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March 29, 2004

Insulin Pumps, Traveling

Question from Memphis, Tennessee, USA:

I will be taking my family to Destin, Florida for vacation on the beach. We were wondering if we will have any problems with the pump and the sand. My daughter is four and last year, when we went, she was still on shots, but we are worried about trouble with sand. Are there any suggestions on how we should keep the sand out of the pump?


I think there are two choices. You could use Lantus as a basal injection and give rapid acting insulin, such as Humalog or NovoLog, for meals. That eliminates the sand question. Or, you can disconnect at the beach. Four year olds shouldn’t be out too long anyway, not between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. for most fair children, especially in the Sunshine State. I think the bigger issue is getting sand and salt in the site, which must be changed frequently while at the beach.