Insulin pumps

Insulin pumps

Preparation and Documentation

If you’re using a pump, alongside your prescription you should carry the details of the company that manufactured your pump and the consumables you use, as the company may need to be contacted if anything happens to your pump.

You should also keep a note of all your pump settings, as this will let you know your doses in case your pump breaks or gets stolen and you need to use injectable insulin again. This can sometimes be downloaded directly from your pump using the device settings.

You could get in touch with your pump company before you go, as some companies are happy to provide a spare “holiday” pump in case your own pump gets damaged or stolen.

At the Airport

If you have an insulin pump, be aware that most manufacturers tell you to avoid radiation sources, such as those used in body scanners and X-rays.

Your doctor’s letter should include a statement that your pump can’t go through screening. Some airports may ask you to consider removing your pump and using injectable insulin while travelling. However, you should never have to disconnect your pump at security.

It is a good idea to contact the airport or airline you’re flying with and notify them that you wear a pump. They may have additional documentation for you to fill in or an alternate screening method for you to go through.

Extra Kit

You should also carry anything you need for your Pump Failure Plan. This includes insulin pens (with long-and short-acting insulin) so that you can go back to giving yourself subcutaneous injections if necessary.

If you use a pump or continuous glucose monitor, you should also think about how the weather or other conditions at your destination could affect your infusion or adhesion site.

If you’re going somewhere warm you might sweat more, and so you might want to bring something that will help the adhesive stick! This could be a solid antiperspirant, a sticky substance (e.g. Skin Tac or Mastisol) or medical tape to help keep your set in place. Remember to keep the skin clean at the point of insertion though, as applying any product to this area could damage your cannula or sensor, resulting in inaccurate readings or dosing.

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