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Feeling the Burn.

Handy way to hide an insulin pump - sock it to me!In the winter months, one of my favorite places to stash the pump is in my sock.  (Need a visual?  Here you go.)  When the infusion set is in my leg, the tubing is just long enough to feed down into my sock and rest quietly against my shin bone.

This worked out fine for years and then my old Minimed 512 died on me.  (On my 21st diabetes anniversary, oddly enough.)  Quick work by the Minimed reps had my new and improved Minimed 522 at my doorstep the next day. 

The new pump looks a lot like the old one, but it had one significant update:  my blood sugar results from my One Touch UltraLink were sent directly to my pump.  I test, the result would show up on the meter screen, and a second later, it would beeeep up on the screen of my pump.

But I've noticed this weird thing over the past few months:  When I remove my pump from my sock at the end of a work day, there's a red irritation.  At first, I thought it was just the mark of my pump against my skin (sometimes I can see the imprint of the buttons when my socks are too tight).   It's not a burn so much as a pink raised irritation. 

Then it dawned on me:  I'm sending electrical signals to my pump.  I'm frying my skin with every blood sugar test that pings through the ether.  (I have the most sensitive skin on the planet, it seems.)

And then it made me think - there's a lot of infrared bits going about in my day-to-day.  Whenever I have the Dexcom receiver above my  head, I wonder if the transmittal waves are beaming through my brain.  When I have my body between my meter and my pump, I wonder what cells of mine are being zipped through to transmit those results.   Between diabetes technological bits, my cell phone, and all the other waves being generated by our savvy society, I have to wonder how much of it is embedding itself into my body.

Paranoid?  Oh sure - but curious about this, too.  Do I need to start wearing a tin foil hat

To be honest, I'm so burnt out this morning from a low at 5:30 am that I can't think in normal thought patterns today.  I'm back to my Siah in the banana mind-chaos.  (I think I need a bit of a break.  Looking forward to spending this coming weekend hiding from the Internet at a bed and breakfast.) 

But seriously - is anyone else using the sock trick from time to time with their Minimed 722 or 522?  And are you getting that weird little red burn?  I have to know if I'm the only one.  Because if I am, I may need to shove myself into a banana and get my brain in order. 

Comments

I think we need to see a picture of you wearing a tin foil hat in a banana to really figure out what is going on.

My pump is almost always in my pocket or clipped at the waistline so I am of no REAL help. Crazy skin though!!

"I wonder if the transmittal waves are beaming through my brain."

Nice try. We are not buying the waves in my brain made me write that defense.

It is all you.

LOL

I don't feel the burn...but I don't use the sock trick, and I don't use the UltraLink. I have the MiniMed CGM and the UltraLink meter doesn't work properly when you're using the MiniMed CGM. Reason? Every BG sent to the pump calibrates the sensor. This is a BAD idea. Why MiniMed set it up this way, I have no idea...

Anyhow, I do get a lot of red irritation in my skin from the sensor. Does the Dexcom irritate your skin? How long do you wear one sensor? I keep trying different kinds of tape...but my skin gets really irritated after a while. Not burning so much as itchy...

I USE the sock trick often and have never had a burn or red spot.

Weird stuff and I have a foil hat I can send you. I keep plenty around.

They have done numerous studies on ham radio operators and short of putting our hands in our rigs when we are actually transmitting, no injuries or cancer has resulted.

And we can run some really high power!

I started using your sock trick after I read about it in one of your posts. I've only used it a few times, but I definitely understand your "burn."

I have EXTREMELY sensitive skin (as in, I can only use 1 specific type of lotion/soap, cocunut products dry my skin out, I itch randomly like a cat with fleas, and so on). I've found if the buttons are facing my skin, the irritation is lessened. You can also try putting a baby sock over it while it's in your sock (frumpy, I know!).

I've thought about the waves roaming around me with the technology too. The constant "bzzz" of the pump/sensor reminds me of that (and I'm not talking vibrations).

I use your sock trick too. I have noticed that I get a red rash-mark thing but I figured it was nothing more than irritation due to the skin not being able to breathe and possibly irritation at a chunk of plastic being stuck against my leg all day.

I really don't think it is from electrical signals, otherwise I think it would make sense for the mark to show up any time it sat in my pocket with only a thin piece of material between the pump and my skin.

It happens when I wear a pump under my dress...I never thought of it that way though :(

I am coming up on my 21st anniversary for my diabetes on Feb 14. I like to call it my re-birthday. I hope my pump does not die!! I do not store my pump in my sock so I can't relate, but I would probably burn if I did because I have super sensitive and very pale skin. I can't use I.V. prep because I break out in hives.

I had that happen with my (Minimed) transmitter once when I kept the same sensor going for a long time during the summer. It looked like a burn, but it didn't go away.(TMI WARNING) I found out it was actually a fungal issue - disgusting, I know. This probably isn't what's going on since I assume your pump's in the same spot 24/7 - but if it doesn't go away maybe try putting some clotramidazole on it.

I didn't know that you did it, but for church, I put my 522 in my pantyhose on the inside of my left thigh close to the knee. I don't use the Ultra-link though, but sometimes my skin is rather sticky after taking pump out.

I have an Animas OneTouch Ping, but I do use the sock often, especially during the work day. The meter and pump communicate via RF, just like yours, and I've never noticed any redness or irritation. Maybe I'll have to pay closer attention, hmmmm.

it is SO all part of being bionic!
i'm on the omnipod, which communicates (i assume) in a similar way with the pdm (personal diabetes manager), but i've never had a burn where the pod was placed.

Is the redness at the transmitter end of the pump - arrows? As Ryan says it does use RF and the levels are suppose to be within strict safety limits, and are probably quite low, as communication over long distances is not required. I suppose anything is possible, but look at something else first.

You could turn off the comms between the BG Link Meter and pump - even thou it kind of defeats the purpose.

Is the redness at the transmitter end of the pump - arrows? As Ryan says it does use RF and the levels are suppose to be within strict safety limits, and are probably quite low, as communication over long distances is not required. I suppose anything is possible, but look at something else first.

You could turn off the comms between the BG Link Meter and pump - even thou it kind of defeats the purpose.

I have used the in the sock placement but have not had any Skin Redness from it. I would AssUme that the redness would be from the plastic that is directly up against your skin. You could try and place a barrier in between your pump and skin. The reason I don’t have this problem is because I am a 47 year old man with hairy legs. So you may want to go European and not shave your legs. I hear it also will help hold up your socks.
Serious about the plastic though. (22 years Juvenile Diabetic / 9 years on pump).
Lee

Kerri, I'd bet it has more to do with the label on the back of the pump than anything else. Maybe MM changed the formula in the days since the 512. Does your skin get irritated by tagless labels on shirts, bras, and such?

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