Insulin Dosing Options Beyond an Insulin Pump: V-Go
Taking insulin for type 2 diabetes can be a lot of work. But there are options that may potentially make life a little easier for you.
You may have heard of at least one of those options - an insulin pump. However, I’d venture a bet that you may not have heard of a V-Go.
What is a V-Go insulin pump?
Here’s a quick overview of what V-Gos can offer:
A V-Go is a disposable insulin delivery device that gives you a continuous amount of insulin throughout the day and night. It also allows you to give yourself a dose of insulin at meals. Think of it as a very simple insulin pump. The device sticks to your skin with adhesive and a small needle sits under your skin to allow insulin to flow into your body. V-Gos are replaced every 24 hours.1
Reduces number of needle sticks
Similar to insulin pumps, V-Gos can reduce the number of needle-pokes you get, from 4-5 a day to just one.1 It also makes it easier to be spontaneous and flexible with your schedule (your insulin is always with you and you can dose when you need to). You can be discrete when you dose at meals or snacks as well — no need for prepping syringes or pens.
Another advantage of V-Gos is they are typically affordable, overall. An added benefit is that they only use rapid-acting insulin to give you all-day coverage as well as mealtime coverage.1 That potentially means cost savings as you’ll only need to purchase one type of insulin, instead of two.
The learning curve
While V-Gos are simple to use, there is a little bit of a learning curve for you and your physician when you get started. That’s because V-Gos have a variety of reservoir sizes, each holding different amounts of insulin. So, your V-Go needs to be fitted to your insulin needs. Additionally, the V-Go delivers meal doses in increments of 2 units, thus meal time doses are referred to as “clicks.” Your physician will ask you to take a certain number of “clicks” at each meal, versus a certain number of units (as you may be used to).1
These learning curves are not impossible to overcome. It just takes a willing partnership between you and your provider! In my professional opinion, it’s worth the effort if you’re a candidate for a V-Go.
Other considerations with V-Go insulin pumps
One thing to consider, because V-Gos are limited on how much they hold or deliver, you can outgrow them (for lack of a better word). That means, there may become a point where your insulin needs increase or require more flexibility than the V-Go can provide.
Also, you’ll need to wear the device 24/7 and it can be a little bulky. Finding ways to place it on your body where it doesn’t get in the way, but also allows your dose, may be a challenge. And, you’ll need a backup plan in case it malfunctions or gets disconnected from your body. Typically, a backup plan includes carrying V-Go supplies, insulin, and syringes with you.
Overall, V-Gos are a great option for reducing the burden of multiple daily injections of insulin. You can look up more information on V-Gos on their webpage.
Have you experienced any foot complications from diabetes?