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Motor Error.

March 9, 2008

One of the frustrating things about being a diabetic while both sick and PMSing is that you never really know if your astronomically high blood sugar is from a faulty pump set, bad insulin or the fact that your body is just temporarily psychotic.

I have been fighting the Plague for a week now while simultaneously awaiting my period to start (I know, I know, TMI) and while my blood sugars have been high, they have also been a roller-coaster, sometimes up in the 300s, sometimes steady in the 200s and occasionally and miraculously in the 100s.

When I woke up this morning ringing it at a nauseatingly high 414 mg/dl, I was shocked. I knew that my dinner had been a bit large and quite late and that I had actually run out of insulin in the middle of bolusing, but I was confident that I had made up for the insulin when I got home.

Another thing that shocked me was the fact that typically when my blood sugar is high, I wake up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom. I had woken around 8 a.m. to go to the bathroom, but that makes sense so I didn’t think twice about it before crawling back into bed.

When I finally did get up at the disgustingly late hour of 2 p.m. (okay, in my defense, it was 1 p.m. to my body and I’ve been sick!), I went and tested and discovered to my horror what my blood sugar was.

Because of the aforementioned “is this the sickness or the diabetes?” conundrum, I went ahead and bolused accordingly considering my pump set was two days old and my insulin was less than twenty-four hours old.

I sat down on my couch and flipped on the television.


Oh that can’t be good.

I took my pump out of my pocket and stared in horror and disbelief.


I was not terribly confident that I could resurrect my pump. I rewound it and primed it, only to get another MOTOR ERROR. I tried taking the battery out, but that only resulted in a FAILED BATTERY TEST. So I went to CVS and picked up more AAA batteries, and once that was complete, I still got a MOTOR ERROR.

The motor sounded like a car stuck in the mud – the wheels were spinning but it wasn’t going anywhere.

I finally gave up and called the Minimed Customer Service and after waiting on hold forever (edit: I actually hung up and waited awhile before calling back, and while I waited, I found out I had moderate ketones – yay!), I finally spoke to a Customer Service Representative. Having gone through my own trouble-shooting, I was confident there wasn’t anything that could be done. I told the rep that my pump broke and I needed a new one.

The rep asked me what happened and I told him that I was getting a motor error. He confirmed my information and told me that the pump would arrive at 10:30 a.m. on Tuesday – because of course my pump had to break on a Sunday (the other two times my pump had broken was at night and when I was on vacation. I have lousy timing).

Luckily, I still had a bottle of Lantus in my fridge from last summer when I was on my pump vacation. Instead of splitting my Lantus dose, I’m taking it just once. With a broken pump I’m stuck on the priming screen so I can’t look up bolus ratios either, but I’m calling the doctor’s office first thing tomorrow morning to double check to make sure I’m remembering everything correctly.

Note to self: write this stuff down somewhere.

However, it is only two days and after a week like mine, if I’m a couple units off my basal rate or my bolus ratios, I doubt I’ll even notice the difference.

Good health can’t come soon enough.

  1. March 9, 2008 9:27 PM

    That sucks. Pump failures are no fun.

  2. March 9, 2008 9:39 PM

    Feel better soon.

  3. Sara permalink
    March 9, 2008 9:54 PM

    That totally sucks!

  4. March 9, 2008 11:18 PM

    I feel you on the not being able to figure out what the high blood sugar is from… pump problems? underbolusing? bad insulin? psychotic body? except mine’s been going on like this for weeks. No plague or PMS to explain it…

    I ditched my pump and am lantus-ing it for a while too…

    Hope your temporary lantus-transition (i hate transitions) is smooth and your sickness is gone soon!

  5. March 10, 2008 11:06 AM

    Oh the drama! I hate the whole questioning exactly what’s causing the high blood sugars, it’s so complicated. I hope you’re back to “normal” soon.

  6. Gayle permalink
    March 10, 2008 3:46 PM

    Ugh, totally sucks. Hope you feel better! Fyi, the cgm has an incredibly persistent alarm system. I sleep like the dead through my highs, so I’ve found it to be a helpful backup.

  7. Deborah Spencer permalink
    May 10, 2008 8:45 PM

    FYI. been Type1 for 47 years. first 2 yrs. diet controlled, after hormones changed started on insulin. Suffered PMS from the start, and blood sugars were nuts during that time. It took me 2 yrs. to convince my endo to look at my menstral cycle and boold sugars. She did and sent me with a letter and a copy of bgs numbers for 6 months to my gyn. He wanted another 3 months of numbers before he would consider a hystorectomy. Finally at 45 I got the hysto. My numbers are still crazy and follow the cycle. Watch your cycle and that can help with pump or PMS.

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