Insulin Pump

Insertion & Management

Insulin Pump Insertion in Olympia


What is an insulin pump?

An insulin pump is a small computerized device that’s used by diabetic patients to keep blood sugar levels normal. Insulin pumps can dispense specific amounts of insulin throughout the day, which is particularly important following a meal or while asleep. Your pump is programmed to dispense a steady dose of insulin automatically, which is known as your “basal” insulin. After meals, insulin pumps can be manually programmed by the wearer to dispense a “bolus” dose of insulin to keep blood sugar levels normal. These two types of insulin delivery mimic the body’s normal release of insulin in non-diabetic patients.

Why is an insulin pump used?

An insulin pump is used by patients with type 1 diabetes or type 2 diabetes in order to effectively balance blood sugar levels. Diabetes is a chronic disease that prevents the body from properly producing or using insulin, the hormone needed to allow sugar (glucose) to enter cells to create energy. As a result, diabetic patients frequently experience irregular blood sugar levels that must be corrected. Leaving these blood sugar levels unchecked can lead to serious health complications, and can even be fatal. An insulin pump is an effective tool that helps diabetic patients monitor and maintain a safe and healthy blood sugar level.

Compared to traditional insulin injections, insulin pumps eliminate the need for multiple daily injections and also give a patient the ability to make smaller, more accurate adjustments to insulin delivery.

What types of insulin pumps do you offer?

At Shawna Purcell, MD, Diabetes & Weight Loss Center in Olympia, Washington, we offer a few different types of insulin pumps.

  • A “tethered pump” is a small device worn outside the body that contains a cartridge of insulin as well as an infusion set, which is a thin plastic tube that is connected to a patient either in the abdomen or in another discreet area. The pump is typically worn in a pocket or clipped to a belt.
  • A “patch pump” or “micro pump” (also known as a tubeless insulin pump) has no tubing or a very short tube, and the pump that houses the insulin reservoir is attached directly onto the skin. Insulin is administered via a tiny catheter under the skin below the pump. The insulin pump can be worn on the abdomen, lower back, leg or arm. The programming is done with a wireless device that communicates with the pump.

No matter which type of insulin administration you choose, our team of diabetes specialists is here to help manage your treatment. We also offer diabetes education classes to inform patients of their various treatment options.

What does insulin pump insertion and management involve?

At Shawna Purcell, MD we can provide the expert knowledge and personalized care needed to make a decision about using an insulin pump. Patients who are interested in using an insulin pump should consult our team of expert care providers about insulin pump insertion and insulin pump management. Our doctors will make a recommendation and walk you through the entire process of beginning insulin pump use.

What are the advantages of using an insulin pump?

Insulin pumps are an effective tool for keeping blood sugar levels regular with less impact on your day-to-day routine. Some of the many benefits of using an insulin pump include:

  • Predictable and precise insulin delivery
  • No need for multiple daily injections of insulin
  • Tighter blood sugar control and reduced risk of low blood sugar and episodes of severe hypoglycemia
  • Able to make smaller, more accurate adjustments to insulin delivery
  • Patch pump / micro pump can be placed in more discreet location

If you have type 1 or type 2 diabetes and are interested in learning more about getting an insulin pump, the first step is to consult with a diabetes specialist. Shawna Purcell, MD is home to a team of medical experts with extensive background in diabetes and weight loss services. Call 360-596-4614 today or fill out the form on this page to schedule an appointment now.

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