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A Journal on Internal Medicine

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Minerva Medica 2004 April;95(2):85-92

language: English

Rediscovery of insulin pump treatment of childhood type 1 diabetes

Weinzimer S. A., Doyle E. A., Steffen A. T., Sikes K. A., Tamborlane W. V.


Currently, goals for the treatment of children and adolescents with type 1 diabetes mellitus are to achieve near normal glycemia; minimize the risks of severe hypoglycemia and excessive weight gain; optimize psychosocial functioning and quality of life (for children and their families); and prevent or delay long-term microvascular complications. Continuous subcutaneous insulin infusion (CSII), or insulin pump therapy, provides a treatment option that can assist in the attainment of all of these goals in all ages of children. Insulin pump therapy provides the opportunity for greater flexibility in meal timing and content due to the convenience of its bolus delivery of insulin. Insulin pump therapy can potentially reduce the risk of exercise-related and nocturnal hypoglycemia, through the use of programmable variable basal infusion rates. In pediatric patients, usage of CSII has been demonstrated to reduce both glycosylated hemoglobin levels and frequency of severe hypoglycemia, without sacrifices in safety, quality of life, or weight gain, particularly in conjunction with the use of new insulin analogs and improvements in pump technology. Clinical studies of safety and efficacy of CSII in children and the use of continuous glucose monitoring to optimize insulin pump therapy are reviewed.

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