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Okay, I'm brand new to pumping, and I think that may be part of the issue, but in my first box of 10 resevoirs, I had two that were faulty.
I could fill them from the vial, no problem, but then, when I attached them to the new infusion set, the plunger wouldn't go down, and (for the first one) when I attached it to the pump I got a "no delivery" error. I didn't try for the second one. To make sure it was the pump and not the set, I attached the tubing I'd just taken off, and it had the same plunger issue.
So, I have a few questions.
First: is it just me? I mean, I know that I'm brand new to pumping, have just changed my set for the seventh time, haven't even gone through my first box of resevoirs, so it could just be my inexperience.
Second: is this a common problem? Is it unusual to have issues 2/9 reservoirs (I haven't opened the last one or I'd say 1/5)? Because if this is a common problem, it's going to get old, fast.
Third: What do I do with the faulty reservoirs? Call customer support? Call the sales rep?
I'm using a Medtronic 523, with medtronic resevoirs (and quick-sets, but they haven't had a problem, yet).
before I fill it, I push the plunger back and forth inside the empty reservoir. I've only used Accu-chek (Disetronic) pumps. and heck yes, I'd call them. they might even have some other ideas.
The thing is, the plunger works when I'm filling the reservoir and it's attached to the vial. It's just when I attach it to the tubing that I have issues--which makes me think that the gummy stuff that the needle has to go through to get to the insulin is just a hair too thick--so that the longer needle to fill from the vial can get through but not the shorter needle to attach it to the tubing.
edited because forums make me have a headache
Your Medtronic system sounds very different from my Animas system,(We take the plunger out and throw it away before it goes into the pump) so I can't help with specifics. (If you haven't already, you might want to post on the Medtronic Group as well). But yes, definitely, call the Medtronic Customer support. (not the sales rep). They should have a 24 hour tech support number. They will give you advice as well as tell you how to send them back or get credit for them if they are, in fact, defective. But you might also find out you need to do something differently to make them work right.
The first month or two is definitely a learning curve.Hang in there, it gets easier!
also here's a good video of a site and reservoir change, I'll bet MM has videos on their site too.
(also shows the cgm too)
I use the same pump and quick sets that you do, and I have had this problem before... although not as often as you.
Actually, it just happened last week. Once I hook up the reservoir to the tubing, I always manually prime it (I've been a pumper for a long time, and this is how it used to be for all pumps.. old habits die hard). Sometimes, the reservoir feels like there is back pressure when I try to push in the plunger. Last week, I just pushed it REALLY HARD.. insulin shot through and it ended up working fine.
I haven't called customer service because it rarely happens, but if you're having a problem I would definitely call. They can be very helpful
This happens sometimes either due to pressure, or the o-ring gets stuck or both.
Here are some tricks I learned from MM tech support.
There is lubrication inside the reservoir, and it needs to be 'spread out' along the inside. So before inserting to the insulin bottle, first use the plunger to move and rotate the black o-ring within the reservoir.
BEFORE FILLING - Hold the black o-ring portion on the reservoir, and twist the plunger to make sure it will easily come off later. Twist it back, but not too tight.
Then fill with insulin. Let the insulin come into the reservoir SLOWLY to avoid bubbles and pressure imbalance.
After filling, attach reservoir to the infusion set, and using plunger, push gently, to verify insulin moves into infusion set. This is where you will know if there is a problem, rather than waiting to let your pump push first.
Remove/twist off the plunger, and it should twist out easily. Avoid squeezing on the reservoir / o-ring, as this may let in air, or off-set the pressure.
Load reservoir to pump, and follow pump instructions to finish priming the tubing.
Since following these tips, I have not had a 'stuck' reservoir in many years.
Thanks, all. Zoe--we do unscrew the plunger, but I didn't find it difficult to screw back in when I had issues.
Thank you for confirming that I'm not doing anything terribly wrong--I'm going to get this sorted. And thanks for the tips. I've been doing some of that, but I didn't know about the lubrication thing.
No, with the Ping you remove the plunger before you connect it to the infusion set. We don't "using plunger, push gently to verify insulin moves into infusion set".
We don't have that step.
Hope some of everyone's tips helps.
Zoe - pushing the plunger was a tip provided by MM tech support, to deal with the situation that Teowyn reported. It is a preventive step, and eliminates the frustration of having the pump report no delivery, when it is unable to prime the tubing due to pressure or a stuck o-ring.
Oh, I see, thanks for the explanation. I just figured the two pump models worked differently!
Mega got it right on for mini med. I do exactly what he says, but will add two things:
Once I have primed the O ring and reservoir, I set the plunger half way down the tube to the amount I will fill it. If I fill with 100 units, I will set the plunger at 50 and only shoot that much air into the bottle of insulin. That creates a suction drag that help prevent bubbles in the reservoir. When I pull the needle apparatus, it is removed from the reservoir first. This allows air to fill and equalize in the insulin bottle.
When I attach the tubing to the reservoir, I stick the needle in, and then twist the tubing cap to the right until it clicks. If this does not happen, you always get a no delivery alarm.
The last item has been the only problem I have ever had with the reservoir, and I have been on the MM paradigm over 5 years. But if you have problems, always call suppport. They will want you to return the ones that were not working correctly and will replace them at no charge. That way they can "test" the parts to see if they have a bad lot or something.