All you need to know about the V-Go

We rarely hear from people who say they love taking insulin daily. Many dislike it because they have a fear of needles or pain (which can also cause people to delay starting on insulin). Others simply find it annoying or frustrating – especially when you’re eating out or you forget to take your insulin pen with you.

If this sounds like you, then read on. The new V-Go Insulin Patch Pump may help make your life easier.

What is the V-Go Insulin Patch Pump?

The V-Go Insulin Patch Pump is an all-in-one insulin delivery system which is worn as a patch. It contains all the insulin you need for 24 hours. This means you do not need to carry insulin pens and needles around with you throughout the day.

The patch is applied at the same time every day.  You choose the time of day when it’s most convenient to you to apply the patch, for example after your morning shower, and then stick to this time consistently. The patch can be worn on a variety of locations on your body, including your arm, abdomen, back or thigh. There is no programming, tubes, wires or alarms associated with it.

How it works

The pump uses only fast acting insulin. If you are currently using long acting insulin such as Lantus or Levemir and a fast acting insulin such as Novorapid or Humalog you may be wondering how this device can help you. It works by delivering insulin in two ways:

  1. Basal (background) insulin. Tiny pre-set amounts of rapid acting insulin are trickled constantly throughout the 24 hours.
  2. Bolus (e.g. mealtime) insulin. When it is time to eat (or when you need additional insulin) you are able to administer extra insulin by clicking the button on the pump to cover the carbohydrates you are going to eat with your meal. Each click of the button delivers two units of insulin. These clicks can be made through your clothes which makes eating at restaurants far more easy and discrete. The maximum total bolus insulin available per day is 36 units of insulin.

Note: If you generally use more insulin than this per day for meals then the V-Go may not work for you.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of using the V-Go?

Advantages:

  • Only one injection a day is needed rather than multiple daily injections
  • No need to carry insulin pens or syringes
  • Can shower and do all your regular activities while wearing the pump
  • Waterproof up to 1 metre for 24 hours
  • Simple to use – no batteries or programming involved
  • Discrete. People often say they are embarrassed about giving insulin when dining out and having to carry their insulin supplies, with the V-Go insulin patch pump the insulin is contained in the patch which you wear on your body
  • Three different insulin dosing options available

Disadvantages:

  • May not be suitable for everybody – please discuss with your health professional to assess individual suitability
  • Training needs to be provided by your healthcare professional prior to first time use, so all orders will be sent to your health care team
  • Cost. Currently a 30 day pack will cost you $250 and there is no subsidy available

If you think that the V-Go may be a good option for you, more information can be obtained by:

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