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August 8, 2001

Insulin Pumps

Question from West Chester, Pennsylvania, USA:

I am 44 years old, have had diabetes for seven years, and I am thinking of going on an insulin pump. I am taking four or more shots per day, my A1c's have been high 8% range, and my blood sugars are usually good during the day but go high at night. What are your feelings about the pump?


An insulin pump is the ultimate way to deliver insulin because several basal rates can be programmed to take care of the “problem times” of day. Bolus insulin is given before each meal and large snack to match carbohydrate intake (which is probably what you’re already doing on your present regimen).

Having said that, it is also important to note that an insulin pump will not magically lower your hemoglobin A1c. It is merely a precise delivery device which requires careful attention and mastery to work properly. If you are willing to put the time and effort into using a pump, by all means go for it!

See Is pumping for you? and Insulin Pumps.