Trying A New Site Location For Infusion Sets
Let’s say your doctor recently discussed with you trying an infusion set in a new place for the very first time. While discussing, your doctor might recommend testing your blood glucose more frequently to make sure whether or not the insulin absorption is the same for your new infusion set site location compared to your previous site location.
Based on what we hear from users wearing MiniMed™ insulin pumps, most of them have their “favorite” insertion sites – that means they are using only a few sites and one tubing length. Most of them are practicing the habit of rotating and alternating infusion sets.
So for example, if you wear today the infusion set on the right side of your belly but in two days you had planned to move it to the left side or down to your thigh.
But had you ever used the back of your arm, which is also an approved location? You may have questions, like, “How would it feel?” or “What to do with the tubing?”
A MiniMed™ pump user shared his experience with us:
‘So when my doctor asked me to use the upper back of my arm (the tricep area) the first time, it made me a little nervous. But after all these years, my site rotations are much more important and it was time to find new areas of skin, so I went home to try it with my MiniMed™ Mio™ infusion set. I stood in front of the mirror, twisted around to see back of my arm in the mirror and placed the serter on my skin. I then took a deep breath and whispered a word of encouragement to myself before I inserted it – and I have to say, that wasn’t so bad.’
NOTE: This is one of the site locations where it actually might be a good idea to get help depending on your flexibility and dexterity.
A lot of MiniMed™ pump users have the same experience and it will get easier when you continue with what works best for you.
From other pump users we got more feedback about trying the back of the arm as a new insertion site:
- The insertion feels different and is almost as comfortable as when I insert on my stomach but I think in time I will get used to it.
- One time, the insertion was noticeably uncomfortable, so I pulled out the infusion set and tried another one because I thought I may have hit some muscle or inserted it incorrectly, so that’s something that I am now more aware of.
- Since I’m right-handed, I find that it’s much easier when I wear it on my left arm.
- It is a little more awkward to disconnect the site, so that’s something I’ve been practicing.
- The tubing length really matters in this case, since the tubing now has to reach from my arm, around my shoulder, and down to my pocket where I typically clip my pump. I own boxes of infusion sets with different tubing lengths so I make sure to use the longest option (for my set it’s 80 cm) when I choose the back of my arm as a site.
- Since the set isn’t in my line of sight it can be harder to tell if the cannula gets bent with an insertion, the edges of the adhesive are peeling up, or if there happens to be blood at the site, so I know it’s important to take glances in a mirror to make sure everything looks okay. But I think my favorite part about this new location outweighs this as it gives the rest of my body some time to heal. I also don’t mind that my pink infusion set now peeks out of my short sleeves!
No matter how long it’s been since you were first trained on a pump, it’s important to know that there are options.
If an infusion set that has worked for you in the past may not be working for you now, talk with your doctor about trying a different cannula length or type of infusion set. If the tubing you use today doesn’t work in a specific time of your life with a sports uniform or special occasion dress because it’s too short or long, then reach out to where you order your supplies (Medtronic or your Distributor) about trying a box of another length in your next shipment.
For more information about Medtronic infusion sets and how to use them, refer to the Instructions for Use.
Visit our website
to learn more about infusion set site location.
IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION
- Medtronic insulin infusion pumps, continuous glucose monitoring systems and associated components are limited to sale by or on order of a physician and should only be used under the direction of a healthcare professional familiar with the risk associated with the use of these systems.
- Successful operation of the insulin infusion pumps and/or continuous glucose monitoring systems requires adequate vision and hearing to recognize alerts and alarms.
Medtronic Insulin Infusion Pumps
- Insulin pump therapy is not recommended for individuals who are unable or unwilling to perform a minimum of four blood glucose tests per day.
- Insulin pumps use rapid-acting insulin. If your insulin delivery is interrupted for any reason, you must be prepared to replace the missed insulin immediately.
For detailed information regarding the instructions for use, indications, contraindications, warnings, precautions, and potential adverse events, see the device manual. For further information, contact your health care provider and/or consult the Medtronic Website at http://www.medtronic-diabetes-mena.com The medical information in this document is provided as an information resource only, and is not to be used or relied on for any diagnostic or treatment purposes. This information does not create any patient-physician relationship, and should not be used as a substitute for professional diagnosis and treatment. Please consult your health care provider before making any health care decisions or for guidance about a specific medical condition. Medtronic expressly disclaims responsibility, and shall have no liability, for any damages, loss, injury, or liability whatsoever suffered as a result of your reliance on the information contained in this document / site.
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