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Comparison between Insulin Pump Therapy and Injections in Controlling Diabetes

Insulin Pump Improves and Prevents Complications

 

Research Question: Is insulin pump therapy more effective in controlling diabetes and preventing complications compared to multiple daily injections?

Diabetes Management

Managing diabetes can be very challenging because it requires commitment and adherence to doctor’s instructions. Diabetes patients are also required to follow a strict diet to enable them to manage their blood sugar. Since diabetes is a lifelong disease, people who are diagnosed with diabetes must live with it for the rest of their lives. Living with diabetes is challenging because it can be frustrating and stressful, but with an excellent diabetes education, treatment, diet, and exercise, a patient is able to effectively manage diabetes and enjoy life. On the contrary, a patient who refuses to follow instructions will certainly develop serious and life-threatening complications (Diabetes – Symptoms and causes, 2018).

Insulin Pump Therapy

Insulin Pump is a small device that is connected to the human body through an infusion set. The device is programmed to deliver small doses of insulin to the body continuously. The small and continuous doses of insulin are referred to as a basal rate which accounts for 50% of the insulin being delivered (Diabetes Self-Management, 2018). An Insulin pump is a small computerized device used by diabetes patients to manage and control their blood sugar. This device can be put on a belt clip. The process by which an insulin pump is used to infuse insulin into diabetics who are type 1 is called an insulin pump therapy (Heinemann et al., 2015, p.1).

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There are two major categories of insulin pumps. The traditional pump is one that comes with a reservoir, a tube, and an infusion set. The infusion set is attached to the body and connected to the tube which is attached to the pump. The traditional pump delivers small does of insulin on a continuous basis. The other type of pump is called the Insulin Patch pump. This one has a reservoir and infusion set built in a small case. These pumps are programmed on a separate device with wireless capabilities.

The Benefits of Insulin Pump Therapy

Controlling diabetes can be challenging because it requires dedication and commitment. One of the reasons why most people switch to insulin pump therapy is because of uncontrolled blood sugar. Even though it is difficult to manage diabetes, but with an insulin pump therapy, the benefits are tremendous. According to a study that was done, the use of an insulin pump leads to an improved A1c and it also reduces the risk of complications. (Phillip, 2007)

Insulin Pump Therapy is a process by which a fast-acting insulin is used to deliver 24/7 insulin coverage. For a continuous delivery of insulin, diabetes patients are required to fill the pump with insulin. After filling the pump reservoir for a few days, the patient is ready to receive a continuous supply of insulin to the body. This advanced process of insulin delivery brings a peace of mind to the patient because he or she does not have to worry about injecting insulin. Insulin pumps are smart devices that can be integrated with another smart device called the Dexcom G6 (Dexcom, 2018). This device comes with a built-in technology that prevents patients from a fingerstick. The Dexcom G6 consists of a sensor, transmitter, and a receiver. Life is better for people with diabetes when they use the insulin pump along with the Dexcom G6 because, with these combined smart devices, the patient will not experience hypoglycemia which is dangerous.

Rationale

Diabetes is one of the leading causes of death in the United States and other parts of the world because it leads to complications if not properly managed. It is a lifelong disease that causes people to have too much glucose in their blood. Type 1 and Type 2 are the two main types of diabetes that affect people in the United States and the world at large. These two types of diabetes are different with respect to their conditions but they both can be deadly if a patient fails to take his or her medications on time and follow a proper diet. There is another form of diabetes called gestation diabetes. This type of diabetes is commonly found in people who are pregnant.  Researches have proven in studies that a well-managed blood glucose prevents major complications. Doctors and nurses have also linked diabetes to other diseases that can easily cause the death of a patient (Diabetes – Symptoms and causes 2018).

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The use of an Insulin pump has proven to have tremendous benefits due to its automation and predictability. According to the experts at Accu-Chek, a pump therapy makes it quite easy for people with diabetes because of its convenience. Diabetes patients who are struggling to manage or control blood sugar find it beneficial when they switch to insulin pump therapy. With the pump therapy, there will be no need to worry about unexpected hypoglycemia or hyperglycemia (Diabetes – Symptoms and causes 2018).

One of the reasons blood sugar goes up is because of what diabetes patients eat. When a patient is on a regular fast acting insulin injection and a long-acting insulin injection, managing blood sugar can be challenging because the patient must check after every two hours. With the insulin pump, every patient has the freedom to eat because each pump has a programming capability to match the number of carbohydrates in the food.

Many diabetes patients experience high blood sugar during the night due to what is termed growth hormones. Waking up in the morning with high blood sugar shows that a patient does not have a good control. When one is on insulin injection, it is difficult to have normal blood sugar readings in the morning because insulin injection cannot be programmed. Unlike the injection, the insulin pump therapy with its programmable capability gives the patient enough insulin that normalizes the blood sugar in the morning. (Diabetes – Symptoms and causes 2018)

Insulin Pumps are specifically for people who struggle to maintain stable blood sugar. According to a journal article from the Indiana School of medicine, the quality of life improves for children who switched from insulin injection to the insulin pump therapy. One of the reasons diabetes patients use insulin Pump is because it gives children and adults the ability to be able to adjust the pump to their individual needs. (Diabetes – Symptoms and causes 2018)

According to a study that was conducted and posted in the Indian Journal of Endocrinology and Metabolism, insulin pump helps to improve the quality of life of patients. The study also proves that with the insulin pump, diabetes patients see significant progress with respect to their physical health. The study also proves that with an insulin pump, there will be less stress, excellent mood, flexibility, and ease of travel. Moreover, patients who are using the insulin pump are in a better position to interact with family members and other people in a social gathering.  (Ghazanfar et al 2016)

Conclusion

Many people are struggling to control their blood sugar with injections, diet, and exercise. While it is true that many people are using injections to control blood sugar, those who have decided to go the route of insulin therapy are reaping the benefits of an improved A1c. Insulin pump therapy is more effective in controlling diabetes and preventing complications compared to multiple daily injections Diabetes patients who used insulin pump also stand a better chance of preventing major complications according to researchers.

References

  • Accu-Chek. (2018, October 31). Top 12 Reasons Pumping Leads to a Better Life. Retrieved from https://www.accu-chekarabia.com/en/pump-therapy/top-12-reasons-pumping-leads-better-life
  • Alsaleh, F. M., Smith, F. J., & Taylor, K. M. (2011). Experiences of children/young people and their parents, using insulin pump therapy for the management of type 1 diabetes: qualitative review. Journal of Clinical Pharmacy and Therapeutics, 37(2), 140-147. doi:10.1111/j.1365-2710.2011.01283.x
  • Blount, A. M., & Largay, J. (2011). Insulin Pump Therapy for the Patient With Diabetes. Clinician Reviews, 21(11), 26–31. Retrieved from https://akin.css.edu/login?url=http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=aph&AN=67360034&site=ehost-live&scope=site
  • Diabetes – Symptoms and causes. (2018, August 8). Retrieved from https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/diabetes/symptoms-causes/syc-20371444
  • Ghazanfar, H., Rizvi, S., Khurram, A., Orooj, F., & Qaiser, I. (2016). Impact of insulin pump on quality of life of diabetic patients. Indian Journal of Endocrinology and Metabolism, 20(4), 506. doi:10.4103/2230-8210.183472
  • Heinemann, L., Fleming, G. A., Petrie, J. R., Holl, R. W., Bergenstal, R. M., & Peters, A. L. (2015). Insulin Pump Risks and Benefits: A Clinical Appraisal of Pump Safety Standards, Adverse Event Reporting, and Research Needs. Diabetes Care, dc150168. doi:10.2337/dc15-0168
  • Karges, B., Schwandt, A., Heidtmann, B., Kordonouri, O., Binder, E., Schierloh, U., … Holl, R. W. (2017). Association of Insulin Pump Therapy vs Insulin Injection Therapy With Severe Hypoglycemia, Ketoacidosis, and Glycemic Control Among Children, Adolescents, and Young Adults With Type 1 Diabetes. JAMA, 318(14), 1358. doi:10.1001/jama.2017.13994
  • Nelson, G. A., Bertrang, J. A., Gall, K. M., & Edwards, E. (2009). Patterns of Youths’ Glycemic Control with Insulin Pump Therapy. Pediatric Nursing, 35(4), 234–239. Retrieved from https://akin.css.edu/login?url=http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=aph&AN=43799636&site=ehost-live&scope=site
  • Olohan, K., & Zappitelli, D. (2003). The Insulin Pump. AJN, American Journal of Nursing, 103(4), 48-56. Retrieved from https://akin.css.edu/login?url=http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=aph&AN=9530421&site=ehost-live&scope=site
  • Phillip, M., Battelino, T., Rodriguez, H., Danne, T., & Kaufman, F. (2007). Use of Insulin Pump Therapy in the Pediatric Age-Group. Diabetes Care, 30(6), 1653-1662. doi:10.2337/dc07-9922
  • Sherr, J., & Tamborlane, W. V. (2008). Past, Present, and Future of Insulin Pump Therapy: Better Shot At Diabetes Control. Mount Sinai Journal of Medicine, 75(4), 352–361.. Retrieved from https://doi-org.akin.css.edu/10.1002/msj.20055
  • Sullivan-Bolyai, S., Knafl, K., Tamborlane, W., & Grey, M. (2004). Parents’ Reflections on Managing Their Children’s Diabetes With Insulin Pumps. Journal of Nursing Scholarship, 36(4), 316-323. doi:10.1111/j.1547-5069.2004.04058.x
  • Tołwińska, J., Głowińska-Olszewska, B., & Bossowski, A. (2013). Insulin Therapy with Personal Insulin Pumps and Early Angiopathy in Children with Type 1 Diabetes Mellitus. Mediators of Inflammation, 2013, 1-7. doi:10.1155/2013/791283

 



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