- Pump error. When I load her insulin cocktail into a syringe, and inject it into her precious little body... I KNOW exactly what just went inside her. I am CONFIDENT it is inside her as I was a key part of the process. Using syringes, I don't ever have to worry that the pump malfunctioned and dumped the entire insulin contents into her little body sending her into hypoglycemic shock (a guaranteed ambulance ride AND fancy-schmancy hospital stay! Thanks but NO THANKS)
- Control. This is kind of covered by pump error, but another aspect of it. When I send my Grade one child to school, I already know that the insulin she needs is already in her system. I don't have to worry about her unplugging the pump (for whatever reason) and failing to put it back on.
- Diabetic Ketoacidosis. I am still haunted by Rowan's ketoacidosis last summer when we nearly lost her. Statistics show that, for a variety of reasons, pump users are more inclined to experience diabetic ketoacidosis. We did that once.... I can't survive it again. And what if she isn't as fortunate to survive it the next time around?
- Scar Tissue. The longer someone has been using an insulin pump, the more scar tissue they have developed, and the insulin is unable to be absorbed. After extended years of pumping, the effective spots for the insulin pump have been significantly decreased.
- Pump Failure all it takes is some air bubbles, kinked tubing, or a disconnection of the tubing, and my sweet L'il girl wouldn't be receiving the insulin anyways. It would simply be trickling down her side. Once again.... when I inject it~ I *KNOW* it's in there, and if some has leaked out, I know that too.... right away. Without any hazard to her health.
- Inserting the infusion set. I know, I know. Pumpers only have to infuse a pump every three days as opposed to multiple needles throughout the day. I don't know what size the catheter is on an infusion set, but my babe gets a 5mm syringe tip. Sometimes 4mm. It's in, it's out, we're done. It's not attached to her for three days in a row. Further, it took so much effort and patience to get Rowan accustomed to injections, I don't want to only have to wrestle her to the ground every three days for a new site. I sometimes wonder if the "blessing" of a couple of days reprieve might actually increase the trauma of the infusion. At least this way, when she gets "shot up" everyday, it's consistent. We know what's coming. There's no dread for her (or me) of "is this the day???" I'm also not confident with her acceptance of a catheter staying on her, in her all the time. I've heard alot of kids feel "normal" when on the pump. Really? I don't see how that can be, because when Rowan is finished getting an injection~ it's done. Out of sight, out of mind. I would assume that having a catheter on you 24/7 would be a very visible reminder of diabetes. If I can give my girl 8 hours of not thinking about it, then I will choose that everytime.
- Emotional Trauma because once you've heard about the little boy who absolutely freaks out and drops into a panic attack everytime the word "site" comes up in conversation, I don't even want to imagine myself in that situation.
- Costs (drum roll, puh-lease!) do I even have to expand on this point? Which by the way, is not at all the most convincing of reasons in my decision. But that being said, I can't help but touch on the fact that a pump costs in the range of $7000. Cartridges and infusion sets are far more expensive than our syringes and old fashioned vials.
But out of all of the reasons that I have listed as to why I won't likely ever put my child on an insulin pump is this: She doesn't want one. She's terrified of them. No one here is ready. We might never be. And that's alright by us. When was it decided that the invention of the insulin pump was the "second coming" of diabetic treatment?
I'm slightly nervous that this post might generate quite the comments. Maybe I'm just traumatized from the time I bashed peanut policies at school, and the outpouring of fury I received from peanut-allergy parents. So before you fire me off a heated or defensive comment, please try to remember that I respect YOUR choice to pump, I just ask that OUR choice be respected as well. After all~ if an insulin pump was the best treatment, wouldn't EVERY T1D be wearing one?
Until then.... syringes are my friend. Our friend! Her friend? Nah~ still don't think she's "friends" with the syringes as of yet.