Monday, November 22, 2010

Bubble Trouble?

When my boys first started pumping, we were obsessed with bubbles. OBSESSED. We constantly checked the line and more often than not, there would be an epic airline within the tubing. We would prime it out, and BAM another huge bubble would be just waiting to totally mess with the boys blood sugars.

We spoke to our endo many many times about it. She was stumped. She didn’t think it should have been as big a problem as it was. But…it was.

Those bubbles made our life miserable…especially our little diabetic boy who had to deal with the wonky numbers and the constant set changes.

We finally resorted to reading the pump manual from beginning to end. Step by step we followed the instructions. We finally found the problem. It seemed like such a little step, but it made ALL the difference in the world…

Since then, we have watched many videos of people doing set changes and noticed that many miss this simple step too. If you miss this step, try giving it a shot. If you already do this step…my apologies for dragging this all out. :) This step is important for Medronic pumps as well as Animas. Actually, it is even MORE important with the Animas, because of its reservoir design.

Here you go:

After you fill the reservoir with insulin…usually people take off the plunger and then screw on the cap that is attached to the tubing.

Don’t do this. Leave the plunger on and screw on the cap. Then flick the bottle and push the plunger up ever so slightly to get rid of the extra bubbles and get the insulin started up into the tubing. Just couple inches of insulin in the tubing will do. THEN take off the plunger and continue with your other steps.

Easy, right?

Makes a HUGE difference. We have never had bubble problems after doing this step. In fact, I can’t remember the last time we even looked at the boys tubing for bubbles.

I also know…that cold insulin makes more bubbles too. We always use room temperature insulin inside pumps. Besides the fact that injecting cold insulin hurts like a mother…it also is prone to bubbles. Some people take this as an old wives tale, but following this rule has never steered us wrong.

A couple ever so little, ever so important tips from Our Diabetic Life to yours.


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