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March 13, 2018

Hypoglycemia, Insulin Pumps

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Question from Monroe, Georgia, USA:

My daughter had a weekend of lows and we were trying to think of reasons why. She asked if site placement affects insulin delivery and the effects of insulin. She had her last site on her arm but changed it to her abdomen. I have read a bit on the Internet that the abdomen is the most common site for set insertion but I haven’t found information on absorption. I’m still looking; I just wanted to get an expert opinion. We actually have an endocrine appointment this week.

Answer:

It could be she has some hypertrophy at overused sites and changing to a new site allowed better absorption – so “increased” insulin availability could be the explanation. There are obvious other explanations, I assume, like more activity, less food, less fatty foods and illness always need to be considered but, if none of these were the explanation, then the new site is the likely culprit and just means that the dose of insulin needs adjusting downwards to counter-balance and avoid the lows.

SB