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November 27, 2014
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Pump Plummet


I woke up this morning about 30 minutes before my alarm to answer a call from nature. I stumble to the restroom and as usual I set my insulin pump on the sink counter. I should explain that I have a relatively small bathroom so the sink is pretty much half of the room. Well, no sooner do I set my pump down that it slides off and slams on the floor.
Ouch!
I have had my pump fall before but this one sounded extra hard. I leaned over and picked up my poor pump to see if it was okay. It was not. The screen was blank and even though I closed my eyes and wished for it to be fixed, it did not work.
What the heck am I going to do? I do not have any Lantus which is what I used to take on top of the Humilog I use in my pump. Not to mention, if I did I have no clue what I would take? Things are so different now for me and it has been a year and half since I was on MDI therapy. I started to panic.
Then I thought I should try pulling out the battery to see if that made a difference. I grabbed a quarter and unscrewed the battery cover. I pulled out the battery and shook my pump to see if heard the dreaded rattle of broken internal pieces. Luckily, I heard nothing. I stuffed the battery back in and tightened the cover.
Nothing.
Who do I call first? My endocrinologists office and see if he can get me a prescription for Lantus and some instructions on dosage, or Medtronic (the company who makes my pump) and see if they can send me a replacement immediately? Do I call work now and tell them I am going to be late? Maybe I should hop online and email all of my friends with diabetes and see what they say?
Nope, I decided to try the stupid battery one more time.
When I put the battery back in I saw a screen come up and a countdown which I was praying was not a "self-destruct!" I got a message that read: BATTERY FAILED.
I popped in a new battery and with a glimmer of hope I screwed that cap on. A new screen popped up that said something like: YOU TOOK TOO LONG STUPID! RESET THE DATE AND TIME!
As soon as I verified the day and time my good old pump was back to work.
A have already made an appointment to meet with my Endo soon to learn how to handle this situation in the future and to get a prescription for Lantus.
If you are on a pump, do you have a back up plan if your pump were to stop working? I cannot believe I did not have something ready and feel quite stupid that I didn't. I would love to hear what you do so I can prepare for a future pump plummet.

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Megan Holmes
Megan Holmes Megan was diagnosed in 2009 with Type I. As an RN, she was familiar with the medical side of her diagnosis; learning to be a good patient on the other hand, was and continues to be the challenge of her day to day life.   (Read More)
Michelle Kowalski
Michelle Kowalski Michelle Kowalski, a writer, editor and photography hobbiest living in Phoenix, was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes in February 2005. In January 2008, as part of her quest to start on an insulin pump, Michelle learned that she actually has type 1 diabetes.   (Read More)
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