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flying with diabetes
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flying with diabetes

Over the upcoming holiday, I'll be flying. (for the first time) The airline I'm flying with says on their website people with medical devices have to notify them 48 hours in advance? (something having to do with electronic interferance) I'm a pump user, and I'm not sure this applies to me or not... I would appreciate any advice anyone can give me in general about all of this, I'm a nervous newbie. My flight will be 3 hrs long,should I keep all my insulin/test strips on my carry on? (so heat won't be a factor) Thanks.
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Avatar_n_tn
Hello Surfin',
I'm a volunteer and a pumper and thought I'd jump in to answer your question.  The TSA (Transportation Safety Admin) folks who do the security searches before folks get too far into our airports are now very well-versed with insulin pump users.  I fly a fair amount and never call ahead.

They will NOT want you to remove your pump once they realize it's a pump.  Occasionally, something thinks it looks like a pager and we have a few chuckles, but I never remove it.  Pumps work fine on airplanes.  Occasionally, if I'm bolusing or doing something with my pump during the flight the stewardess mistakes it for a cell phone or some such & I just clarify.  

Yes, yes, yes always carry ALL your meds with you on board because sometimes checked luggage is delayed or occasionally lost.  Probably you know this from other trips you've taken, but it's a good idea to carry LOTS of extra supplies for your pump, test strips, batteries, cartridges, tubing, etc. etc.  and all your medications, if you take anything other than insulin.  

If you can easily get paper copies of your Rx for meds, that's recommended, tho' I've never needed them.  The thinking is that if, for some reason, for example, you leave your purse in a hot car & cook your insulin, it would help you to get a fresh vial if the pharmacy can get in touch with your regular pharmacy.  

Finally, tho' you probably know this, bring along a supply of syringes for "just in case" every possible thing that can go wrong with your pump does.  Consider it added insurance that nothing will go wrong.

Remember to bring along food for the plane.  Most planes have little to eat -- tho' if in need you could have regular soda or juice for carbs.  Typically, I bring along snacks I know how to count and my nonDM travel companions are always delighted to have some of my real food, too.

This sounds like a lot, but most of all ENJOY your travels!!!
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