Tuesday, June 29, 2010


First off, I'd like to say that I know that Obsessive Compulsive Disorder is a serious condition. I don't have it, and I truly feel for those who are effected by it.

Secondly, I'll say that there are certain aspects of my life where I can go completely OCD.

Most of the time I'm a totally disorganized person. My apartment is almost never completely clean. My desk at work is often a disaster. My purse...well, let's just say you don't want to try to find something in it.

But when it comes to site changes and rotation, I can be somewhat obsessive compulsive about it. I wear my CGMS sensor in my thighs. I can usually get 6 to 7 days out of a sensor. Infusion sites are in upper and lower stomach, arm, and upper buttocks.

I used to use only my stomach for infusion sites. I tried my thighs, but found that absorption was not what I wanted it to be, so I pretty much stayed exclusively with my stomach. A few endo visits ago, my doctor strongly encouraged me to find new areas to use. I knew that I needed to anyway. I've heard too many stories about those who have so much scar tissue built up that they have trouble with absorption.

So I branched out. I tried my upper buttocks first. I liked it. It was out of the line of my pants, so I didn't have to worry about irritating a site. Absorption was decent. And it was an area I could reach with very little trouble.

Then I tried my arm. This was an area that required some forethought. I had to purchase a separate box of infusion sets. I primarily use the 23" Quick-Sets. But with an arm site, I knew I'd need more tubing. So when I placed my new supply order, I ordered one box of the 43" Quick-Sets. And I discovered I LOVE using my arm for a site. It's my new favorite, actually.

Here's where my OCD comes in. My pump and sensor really need to be on the same side, in order to get a good signal. So I put my sensor in my left thigh. This will get me through 2 infusion sites. Usually I use my upper and lower stomach. After this, I switch sides for my sensor and then use my upper and lower stomach on the other side as well. Another sensor, back on the left side, and I use my upper buttocks and my arm. A sensor back on the right, and infusion sites go on my upper buttock and arm on that side as well.

By my calculations, this allows 21 days between infusion sites, give or take a day or two. Basically, I'm giving each infusion site around 3 weeks to heal before I have to use it again.

I can't say the same for the sensor sites. But for now, I've not had too much trouble with them.

It totally annoys me when I get off my sensor/infusion schedule. And it happened to me this past couple of weeks. It was a combination of a site that I ripped out of my arm on accident by running into a door frame (my momma always said she should have named me Grace) and trying to get a few extra days out of a sensor because I was running low.

Today is the first day that makes sense. I am back on track. A new sensor in my right thigh. A new infusion set in my upper right stomach. Whew.

Does anyone else have something OCD that they do when dealing with their diabetes? Maybe a specific time you test? Or a ritual before you change pump sites? Come on guys....don't make me feel like a total freak. :P


Anonymous said...

The only thing I can think of that I kind of pay attention to is trying to time my battery replacement with a new reservoir so that they both show as "full" on my display.

Karen said...

Oh, I'm OCD about so very many things - it drives Pete crazy!!! I actually do the same exact thing with my sites / sensors. I hate when I have to change one our early or something and it throws off my perfectly timed schedule. :)

SarahK said...

I'm OCD about where and how my supplies are kept. I will re-organize and re-organize until things "make sense" when they are needed.. pre-laid out, step by step, just in their boxes and organized by type into drawers.

Cherise said...

I am OCD when I eat. I am on a schedule that I pretty much like to stay on. I eat breakfast before 6 during week days, before 9 on weekends. I eat a snack around 9:30 during the weekdays, no snack during the weekend because I usually eat a late breakfast. Dinner..I have to eat before 7. Great post. I promise you aren't the only OCD PWD.