Pump Death: The Injection Edition

Today has been appalling. My diabetes has been weird this week. I always felt I was chasing it. It felt like my insulin never brought me down quite as much as it should, you know? Well today at slimming class I found out why <s>and now putting on that pound makes so much more sense as I’ve been pouring insulin down my throat</s>. I take my pump off to get weighed cause she’s a heavy bugger and because it raises awareness because people wonder what I’m doing. Little things in life you know? Well, I had put my second pair of socks and boots back on when I happened to notice my pump.

And the inch long crack down the middle of it. Right down the side of where the battery is kept has cracked open. I can get my nails down it easily. Spiderweb cracks are all over the side where the insulin is kept and the back in general looks…melted. I fell at the start of the week and banged my chest. I think I’ve started the crack and damaged the battery and it has slowly leaked? The pump itself claims it is working fine but evidence suggests not.

I’m really lucky I didn’t get a serious chemical burn from the battery acid o.o

No wonder my blood sugar has remained stubbornly in the high teens for 3 days. So I left mum in class and went into the hall’s kitchen area to phone animas, the pump maker. He took all my details of the damage, contacts and how I was being effected ie, high bloods, ketones and symptoms they log as ‘dehydration’ but the diabetics just say ‘thirsty’. He has stated that the pump will be replaced.

However, he cannot do that tonight. That needs to be signed off by the 9-5 team tomorrow. They can only fix things over the phone, not replace them. And he has no idea when my replacement would consequently arrive. So that is stressful. In the interim I am back on injections. Well, insulin pens. Stab and insulin goes in devices. I hate it. Taking an injection with a pen after 2 years just felt utterly bizarre. More than that though, I do not have the pump because it was a lifestyle change or because the stats like it as many diabetics do in other countries based on insurance. I have one because injections did not work.

Failure of the injections meant I could not work for 3 years. I could barely leave my damn house at times. Now I’m relying on them again? It is a horrible feeling. It shows why diabetics on pumps still get prescribed their ‘long acting’ insulin that can last between 12 and 24 hours despite using 5 hour insulins in the pump. The pump is my organ but is also a machine and machines break. You have to do a ridiculous calculation to convert pump insulin amounts to injection ones. It really is very complicated when the majority of people needing to figure that number out are doing it because their machine broke. But I managed it. Given my already terrible maths skills that is impressive but I had more maths minded people confirm it for me.

Of course that brought another dilemma. The calculation is based on a person taking one dose of a 24 hour long background insulin. Many people these days don’t do that. Even the ’24’ hour ones are often taken in split doses and many others just take insulins that have shorter life spans. Like mine. So where was that sum? Oh, no where. I just had to agonize over it and debate the matter online with my twitter diabetic buddies. After reassurances I cut them around 60/40% which is close to what I took before but the doses are far higher. I will stay up as long as possible to monitor first few hours of having a proper basal insulin in my system again and then check my level every 2 hours during the night (flkerwjgblwejrgljwegb).

Needless to say I’ve asked for university extensions because I won’t get anything done other than maybe emptying the dishwasher until I’m back on a pump. Next few days are going to be brutal and I’m not being pessimistic. As I said, there is a reason I am on a pump.

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