Saturday, June 21, 2014

T:Slim - Two weeks in...

Justin has been on the t:slim for two weeks now. You can read all about my initial thoughts here.

Justin is still loving it, of course. I feel is has its pro's and con's.

When it comes to being user friendly, I'm not sure it could get much better. The touch screen for adding carb amounts and bg #'s beats the thumb aerobics it took to get all that info into the Ping... AND if you mess something up, you don't have to start all over. BONUS!

Changing carb ratios and basal rates... super easy. You don't have to button push through the entire list just to change one rate... choose the one you want, and tada!!
I do have one complaint about the way this is set up though... On the ping the basal rates, i:c ratios, ISF and bg target all had separate screens for you to set them up. All of this info is in one place on the slim. So say Justin's basal is .625 from 7am to noon, but I need a different i:c ratio for breakfast and lunch... I have to set up a whole new block within the profile... so both blocks will be exact basal except for the i:c ratio. This is by no means the end of the world, but I can foresee it getting confusing when Justin is trying to read off all the settings to the Endo(as he does at every appt). The CDE even questioned why I had like 3 blocks with the same basal rate... and it was because either the carb ratio or the ISF was different.

Again, not the end of the world, but I prefer them separate. Maybe I just like the info in different screens because all the numbers, all at once, can become overwhelming.

I consider this a safety fail for the younger users... It doesn't subtract insulin to correct low-ish bg's. For whatever reason, the slim does not start subtracting insulin until they are 69(or below). So if he's 70... I have to manually subtract insulin from the suggested delivery so that he doesn't end up low(ish) again. This may be a HUGE challenge when school starts. Justin would have to know his different sensitivity factors and targets(they vary during PE etc...) in order to do this on his own. On top of that... he actually has to remember to do it in the first place. Not sure why Tandem would give the pump the capability to subtract, but not let it base it off the target rate rather then what the standard low bg may be. Maybe we were just spoiled since the Ping did this for us.

Site changes... holy mother of crap they are a pain in the ass!!!! I'm not even going to abbreviate it... that's how bad it is. As easy as the touch screen feature is... they sure didn't mimic that ease of use into the cartridge fill. Granted, I have waisted a little less insulin with each cartridge change, but the process is lengthy and frustrating. To be honest, if Justin didn't love it so much... this may have been a deal breaker for me.

Apidra(sigh) - when they said it didn't work in this pump, they weren't kidding. I was in hopes that we would be one of the lucky ones that didn't have any trouble, but no such luck. For us, the Apidra stops working around the 18th hour in the slim. This means extra site/cartridge changes... kill me! Only six vials of Apidra to go... I'm trying not to throw away money, but I probably won't last that long.

Charging the t:slim... one day, I will actually remember to plug it in while he's in the shower. One day! The battery does last a while... thank goodness. I think I've only charged it twice since he started wearing it two weeks ago and it hasn't died yet. Can't say the same about the meter though. It will be nice not to spend all that money on batteries anymore.

Speaking of the meter... I still love the Verio IQ(aside from the need to charge it thing). Strips take way less blood then the Ultra strips and I have not had an error yet. I managed to score a Verio sync too... so I'll have to try and compare the two when I get a chance.

I am in hopes that the site changes will get easier. Cross your fingers for me.

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Pumping with T:slim

It's official, we are now part of the t:slim family. 

Its been less than 48 hours, but his excitement has made all my concerns take a back seat. 
Mind you, I have not had to do a site change, YET. When we went to training, the CDE did the first cartridge fill to show me how its done. We may have to revisit my stress level after I do one on my own... thank goodness for youtube, I guess.

So far the pump has been great. Aside from trying to bolus him a few times from the Ping remote(twice... for realz), I think we're adjusting to the new(by "we're" I mean Justin, btw). I need to pack away that remote so I'm not temped, but first, I need to find a meter that will use those strips(aside from the mini). I DO absolutely LOVE the Verio IQ. I plan to switch to it, but the supply hoarder in me has about 6 months worth of the ultra test strips to use. Plus, I need to make sure my insurance will cover the Verio strips... all those "non-preferred" supplies and all.

I really hope they do because the light at the end of that baby is AWESOME(said in my singing voice).
I had no idea what I've been missing all this time... I was light deprived.

So just to be all official, here are my initial thoughts on the t:slim...

I love the ease of it - even an old mom like me can figure out how to use it(although I do still need to find the quick bolus button).

I love that I can see the IOB (and the duration) right on the home screen - this feature saves a lot of button pushes(and guessing).

Justin loves it - which makes any of the following worth dealing with. - last minute, right before you run out the door, site changes are a thing of the past. The slim goes at its own pace and there's no rushin it. It also boluses slow.

**In all fairness, I was warned about this though**

There are A LOT of confirmation screens - also warned and probably more of an annoyance to Justin then it is to me.

I do have one REALLY valid complaint though... The T:clip

He had only been wearing it for about three hours and a t:clip bit the dust.
All he did was get out of the car and bam... pump was hanging from the tube.
At almost $20 bucks a piece... these should really be a little more durable. Thankfully this one was given to us, so it didn't hurt... as bad, anyways.

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