Help with site irritation (pump and cgm) on toddler

My 25 month old son (diagnosed 4.5 months ago has been using the animas pump and a cgm for 2.5 months. We have recently had 4 failed dexcom sensor/transmitter issues that required changing it 4 times in 10 days. In addition to the ever other day pump changes, his poor skin has become raw, irritated, etc from the tegraderm, leading to him scratching at it and saying “it hurts me.” He does not have enough fat to rotate the sites to arm, leg or stomach, so they are always placed somewhere in his upper buttock. He did so well the first 2 months that it’s very sad and discouraging to see that this awesome technology is causing him a significant amount of discomfort. I hesitate to put anything on his skin out if fear the tape will not stick and the pump needle or sensor will come off as he scratches at it. Does anyone have any miracle creams or advice to help soothe his skin without jeopardizing his pump/cgm use? Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated.
Thank you,

I am sorry to hear the pump is causing skin problems to your son. Have you thought of using another method of to give insulin to him. When my son was diagnosed the pump was not an option. He used injection method, now he uses the pen (which is his preferable method). He tried the pump when it became available and wasn’t happy using it. The pump is not for everyone. He can always try using it again when he gets older. Give it some thought and ask his doctor what other methods are available.
Peace be with you.

My 4 y.o. went through this. The Dexcom and pump adhesive left horrible irritation, bleeding skin, and we only had her backside with enough fat to put the sites on. It made rotating sites hard because there just isn’t enough real estate on her body to let one site fully heal before we needed to place a new one. We ended up doing a ton of research, and going to a great dermatologist who gave us a fairly high strength prescription cream to clear the worst of the rash up. Every kid is different, but this is what worked for us. We found that many barriers and adhesives made it even worse, including Tegaderm and SkinTac and Hypafix. Under her pump site, we now use a Cavilon barrier wipe and use Opsite Flexifix to help it stay on. We also put an over the counter hydrocortisone cream over any irritation and if as long as it is mild, that usually clears it up in a day. Unfortunately, we temporarily gave up on the Dexcom. I used to have the dexcom on one butt cheek and the pump site on the other, but in order to let her skin rest I really need to be able to rotate cheeks between site changes, and there isn’t enough room to fit both the Dex and the pump on one side. I tried putting the dex on her arm but she wouldn’t tolerate it at all and said it hurt all the time. The numbers were also really off whenever it was anywhere but her hiney. Maybe just not enough fat yet. My plan is to attempt to try to place the dexcom on her thigh, over a Tough Pad placed over Cavilon on her skin. The site “This is Caleb” also walks through several other ideas for how to place dexcom on a kid whose skin is very sensitive. Good luck!

We too use hydrocortisone cream and have his infusion site in his buttock and his cgm in his thigh. We used to use his arm but the thigh is much better.

Hello Ashley, I feel you pain and frustration. We have a 10 year old son that was diagnosed at 16months. We actually had the same problem too. I have several ideas you could try. One is to switch to IV3000. That is a different brand that is like Tegaderm. It is not as sticky but may work well enough for your son. He may just be allergic to the Tegaderm’s adhesive. Another option is to put in his set without using the Tegaderm or IV3000 for the first layer(since the set has adhesive on the round circular part). Then after you put his set in, you can cut a Tegaderm or IV3000 in half(the long direction) and cut out a circular shape to accommodate the set and put both pieces on top to hold his set in better. You could also just use some medical tape for sensitive skin. This still covers him with adhesive though so it may not give him the break he needs. We actually went without the dressing several times to give our son’s skin a break and it did help. Although, we lost many sets that way too since he would get his tubing hung up on his baby toys often back then. We also figured out that when we picked our son up we tended to pull on his tape and it stretched the skin a love the set on his hiney. That would form a straight, red line that puffed up and itched like crazy. So we were just more careful when we picked him up. Another method I tried and still have to go too once in a while since our son is thin and has no where else to put his set as well is to put it in on the same side twice (one higher than the other) and give the other side a longer rest to clear up. As for creams, antibiotic ointment would be good and my favorite miracle cream is Aquaphor. I hear essential oils are miraculous too, I would definitely try some of those if they other two items do not work for him. Oh, one of the best discoveries for our sons skin has been to swim in a pool. We finally built one specifically for our son because it helps his skin and blood sugars so much! We put some salt in it and also a small amount of chlorine. During the summer, his skin is way more healthy. Even putting Epsom salt in his bath water could help his skin heal faster. Give him hugs from us too. I am sad to hear that you all are going through this. The pump is worth the trouble though and I envy you guys for already having a CGM for him! That is the bomb! We would have done anything to have one for our son when he was a baby. Blessings to you all and hang in there, it gets sooooooo much easier!

Thank you so much for the incredibly helpful suggestions and support. We are in the process of trying all of these, and have found aquaphor helps heal on the off days. I really appreciate all the thoughtful and thorough responses :slight_smile: