Do you change your pump site every 2-3 days as recommended or do you go longer? Are there any risks to changing less often? I usually change every 4 days but am considering going longer as I only take a total of 7-8 units per day including mealtime insulin and for some strange reason site changes cause severe low blood sugar the dr thinks its due to my extreme insulin sensitivity/low insulin needs/& the fresh insulin.
When I first started pumping I found that sometimes my sites would start to hurt or stop working properly at 3 days. I decided to just change them every 2 days. That was fine. I was using teflon coated cannula sets, and they seemed to irritate my skin.
When started using metal needle sets they were painless, left less of a mark and did not stop working as quickly. As I used them, and began to get my blood sugars consistently lower, I became less sensitive to longer usage of sites. Now I go 6-7 days and don't even really feel the need to change it, but do it anyway. It's great to get more time out of my insusion sites and CGMS sensors.
I think part of it is that my tissues are healthier and also that the metal sets are less irritating. Now I just change my cyborg sites on the weekends.
6-7 Days? Wow! Are there any risks involved in leaving it in that long?
I know that other pumpers also go longer, but you have to see what your tissues can tolerate. As I said, I couldn't have gotten away with it until I was getting improved BG control and using metal needle sets (Sure-Ts). The risk is that if your skin isn't loving it, you can get more scar tissue or have slower healing at each previous site. I'm not having any noticeable trouble.
Also,it's just a theory, but I think that since I stopped eating grains/gluten I have been able to tolerate the infusion sites longer. I'm guessing everyone might have different results.
I generally try to change right around day 3 or 4. However, if I notice that a site isn't absorbing properly, I will change it sooner. If a site is clearly absorbing fine and there is no irritation or anything, I will keep it on upwards of 5 days.
When you change your site, are you priming it with the correct amount of insulin? For example, if you're using the 6mm canula, you should only be priming it with 0.3 units of insulin (not 0.5 like you would for the 9mm). I only ask because I made this mistake once and ended up low!
It's really not a great idea to leave your site in longer than like 4 maybe 5 days. It can cause scar tissue which lessens your body's ability to absorb the insulin. My old endo liked to tell me about this patient he had who ended up getting these really big lumps where he used to wear his sites, because he didn't change it often enough and didn't rotate it to enough places. I don't know about you, but my sites start to either hurt or itch if I leave them in too long. sometimes they bruise or bleed too. So I would really say change it every three days if only for cosmetic reasons haha. no one wants big lumps on their body.
I run 5 days on average and change my site same time as CGM.
I change sides of my body every month so a site pint gets to heal approx 7 weeks. Works for me. I found that at 2.5 days the meter to BG accuracy is incredibly close. At 6.5 days it starts to do radical drifts. If a push past 7 days, I cannot trust the cgm at all.
Thanks so much for the wonderful replys! I have been changing every 4 days but am considering going 5 days every once in a while.
Here is a warning from a reckless infusion set changer:
I used to go 4-6 days (or perhaps even longer) without changing my infusion set. I did not notice ANY problems with absorption and I never had an infection. So I figured that I found a great way to save time and money!! BUT... and this is a BIG BUT...
You will have more scar tissue that way. You won't see it, but it will be building up. After about 5 years of pumping, the absorption in my favorite site location (upper buttocks) is inconsistent. Using that site now can lead to unexplained highs. So my infusion options are more and more limited.
So if you are planning on pumping for a while, I highly encourage you to follow the advice and change the infusion location regularly and don't forget to rotate, rotate, rotate!!
I now use Sure-Ts (which I LOVE!!!) and I can reuse the same infusion set without leaving it in the same time. So I still get about 6 days out of an infusion set, but I change the location of the site every two days.
ERRR Busted!!! I change out every 4 days myself.I have been told by the Dr and the MM rep that it could cause an infection at the site but so far so good.