pumps for a swimmer

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spurry Posted: Wed, Dec 9 2009 8:12 AM

Posting here has been very helpful along the way to give us guidance. My son is 10 and was dx'd in May 2009 with type 1. Now we are at another decision point and some sage advice is needed.

1) We and he want to switch to a pump. He has gotten the ok from endo. He swims (four days/week) and is very interested in the omnipod b/c of its waterproof feature and lack of tubing.  I've read around and saw some concerning things about pod failure, but I couldn't tell if this was old data. Thoughts?

2) What if he didn't wear the pump during practice?

3) Biggie. We are considering changing to Joslin. When we went to our endo, we got presented the pumps they work with and some general guidelines. It is up to us to choose the pump. We also had some prelim discussions re: CGM.  They know he swims and didn't offer a lot of guidance. How would Joslin handle this?


thanks, tim

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zrebiec replied on Fri, Dec 11 2009 9:19 AM

I am glad that you have found these discussion boards. In response to your first question, it is true that all insulin pumps, including the OmniPod, may disconnect or even fail. Certain situations like swimming and contact sports can increase this risk, but families are offered strategies to minimize this risk and manage such situations if they occur. Your health care team can address approaches to your son’s particular situation in greater detail. In response to your second question, your child’s diabetes health care team would need to advise you as to whether your son should wear the pump for swim practice. We do have patients that have worn a pod during swim practice. In response to the last question, if you would like to make an appointment with a Joslin provider for a consultation you can call 617-732-2603. We would be happy to meet with you and your son to discuss with you in more detail all of your questions about the various pumps, including the omnipod pump, how you would utilize a pump during sports, and CGM technology. We can provide a second opinion regarding your child’s care without an obligation to formally transfer care. Good luck!

-Debbie Butler, MSW, CDE

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