Cleaning Products Can Damage Your Insulin Pump

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Although I live in an apartment with cat and dog hair scattered around and all the dirt that three little boys bring home, I’m a clean-freak at heart.  I clean the keyboard on my laptop, I’ve been known to wipe down my cell phone, and recently I’ve thought quite a bit about the fact that Mike’s insulin pump, which he’s had for about nine months, is long overdue for a wash down.  Just as I was thinking about this and wondering how to safely clean an insulin pump, I came across an excellent post, Spring Cleaning: Pump Edition, by Naomi Kingery on Medtronic’s blog, The Loop.  Naomi notes that you should not clean your insulin pump with organic solvents like lighter fluid, nail polish remover, paint thinner or lubricants.  Additionally, household items like Windex, 409, cleaning sprays or lotions, and hand sanitizer can affect your pump.

Here’s how you should clean your insulin pump:

1. Wash your hands thoroughly.
2. Use only a damp cloth and mild detergent mixed with water to clean the outside of your pump. Do not place your pump under running water.
3. Wipe the pump with a clean cloth, dampened with clean water.
4. Dry with a clean cloth.
5. Keep the reservoir compartment and battery compartment dry and away from moisture.
6. Use a 70 percent alcohol wipe to disinfect your pump.
7. Use a dry clean cotton tip to remove any battery residue from the battery cap.
8. Use a dry clean cloth to remove any battery residue from the battery compartment opening.

Another tip: Avoid getting sunscreen and insect repellant containing DEET on your pump.

Thanks to Naomi Kingery and Medtronic for helpful advice.

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