An Insulin Pumps is a small computerized device that delivers insulin in two ways:
1. In a steady measured and continuous dose (the "basal" insulin)
2. As a surge ("bolus") dose, at your direction, around mealtime.
Doses are delivered through a flexible plastic tube called a cannula. With the aid of a small needle, the cannula is inserted through the skin into the subcutaneous tissue and is taped in place. The insulin pump is not an artificial pancreas (because you still have to monitor your blood glucose level), but pumps can help most people achieve better control, and many people prefer this continuous system of insulin delivery over injections. Pumps can be programmed to releases small doses of insulin continuously (basal), or a bolus dose close to mealtime to control the rise in blood glucose after a meal. This delivery system most closely mimics the body's normal release of insulin as in people without diabetes.
There is very good evidence from adult and pediatric studies that insulin pump therapy does achieve better glucose control than conventional once-or twice-daily insulin injection regimens. We know from the Diabetes Control and Complications Trial (DCCT) that improved glucose control is associated with significant lowering of the risk of developing the long-term complications of diabetes. During DCCT, intensive insulin therapy in people with type 1 diabetes significantly reduced HbA1c relative to those receiving conventional treatment. The intensively treated group achieved a mean HbA1c of 7.1%, while the conventionally treated patients had HbA1c of approximately 9.0%. Intensive treatment reduced the risk of the development of retinopathy by 76% and microalbuminuria by 34% compared with conventional therapy.
Intensive insulin therapy in people with type 2 diabetes, called Kumamoto study has shown similar research results. Intensively treated group achieved better blood glucose control [HbA1c] than the conventionally treated patients. Intensive treatment reduced the risk of developing retinopathy by 68% and nephropathy by 74% compared with conventional therapy. There are increasing demands for more aggressive treatment for type 2 diabetes patients. And the American Diabetes Association (ADA) and Canadian Diabetes Association (CDA) recommend more aggressive treatment for type 2 diabetes patients. Early intensive insulin treatment has become a new trend for type 2 diabetes patients. Early intensive treatment means that the type 2 diabetes patient will be treated with insulin which is most physiologic treatment method. And early intensive treatment means a proactive action “act before failure.” And starting intensive treatment as soon as possible “from the diagnosis day” gives a better chance of beta cell function recovery. So insulin pump therapy for type 2 diabetes patients has three benefits.
Insulin pump therapy allows you to set a vasal fate, or background insulin, to be delivered continuously throughout the day and night for the normal body functions. When you eat you can then give a bolus, or delivery of insulin burst, “on demand” With the insulin pump, you can get your insulin levels as close as possible to the way normal pancreas would produce.