Keeping your insulin pump cannula or needle in place can be tricky. Exercise, swimming, restrictive clothing, and perspiration can cause some adhesives to fail or slide. Fortunately there are some proven methods of securing your infusion set that are easy.
Follow these tips and while some may not work for you, we hope that if you try them, perhaps you will find more success keeping your infusion set in place:
- Preparation. Clean your skin with a non perfumed simple soap. Avoid lotions and anything that coats the skin or clogs the pores. It can make it harder for tape to adhere to the skin.
- Skin Prep or no Skin Prep. Skin prep makes flesh sticky and can lead to tears for those with thin skin, or may lead to adverse reactions when removing the tape. Those with sensitive skin will want to avoid it, while others may find success. A simpler and more skin friendly option is to find a thin, flexible, and conforming tape to affix the infusion set to the skin.
- Sometimes body hair is a problem, because the infusion set tends to stick better to the hair than to the skin. You can shave the area where the infusion set will be placed. If shaving irritates the skin, simply trim the hair down to stubble.
- Using medical tape is also helpful. Hy-Tape is latex free, thin, conforming, and UPF50+. Frame the tape around the edges of the infusion set and press it down to form a seal. Once a seal has been made, Hy-Tape is waterproof and when applied to clean skin with no skin prep it will hold in moist environments.
- Change location. Some areas of your skin are better than other for sticking an infusion set. Tubing may get caught on waistbands, be around pockets and in some areas be easily caught on objects.
- Give your tube some slack. Create a safety loop. Consider taping a small loop of tubing behind the infusion set so that if the tube becomes caught, it will pull the loop free and not the infusion set.
There are many great resources that outline the different taping methods. Medtronics is a great resource with some detailed methods for insertion site management.
Hy-Tape is a thin, conforming, latex free tape. Patients and caregivers recommend Hy-Tape because it is waterproof and releases gently so to not irritate skin. The zinc-oxide infused adhesive is soothing on areas where repeat applications may be needed.
Do you have sensitive skin? Would you like to try Hy-Tape. Click here to request a free sample and please reference this article so we know the correct tape sample for your application.