Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Five Days Later - Holding Steady

I've been Dexy now for five full days. Five showers (six actually). Five sleeps. Five days of clothes rubbing against him.

I like him - even more than I thought I might. I cannot believe how easily I forget he's attached to me. I don't feel him. He doesn't get caught on things. The lack of tubing coming out of him certainly helps but I still never thought I'd say that a hard plastic thing sticking out of me would be comfy.

It is.

He's been put to a few tests already. He survived four games of curling. One on Friday night and three on Saturday. Curling involves a lot of squatting and crouching which moves ones torso in odd ways sometimes. It also involves a lot of bending over a broom sweeping madly while running full tilt down the ice. Oh, and it's freakin' freezing out there!

The site and the transmitter held up just fine despite the numerous times I could have caught it on a broom handle or swept the darn thing right off. My receiver stayed tucked in my vest pocked and survived the numerous hot/cold/hot/cold temperature changes. He also did a super job of keeping me informed on how I was doing as I had never curled so much in one day before. I checked every few ends and didn't have to worry about going low at a game-changing moment.

The problem with our busy weekend was that there was no time to get a run or a swim in. So, other than curling, Dexter didn't get any workouts in during his first few days.

Yesterday morning, I headed back to the pool for my regular workout. I left the receive in my locker since it's not at all waterproof and I didn't want to risk it getting wet. As for the transmitter and sensor - well I decided to swim like I normally would because I needed to know if they could hack it. We did a speed/distance set with lots of 200m and 300m fast swims that ended with 8x25m sprints going full tilt.

He hung on just fine - thank goodness. In fact I kept feeling to make sure he was still there. I fully expected to spot my transmitter lying at the bottom of the pool by the end.

I showered and headed off to work. At the end of the day, I pull back my shirt and noticed that the edges of the sticky area were no longer sticky and they were starting to peel back a bit. That often happens to my pump site on the last day but I never worry about it because I know it's coming off soon. It's another story with Monsieur Dex as I'm hoping to drag every second I can out of every single site - especially if they are behaving as well as this one is.

So we pulled out the IV 3000 (the sticky dressing used to hold IVs on). Doug cut a hole in the centre and placed it on to hold the site in place.

I've learned that IV 3000 doesn't survive showers well but does ok otherwise. So, by the time you read this, I will have sleep on the site for another night, I will have run 8k with it on, showered and, if needed, put a new IV 3000 on to hold Dex to me for another day.

I'm guessing this is not a long-term solution because I'd rather not be going through these things daily. I also don't love the IV 3000 because my skin doesn't breathe well with it and gets red and itchy pretty quickly.

If anyone has discovered any other products that hold infusion sites or Dex sensors in place, that breathe a little better, and that can also withstand the rigours of an active lifestyle (pool/run/curl etc) - I'd love to know.


  1. I'm a super-big (I mean HUGE) fan of Tegaderm. I find it holds my CGM sensor/transmitter on much better than IV-3000. Medtronic will sell it to you, but it's cheaper on Amazon. (At least in the US, it is.)

  2. Hi Celine - for swimming or a long shower try an Opsite post-op 10 x 12 cm dressing - Tegaderm do a similar one, the 3589 +Pad - you can order them online or from your pharmacy - they cost around CAN$ 1.50, but it stops the sensor sticky tape getting wet. If the edges start peeling Opsite flexifix roll tape is great - it's waterproof and you can cut small strips just to cover the edges. Best wishes, Ian.