Ever had an insulin pump on the playa?

Questions, answers, tips & tricks for newbies and veterans alike

Ever had an insulin pump on the playa?

Postby kitkatseattle » Wed Jul 27, 2011 11:38 am

Hello! I wanted to know if anyone has had experience with an insulin pump for diabetics on the playa. My Mom would love to go to Burning Man, but is concerned of the intrusion effect the playa would have on her pump. Any info/stories would be greatly appreciated!
See all you lovelies at the Burn!
Kat
User avatar
kitkatseattle
 
Posts: 52
Joined: Fri Jul 09, 2010 10:49 am

Re: Ever had an insulin pump on the playa?

Postby Savannah » Wed Jul 27, 2011 11:48 am

This link doesn't have anything about pumps specifically, but might still be useful.
http://www.burningman.com/preparation/e ... betic.html

People manage a lot of workarounds for their health issues out there; it's very impressive.
User avatar
Savannah
Moderator
 
Posts: 10517
Joined: Mon Sep 01, 2008 8:33 pm
Burning Since: 2000

Re: Ever had an insulin pump on the playa?

Postby kitkatseattle » Wed Jul 27, 2011 7:30 pm

Thanks Savannah! Nothing about pumps specifically, but still good information that I will share with her. She helped with sewing costumes and other prep last year and this year, I just know she would love it!
User avatar
kitkatseattle
 
Posts: 52
Joined: Fri Jul 09, 2010 10:49 am

Re: Ever had an insulin pump on the playa?

Postby trilobyte » Wed Jul 27, 2011 7:35 pm

I don't have any practical experience, but another thing to consider would be to reach out to the team that staffs the medical tents. Most (if not all) are medical professionals by day, and they may have some invaluable tips and suggestions.
User avatar
trilobyte
Site Admin
 
Posts: 10628
Joined: Tue Mar 02, 2004 11:54 pm
Location: San Francisco
Burning Since: 2004
Camp Name: Eridu Society

Re: Ever had an insulin pump on the playa?

Postby kitkatseattle » Wed Jul 27, 2011 7:43 pm

That's a good idea Trilobyte. I can do that this year, since she wouldn't try to go until possibly next year anyway.
User avatar
kitkatseattle
 
Posts: 52
Joined: Fri Jul 09, 2010 10:49 am

Re: Ever had an insulin pump on the playa?

Postby feldman13 » Thu Jul 28, 2011 8:07 am

Kitkat----

My wife is a type1 Diabetic and is on a Medtronic pump. We have brought her out to the Playa with it 4 years now and haven't had any major problems with it. The biggest thing to consider is that the pumps don't respond well to heat. The way we figured out to deal with it was to take a mylar mailing envelope (silver with the pill bubbles in it) to act as an insulator. We also kept it in a zip lock the entire week (the ones with the slide lock). The zip lock goes into the mylar sleeve (you can cut it down to closer to the size of the pump and use clear packing tape on it). We also found a cell phone case with a velcro closure on it. I have also seen carabineer cell cases that work really well for holding the pump where you want it. She found out or first year that the elastic strap Medtronic gives you make you really uncomfortable with rubbing and sweating under it.

Every year we also bring out a full tube change set for every day. She is usually able to maintain her normal rotation but it's better to be safe than sorry. Also make sure to bring out at least one extra vial of insulin as a back up; depending on how sever your mothers insulin dependence is, maybe two. Try and find a friend with an RV to use the fridge otherwise daily walks to Artica and a good cooler work too. Just remember to zip lock the insulin before you put it in the cooler water.
It's more than doable - my wife and I are even part of Conclave on playa. It doesn't need to limit anything you do.

Cheers and Good Luck,

Camo Mike
Last edited by feldman13 on Thu Jul 28, 2011 4:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.
feldman13
 
Posts: 1
Joined: Sun Jun 26, 2011 1:24 am
Location: Minneapolis

Re: Ever had an insulin pump on the playa?

Postby theCryptofishist » Thu Jul 28, 2011 10:02 am

If you want to get in touch with the medical people on playa, nine-wun-wun att burningman dot(ty) com(ma).
They will be getting busy now, so don't expect them to drop everything to help, pretty much information only, if that in August.
Simon's real sig line?

Embrace the Sock

Winners never quilt, quilters never win...
User avatar
theCryptofishist
 
Posts: 37413
Joined: Mon Feb 23, 2004 10:28 am
Location: In Exile
Burning Since: 2017

Re: Ever had an insulin pump on the playa?

Postby SnowBlind » Thu Jul 28, 2011 12:13 pm

feldman13 wrote:Just remember to zip lock the insulin before you put it in the cooler water.


I have no experience with Insulin, but I've had stuff in ziplock bags in the cooler, and it seems that after a while water always gets in there, even if I double and triple check the zipper. I never figured out if the water comes in thru the zipper or the other seams. If I take the bag out, it seems watertight and keeps the water inside perfectly. :?

I suppose it's possible that I'm just zip lock bag incompentent, but I find what works better is
- drain the cooler frequently, so that the zip lock bag is sitting on ice and not deep water
- have a cooler that has one of those little top compartments that is basically suspended over the ice
User avatar
SnowBlind
 
Posts: 331
Joined: Fri Aug 11, 2006 5:27 pm
Location: SF Bay Area

Re: Ever had an insulin pump on the playa?

Postby SnowBlind » Thu Jul 28, 2011 12:14 pm

Feldman13, you may want to obfuscate that email address, otherwise it will be picked up by spam bots.
User avatar
SnowBlind
 
Posts: 331
Joined: Fri Aug 11, 2006 5:27 pm
Location: SF Bay Area

Re: Ever had an insulin pump on the playa?

Postby bud buddah » Thu Jul 28, 2011 4:31 pm

I'm a type 1 diabetic, but I still take shots. On the playa I keep my insulin in my cooler with no problem. But if she does that, make sure it's not on ice. It's not good to freeze it, just keep it cool. She also should talk to her doc about adjusting her dose. The heat tends to make everyone eat less, and the erratic schedule tends to make it tough to eat on a regular schedule. But tell her that it definitely can work out just fine. I was surprised by just how little grief I had with my blood sugars.
Bud

PM me here if she wants to talk in detail.
bud buddah
 
Posts: 73
Joined: Tue Jun 15, 2010 9:26 pm

Re: Ever had an insulin pump on the playa?

Postby Savannah » Thu Jul 28, 2011 4:37 pm

Zipper bags do seem to get compromised a little. It might work to seal the insulin in a baggy or two, then tape it to the inside of the cooler lid near the seal of the bag, with a strong water-resistant tape. Some extra baggies and extra tape in case one rips the bag. Then the insulin stays cool but not wet.

You might even be able to open and shut the baggie a few times before needing a new bag. One strip of tape across the bottom, another towards the top but not over the seal, so you can open and close it; the insulin could rest on the "hammock of plastic" between the two strips.
User avatar
Savannah
Moderator
 
Posts: 10517
Joined: Mon Sep 01, 2008 8:33 pm
Burning Since: 2000

Re: Ever had an insulin pump on the playa?

Postby FIGJAM » Thu Jul 28, 2011 5:16 pm

Velcro it to the inside of the lid of the ice cheast.
"Don't buy ur Burn...........Build ur Burn!"

Fuck Im Good Just Ask Me
User avatar
FIGJAM
 
Posts: 7072
Joined: Thu Mar 25, 2010 10:39 am
Location: apache junction az.

Re: Ever had an insulin pump on the playa?

Postby MyDearFriend » Thu Jul 28, 2011 5:44 pm

FIGJAM wrote:Velcro it to the inside of the lid of the ice cheast.


Bingo. Or, velcro the top of a plastic container to the inside lid, & keep the insulin in that. Old-timey insulin vials would fit in plastic film canisters, you could drop them in a thermos of ice water no problem, but now we have prefilled auto-dose syringes and everything else... harder & easier at the same time.

I would imagine that sticking to a time schedule for monitoring would be be hard, much less eating on time...

Good luck though! 8) Good for you!
Practice Love. Exercise Sex.

"When life seems dangerous and unmanageable, just remember that it is, and that you can't survive forever."
User avatar
MyDearFriend
 
Posts: 3097
Joined: Sat Nov 06, 2010 5:22 am
Location: Washington, DC
Burning Since: 2011
Camp Name: Barbie Death Camp DREAD PIRATE BARBIE

Re: Ever had an insulin pump on the playa?

Postby kitkatseattle » Thu Jul 28, 2011 10:38 pm

Thank you everyone for all of the good information and suggestions! Camo Mike, I will pass all of that experience on to my Mom, it really does sound doable!
Cheers,
Kat
User avatar
kitkatseattle
 
Posts: 52
Joined: Fri Jul 09, 2010 10:49 am

Re: Ever had an insulin pump on the playa?

Postby BAS » Sat Jul 30, 2011 9:07 am

Thanks for this thread! I have a diabetic friend who is interested in going, and he uses a pump, too. (The idea about taping/velcroing stuff to the top of a cooler is a good idea for things other than insulin, too.)
"Nothing is withheld from us which we have conceived to do.
Do things that have never been done."
--Russell Kirsch
User avatar
BAS
 
Posts: 4220
Joined: Sun Apr 18, 2004 7:46 pm
Location: Wisconsin
Burning Since: 2006

Re: Ever had an insulin pump on the playa?

Postby kitkatseattle » Tue Aug 02, 2011 7:55 am

I'm glad it's helped you too BAS, people have been great with their responses! Good luck with your friend that has the pump too!
User avatar
kitkatseattle
 
Posts: 52
Joined: Fri Jul 09, 2010 10:49 am

Re: Ever had an insulin pump on the playa?

Postby BAS » Wed Aug 03, 2011 8:55 am

We're both State Employees here in Wisconsin, so we're not certain what to expect in the immediate future. (If anyone wants to put a curse on Governor Scott Walker, by all means, feel free to do so. Bonus points for cursing ALEC, as well.)

Thanks again.
"Nothing is withheld from us which we have conceived to do.
Do things that have never been done."
--Russell Kirsch
User avatar
BAS
 
Posts: 4220
Joined: Sun Apr 18, 2004 7:46 pm
Location: Wisconsin
Burning Since: 2006


Return to Q & A Tips and Tricks

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests