Monday, December 9, 2013

Double the basal, double the fun. Not.

It was a lovely Thanksgiving afternoon.  Turkey et al had been consumed, insulin bolused, and the kiddos were outside playing a rousing game of soccer.

The adults were still gathered around the table, digesting our meal when it happened; the long, continuous screech of death which tells you diabetes has decided to screw with your holiday.

As I jumped to my feet, I realized that it was not possible for me to be hearing Elise's pod, since she was outside.  Either I had developed the hearing of an owl or the PDM was the source.  Sure enough; PDM error.  Still sucky, just not as sucky as a pod failure.

For you non-podders (or podders who have never encountered this), when you get a PDM error, the pod will continue to deliver the basal, even though the PDM (once reset) won't recognize the pod that is being worn.  This was great because we were a ways off from dessert, and I didn't want to interupt Elise's soccer game.

I reset the PDM, and when Elise came inside, we changed her pod.  As per our usual routine, she left the old pod on until we could put baby oil on the adhesive to get it off.

The rest of the evening, Elise hovered on the low side.  I ran negative temp basals, bolused for half of more pie, and still she remained stayed low-ish (80s - according to the CGM).

When we got home, I turned off her basal entirely; since we had been free-basing smarties the whole ride home.  I think her basal stayed off for almost three hours.  She came up to about 100.  I was worried about ketones developing (since she wasn't receiving any insulin), so I turned on her basal at 50%.  She went low again.

That night, Fred and I were up checking her almost every 30 minutes.  We alternated between turning off/down her basal and giving her carbs. I was flummoxed... how could she be receiving no insulin, eating smarties and her BG still go DOWN?

Any pod people care to chime in here?

Finally at 6:00 am, I sat bolt upright in bed after just laying down from a BG check and subsequent smartie-feeding.  I yelled, "THE OLD POD!  IT'S THE OLD POD!  IT'S STILL DELIVERING BASAL INSULIN!!!"  I ran to Elise's room, turned the basal off completely on the new pod and gave Elise 12g of yogurt.  Finally, she rose above 100 and stayed there.

Remember this picture from this post a few days ago?  That was this night.

The funny thing is, right before I woke up to check her at 6:00 am, I had a dream that Fred and I were driving down a highway and passed two factories right next to each other.  The factories were somewhat dome-like and both had chimneys with smoke rising from each one.  I remarked to Fred how strange it was to see smoke from both chimneys, because usually there was smoke from one or the other; not both at the same time.

Looks like Lenny and Harold are alive and well. Maybe next time guys, help me figure out my mistake a little earlier, mmmkay?


  1. Um...oops! (P.S. LOL at Freebasing Smarties!)

  2. OMG. I didn't even think of it until you said she had two pods on. Glad you figured it out, but sorry it sucked so.

  3. Omg! I would never imagine it would continue delivery with a new pod activated!? Really!?

  4. Call me dumb, but how was the old pod still delivering the basal if it had been de-activated to put on the new one? This is scary and I'd like to understand in case we encounter the issue...

    1. This only happens if you get a PDM error and need to reset it. Since the PDM has been reset, it no longer recognizes that there is an active pod. Since the old pod was never deactivated, it will go on its merry way, delivering the basal until the 80 (+8) hours is up and then it will begin to screech at you.

      When the problem is with the pod itself, you will know it has stopped delivering insulin because there will be a error message on the PDM telling you.

      We haven't had PDM errors happen very often... I think this was our third on in over two years (and two of them were with the same PDM which had issues).

      Hope that clears it up!

  5. glad y'all figured it out and put an end to the madness. I giggled at the "free basing smarties" line. I shouldn't have but it makes sense when diabetes is riding shot gun.


Comment moderation now in effect because of jerky comment spammers.

Now please leave your message after the beep.