Thursday, September 8, 2011

Vampire Infusion Sets

Yes, vampires can be cool. Vampire infusion sets are definitively not. If you're not fond of blood, then I don't know how we can be friends (not really, because I have all sorts of friends but read on). Mostly because little finger pricks for blood drops are involved between 4-15 (it feels like a billion most days) times a day for me. I have to warn you that if you get faint at the sight of gross things like blood, you DON'T want to scroll down (although even if you were, you would because I just told you not to).

I posted a few weeks ago about some issues rotating sites with my hips. Apparently, the same is true with my thighs. To be honest, I'm just having all sorts of new issues with infusion sites that make me want to go back to just using my stomach again. I'm fairly certain that the last site I pulled out was infected from the gooey stuff that oozed out of it and the raised . I'm used to seeing some liquid (I can only assume it's insulin) come back out when I pull out an old site (actually it happens sometimes with regular needles too). Most of the time, I don't account for it unless my blood sugar is rising/high.

What I've noticed is that any of my bloody (no, no like the English mean it) infusion sites usually take 6-24 hours and then they're fine. No more blood (not in the cannula, not on my clothes). Just the gross outline of it on the little gauze adhesive that surrounds it (see any of the pictures). This is what keeps me from tearing them out and putting in a new one. Because I don't think they're is ever a guarantee that it won't bleed (but I think its cause I dread putting in new ones). And it's not like a stab myself with one and it's gushing blood (cause if there were I might even do a glucose test with it for fun). It usually takes an hour before any blood starts showing and three before there's a weird pool of gunk on my infusion site.

I know that everyone says to pull out a set that is overly painful or bleeding. I can't say that they hurt. And to be honest, I HATE wasting perfectly good supplies. So is it worth it? An hour or two or twelve of a little uncertainty with my infusion set in exchange for a little less pain? I do it. I don't recommend it. The only thing I can recommend is trying to change sets in the morning or the middle of the day so you can push more insulin, because waking up at 262 mg/dl is not the way to start off any day. If you have any feedback, I'd love to hear from you. In the meantime, here are the gross pictures I mentioned (and no, they haven't been enhanced for total gross-ness):

Fresh and bloody infusion site after 24 hours

Bloody site after being removed

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