I noticed in a diabetic group the other day on Facebook - that some people have never heard of the stainless steel infusion sets that some of insulin pumpers use (Medtronic (MM) is a Sure-T, Animas is a Contact Detach, Accu-Chek is a Rapid D). I know the ones made for Animas and Medtronic – are all made by the same company – Unomedical.
For some people, giving an injection, with a syringe or pen needle, even with the smaller gauges available AND length of needles, TOTALLY freaks them out. I can understand with what we had back in the early years of needles meant for elephants buttocks (wait – I was using them on my human buttock as a child – yikeroos). Times have changed, thank goodness, it's easier to inject, but still some diabetics who have had this disease as long as I have, can’t inject themselves. Putting a CGMS or infusion set into place on their body - they cannot do. I find with the Contact Detach I have no problems with placing into my skin (it is 29 gauge). With other infusion sets available, I find the introducer needle that comes with the plastic cannula infusion sets very daunting. I almost fainted the first time I put one in place, it was sooooo long, compared to the 6mm / 8mm length stain steel needle.
Image courtesy of http://www.traveling9to5.com/
The one thing I do have a beef about - and I'd mentioned about this a few weeks ago at Blogger - the cost of the infusion sets to Canadians (and those of us not living in the USA). The price that we pay for the infusion sets shows quite a wide gap in prices. For example, my Contact Detach here in Canada costs $155 - if I was an American - I'd be paying $94. I thought it was perhaps due to our value of our dollar - but we're pretty close to being at par these days. The price list as well - since I started pumping over 5 years ago - hasn't changed at all. When I spoke to Animas Canada about the price difference today - Alexis - one of the staff there who took my order (and a pumper herself) - said that due to duty/tarriffs and our smaller pumping compared to the States that this is why we - and other countries pay more. Huh???? I tried to figure out what the cost was to ship the product from Mexico - to United States - then Canada - but I'd have to have my brain go to school to figure all the ins/outs of trading between these countries through the Canada Border Service Agency website.
To help some of you understand what one of these infusion sets are all about - since some people think the needle portion of the infusion set had to be removed from the skin - here's a great video of a young boy putting in this type of infusion set at this link. He makes it look so easy (and it is - though watching him made me realise - how long it takes to do this procedure - as it's about 6 minutes from start to finish to perform the task).
Hopefully the video helps explain what a stainless steel infusion set is for some of you who don't know what it is. Personally, I find it causes less skin irritation for me - as I have a slight Teflon allergy in the plastic cannula's that are used in infusion sets). The other good thing is, it's less expensive to purchase than other infusion sets. Also, I find due to the connecting port that is on your skin (there is the infusion site AND the connecting port – both glued to your skin) – less chances of ripping off infusion set completely – it’s like a safety chain in a way. I'd posted about the Contact Detach a few years ago as well - if you want a less model type figure to look at - then you can check out my blog that contains the link.