humidity, I was starting to question the genius of this plan.

When I started looking at pumps, I initially thought that having a remote would be the kind of upgrade I could get behind. The Animas Ping, with its rave DOC reviews, was my initial  plan.

About a month ago, I tried out a demo of the Omnipod (it’s free, btw). I received their newest model, which is smaller and thinner than the old beasts that initially turned me off. It was a little strange wearing something on my skin, but no stranger than having something pressed against my thigh or boob. I wore it on my lower back, and only felt it when driving my car, as it pressed against the seat.

It was during that demo that I realized that it wasn’t just the remote I wanted. It was the feeling of not being attached to anything. Now, like I said, I know that an Omnipod is still being attached to something. But it’s a one-sided attachment. All I need is to find where on my skin I want it. I don’t need to find a place in my clothing for it. That’s what sold me on the Omnipod.

 

 

What insulin pump do you use? What “sold” you on it?

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9 Responses to Why Omnipod?

  1. Stacey D. says:

    That’s exactly why I switched to the pod as well – didn’t mind the tubing at all. It was the pump part that started to drive me crazy. Wait until you can get dressed without having to hold onto the pump or quickly put something on that you can clip it to. Or where a nightgown or dress without having to worry about finding a spot for it. It’s wonderful! Is it a bit big? Sure. Even the new pods still stick out a bit. But that doesn’t bother me one bit. Congrats on your decision and good luck with it!

  2. What you mentioned is the main thing that sold me on the OmniPod, freedom of dress. I also liked that it didn’t have to see the insertion needle, which now probably wouldn’t bother me as much. My endo told me that OmniPod wastes less insulin as well.

    I do wish there were more tubeless pump options on the market, because since I know I want a patch-style pump I only have one choice. I haven’t heard of a single existing OmniPod user getting the new system yet.

  3. Melissa Lee says:

    I think that there are a lot of traditional pump users who don’t see the “big deal” about a patch pump and think it’s just for people eeked out by tubing. Or at least I felt that way. I kept asking Insulet to sell me on the features besides “but there’s no tube!” They won me over, and though there are occasional issues I’ve struggled with over the last four years, I am incredibly happy as a podder.

  4. Reva says:

    So I’m a tuber and really always wondered why uou would want an omnipod so I thank you for writing this post because I definitely do see the advantages! It is a hassle to figure out where to put my pump but I was always worried about a pod showing through my clothes. After starting to use the Dexcom G4 CGM and having something stick out a little further, I’m realizing its really not that big of a deal. I might look into demoing the omnipod now

    • Being on Dexcom really helped show me that I could live with a lump on my skin. Then I tried the demo pod and saw how much smaller it was (or at least in my mind) to the old one. It’s not perfect, but even a regular pump can cause lumps and bumps! Nothing’s perfect.

  5. Katie says:

    After trying a traditional pump in 2002 I stopped because I could not stand the tubing. I’ve been waiting for years for OmniPod’s new, smaller pod and the second I could order it (Feb. 2013) I jumped on it and am IN LOVE.

  6. Pingback: On Choosing Diabetes Technology | The Blood Sugar Whisperer

  7. Michelle Robinson says:

    I may be the last person in the Omnipod world to hear this news so I apologize if this is already known but there was a recall back in February on the freestyle checker strips for use in Omnipod. If your strips expire before August 2015 then they are being recalled for giving false readings on numbers. This astounds me because I have been a customer forever (back when the pods were bigger and kinda uglier) and I wasn’t even notified by the Omnipod company about this recall. My mom found out about it web surfing because my numbers have been so out of control that I now have been having problems with diabetic neuropathy. I can’t believe these companies. This is my life. It’s not some freaking disease that I made poor decisions and got, this stuff was in my DNA. And these a$$hats have the audacity to not even send a memo?!?!?! I have long been a proponent of Omnipod because of the lack of tubing and auto insertion but I can’t stand behind them anymore. This is heartless. I had to stop working because things got so bad. My doctor was confounded by my numbers and all I could think was this is all my fault. That I wasn’t good enough and because of my lack of control that I was shortening my life day by day. And then to find out, nope- it was thanks to horrifying ignorant jerks that couldn’t bother to send out the recall. F@&k Omnipod. I hope the company goes bankrupt.

  8. Pingback: Memory Lane | The Blood Sugar Whisperer

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