diabetes

Backup insulin pens

For a change I’m not going to write here about the latest insulin pumps, CGMs, and closed-loop systems. This is about insulin pens, and possible compatibility between some models that the manufacturers won’t tell you about. Before I started using an insulin pump, I used injection pens for both my short-acting (“bolus”) insulin and my …

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“Hard” or “soft” expiry dates: a Spirit Combo story

We see “expiry” dates on many medical items, and some of them are often treated with a little disdain. For example, lancets tend to last for aeons, and CGM sensors don’t stop working right when their expiry date passes. The Accu-Chek Spirit Combo pump has a few “features” many people seem to not be aware of, …

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Cleo 90 infusion set – forgotten but not gone?

The Cleo 90 is an infusion set for insulin pumps which is available through Australia’s NDSS, but seems to have been forgotten by many people. Since 2010 I’ve used a variety of infusion sets with my pumps. The Animas Inset II (and the equivalent Medtronic Mio) and the Animas Comfort (and the matching Medtronic Silhouette). …

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Pump cannulae and infusion sets: what are the differences?

Cannulae (the plural form of “cannula”) are the tubes we stick into ourselves to infuse insulin from our pumps. They’re either made of steel or flexible teflon. Some go straight in (90˚) and are available in 6 or 9 mm lengths. Some are a lot longer. Today 6 mm is a common recommendation, although longer …

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What’s in a needle?

In diabetes there are lots of times we stab ourselves with needles, and we see the different needles described in various ways. In fact there are lots of different factors to consider when selecting the needles we will use. Particularly referring to the products available in the Australian market, hopefully this overview will be useful. …

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March thoughts on insulin pumps for Australia

Back in early February I wrote about the latest news/rumours about insulin pumps for the Australian market. During my March UK trip I’ve been privileged to meet many other people with type 1 diabetes, in a variety of locations around the country. Some are using closed-loop pump systems, but as usual there’s actually been a …

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Fasting glucose tests

As most people with Type 1 diabetes will know, when visiting your endocrinologist they’ll usually scan over your latest lab blood test results in the appointment. There are many important things tested there, but I’m talking here only about the numbers that relate to blood glucose. Blood glucose (BG) is our primary indicator of how …

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