From Buffalo, New York, USA:
I am interested in learning how one would evaluate whether the insulin pump is appropriate for a 12 year old girl with Type 1 diabetes. Have there been any studies that indicate the benefits or problems resulting from the use of the pump with children at this age? Any help you could give would be much appreciated.
This question was referred to several members of the Diabetes Team, who have each given an answer:
Answer from Dr. O'Brien:In this Center the most important consideration would be whether she was already in very good control on some form of intensive insulin therapy by injection. If she is, then the additional flexibility offered by a pump may not yet be needed; if she is not, a pump is probably not going to help. Another consideration is that pumps may be a nuisance to someone who is an athlete where there is body contact or swimming.
Answer from Dr. Songini:In Italy we are not using pumps in young adolescents since we introduced intensified insulin treatment regimens along with NHS giving free home glucose monitoring equipment and pens obtaining same good results. Pumps are seldom used except in pregnancy and really brittle diabetic patients.
Answer from Stephanie Schwartz, diabetes nurse specialist:If she's already doing well, why change? The pump requires a lot of decision-making and intensive monitoring to be of optimal benefit. A 12 year-old may find it much too complex.
Original posting 4 Jul 97
Last Updated: Tuesday April 06, 2010 15:08:54
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