The MiniMed insulin pump is literally a lifesaver, not to mention a sanity saver. It can drastically improve a diabetic’s quality of life.
Diabetes without the MiniMed Insulin Pump
Without the use of a MiniMed insulin pump living with uncontrolled diabetes may become madness. Blood glucose readings may erratically fluctuate between 40 and 600, mine did. According to the Mayo Clinic a random blood sugar test of less than 100 is normal. A test of 100 to 199 indicates prediabetes and 200 or more suggests diabetes. A reading below 70 indicates hypoglycemia (low blood sugar). Severe hypoglycemia may cause an instant heart attack. So, when it comes to diabetes, lows are much worse than highs.
A diabetic may feel trapped in a spiraling and degenerating madness perpetuated by pills, doctor visits, glucose meter readings, blood sugar tracking charts, and insulin injections. The fight to get diabetes under control may be maddening and frustrating. Diabetics may be starving most of the time due to a stringent low-carbohydrate diet and suffer weight loss. I was down to 95 pounds. They may also be tired all of the time unable to sleep due to frequent hypoglycemia attacks in the night. I suffered a seizure in my sleep due to such an attack. The need for insulin injections may accelerate. I was up to seven a day just to eat enough to survive. Ultimately, I suffered a heart attack.
Thanks to the grace of God, a helicopter ride, and one hell of a cardiologist I am here to share my experience with the MiniMed Insulin Pump.
Learning to use the MiniMed Insulin Pump
Becoming comfortable with the pump is a highly individual process and everyone learns to use it at his or her own pace. I found the pump very easy to learn in just three lessons.
Lesson #1: My instructor covered all of the pump’s functions and features. For the next week, I reviewed MiniMed’s manual and DVD, and attended pump school online. I also practiced with the disconnected pump.
Lesson #2: With the guidance of my instructor, I set-up and connected the pump. I wore it for a one-week trial filled with saline rather than insulin as a safety precaution.
Lesson #3: As the trial run ran without a glitch, all of the pertinent information was reviewed. I filled the pump with insulin and. I have been using it, problem-free, ever since.
MiniMed’s training process was terrific. I had access to a 24/7 instructor’s pager number, helpline and website. You are never left stranded with the MiniMed insulin pump from the moment you begin to use it for as long as you own it.
How the MiniMed Insulin Pump Works
Contrary to some rumors, the pump is NOT implanted via surgery. It is worn outside of the body like a pager. A tiny plastic needle called a cannula is placed under the skin, usually in the abdomen. Arms, legs and the buttocks are also options. The cannula connects to very thin plastic tubing that connects to the pump. You replace it every three days without medical assistance. Once I insert it, I never feel it.
The MiniMed insulin pump has an LCD screen with scrollable menus. It has many features but its two most prevalent are BASAL and BOLUS settings. The BASAL setting delivers a small, steady flow of insulin. The BOLUS delivers additional insulin for food intake. You are in total control of these settings. Insulin delivery does not take place without your knowledge and approval. The settings may be changed anytime and the pump may be stopped instantly. It may also be completely removed whenever you choose.
I am not going to lie to you, my friends; the MiniMed insulin pump is not a cure for diabetes. It is not an artificial pancreas, though it comes close. High and low blood glucose readings are still possible. Therefore, you must always remember to use your blood glucose monitor. By the way, the MiniMed monitor reads directly to the pump via an infrared signal. This is a convenient feature as you never have to enter your readings into the pump manually; they appear automatically. The MiniMed insulin pump requires effort and diligence to learn to use, but it is not beyond the realm of anyone with average intelligence. The training effort is a small price to pay for the many benefits the pump has to offer.
How the MiniMed Insulin Pump Has Changed my Life
I no longer have to take diabetes pills and I no longer starve on a low-carbohydrate diet. I eat anything I want, any time I please. I no longer have to stick myself with needles seven times per day. I have not needed one insulin injection since I began using my MiniMed insulin pump.
My blood glucose readings no longer range between 40 and 600. Now, the normal range is between 60 and 240, consistently. I was able to achieve this range within just one month of acquiring the MiniMed insulin pump and I have been able to maintain it for five months now. Gone are the drastic ups and downs that were such a strain on my overall health.
The MiniMed insulin pump has also improved the quality of my life by making it so much easier for me to participate in outdoor activities. It is also so lightweight and comfortable that many times I forget I am wearing it. The pump can be worn discreetly, but when I wear it openly no one notices. It has given me back much of the freedom to live my life that I had lost when I became a diabetic. As I said, it is always at my side and on my side.
Bottom line, I would never give up my MiniMed insulin pump for any other diabetes treatment. God forbid my own child or any other loved one should develop diabetes, I would insist that they get a MiniMed insulin pump as soon as possible. The best thing I ever did for myself and my family since I became a diabetic was to get this little gadget on my side.
Diabetes and Your Life
If you, or a loved one, are having difficulty controlling diabetes, please consult your healthcare professional about a MiniMed insulin pump, or contact MiniMed directly. Their representatives are extremely friendly and helpful. Many insurance companies, including Medicare, cover the pump. So, why run the risk of heart attack and all of the other complications of poorly controlled diabetes? Why not find out if a MiniMed insulin pump may be right for you?