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Stainless steel infusion sets are more FOREIGN then a teflon one? I beg to differ


Anna's Blog
By: FatCatAnna

The Roller Coaster Ride of Diabetes! Whoo! Whoo!

I am a Type 1 diabetic diagnosed back in the early 60's as a child.  I am living in Montreal, Canada and enjoy scribbling about diabetes from time to time. I’ve had my ups / downs just like any person would experience with going through life - diabetic or not.  My motto in life?  Diabetes does not control me – I control it!! 

You can find more posts/discussions at my Facebook page called "The Roller Coaster Ride of Diabetes" and also on Twitter under the name of FatCatAnna.  Feel free to follow me at both places or send me a private message!


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Surviving the Holocaust with Type 1 diabetes - Mar 27
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Midnight Three and Six and artificial pancreas technology - Jan 27
I came across a story called Midnight Three and Six on The New York Times website today.  I am utterly floored by the short documentary that accompanies the article. ...
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Posted: Jan 26, 2012 13:55
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  • Stainless steel infusion sets are more FOREIGN then a teflon one? I beg to differ
    As I "patiently" await my vacation loaner pump - that was supposed to be delivered today (and hopefully not on my doorstep despite parcel saying "signature required" and left to anyone going by my house to pilfer).   Instead, Canada Post delivered the first piece of mail I've ever received from Animas Canada promoting their products - along with stories about Canadian pumpers (and even a cute little calendar - hmm - should I submit my mug shot for 2013 I wonder ?).  I've never gotten anything like this before from Animas Canada, except for emails containing the invoice for my pump supplies I purchase from time to time.  Obviously, they are trying to get more diabetics out there to join up.  Now, they don't have to sell me on how great an insulin pump is - despite its $7,000 cost along with monthly $300 supply costs - I'm sold on pumping - though how long I can afford it once I'm retired is another story.

    One article that got me abit confused in the Winter 2011 issue of their Performance magazine - since I'm self taught on using the insulin pump showed an article by Allie (Webb) Roberts, RN BScN CDE, the Clinical Manager at Animas Canada.  She wrote an informative article about choosing the right infusion set.  There wasn't really anything new to me in what I read - except for the write up about the Contact Detach that I use, and the following is a quote from her article.

    "Contact detach is a stainless steel needle that is inserted at a straight 90 degree angle.  This is a perfect choice for those with Teflon sensitivities or allergies.

    It has to be changed every 1-2 days as it is seen as more foreign to the body than Teflon."

    What got me abit confused was her statement saying that the stainless steel needle was more foreign to the body than the 13mm/17mm Teflon cannula's in their other infusion sets they sell.  I had issues with those - due to teflon allergy - where after just 1 day or less - intense itching - redness both on top of skin surface and itchiness under the skin where the infusion set sat (I wanted to rip it out - but at the cost of the infusion set - I left it in - scratch, scratch).  The thickness of the teflon cannula as well to my eye is far thicker then the stainless steel 6mm/8mm 29 gauge needle that is inserted into me.  So, why say should the stainless steel be more foreign if for myself - it doesn't cause any discomfort - even after 3 days of wearing it?

    I know that Kelly Booth has written a few blogs lately with her problems with her Animas Ping (she's told me to stay with the Animas 2020 - too many probs she's heard from other users of this model).  She has what I would consider more severe allergic reactions then I do (is that sometimes do to the environment a person lives in I wonder?).  The Contact detach infusion set to her is very painful to insert, and causes problems to the skin in less then a day.  Her goal with going back onto her Animas pump was to get her blood sugars in control due to some problems with her basal insulin - but alas with infusion site problems - she's stopped using her pump again and back to MDI (multiple dosage injections).  You can read more about what she's been going thru' at her blog site -  trials and tribulations of being a type 1 diabetic.

    So, as I scratch my head about the article saying to not leave the Contact detach in longer then 1-2 days - I figure .... we are all different with how our bodies react to outside invasions of our bodies.  I guess I'm just lucky that so far, touch wood, my body doesn't see that piece of stainless steel in my body as being foreign - but with the Teflon cannula it was like having a flea on a dogs back for me.  Hopefully my luck remains with me.
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