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There are many advantages to using an insulin pump. Just as important, it’s your choice! Anyone can do it, with the right training and support.

Many of the benefits of pumping revolve around the fact a pump helps you better control blood glucose than injecting insulin. It also reduces injections to usually one every three days instead of 20-30. Pump therapy more closely mimics the pancreas and how your body naturally works. It’s designed to maintain your optimal blood glucose level.

A pump is a great choice if you’re committed to checking your blood glucose level frequently. Safe and effective use requires you do your homework and learn the necessary skills before you start therapy. You’ll need to work closely with your healthcare team (doctor, nurse, dietitian, pharmacist, etc.) to ensure your pump experience is a good one, and receive ongoing support and guidance.

We speak from experience when we say it’s not hard and the effort is well worth it. Once you start, you’ll quickly see the benefits are numerous:

  • Increased lifestyle flexibility and quality of life
  • Simplified diabetes management
  • Fewer injections
  • Precise and predictable insulin delivery
  • More effective blood glucose control
  • Fewer wide fluctuations in blood glucose levels
  • Less frequent hypoglycemia (low blood glucose)
  • Less frequent post-meal high blood glucose
  • Allows you to eat what you want when you want
  • Less frequent dawn phenomenon (high blood glucose)
  • Eliminates unpredictable effects of intermediate- or long-acting insulin
  • Allows for exercise without needing a large amount of carbohydrates beforehand
  • Gives greater piece of mind to loved ones

People of all ages with type 1 diabetes use insulin pumps, and those with type 2 diabetes have started to use them as well. Is it time for you to consider becoming a pumper?

Many of us who work in diabetes care feel strongly that insulin pump therapy is the best available treatment for selected people with diabetes who use insulin. It provides better quality of life (compared to injections), along with better blood sugar control with less hypoglycemia. It can be fine-tuned to work for each individual user. I would encourage you to discuss this therapy with your health care team to see if it would be right for you. From my personal experience, both as an endocrinologist and as someone with type 1 diabetes, those of you who choose this technology will not be disappointed. More importantly, you will never look back.
- Amish Parikh, MD, MEDd, FRCPC
Type 1/1974 - Pumper 2002