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How to re-attach an Omnipod pod

My wife is a type 1 diabetic, and for the past year or so she’s been using an Omnipod to deliver the insulin she needs. She likes the Omnipod a lot better than the old-fashioned Medtronic insulin pumps she used to use, but one problem with the pods is that they can come off before their useful life is over. The pods cost around $20 and our insurance doesn’t cover any extras, so it’s important to be able to revive or restore the Omnipod adhesive if a pod comes unstuck.

The pods are supposed to last three days, but sometimes the adhesive only lasts a day or so. Humidity, sweating from activity, swimming and bathing can all make the adhesive fail prematurely. It seems the pods themselves are a lot more waterproof than the adhesive is. Then again, she says sometimes just the force of changing clothes can be enough to knock a pod off.

To reattach them, she uses Skin Tac barrier wipes. At 30 cents per use, that’s a lot less expensive than the pods. You can also get Skin Tac bottles and apply it with a cotton swab, which is sometimes cheaper. Our insurance doesn’t cover Skin Tac. But using it is still a lot cheaper than paying out of pocket for pods.

When the pod starts to come off, she peels back where the adhesive has failed. Then she wipes down the area with Skin Tac, then sticks the pod back down. She says one treatment with Skin Tac lasts for the life of the pod.

Making a suitable skin adhesive is tricky. She tells me the adhesive that comes on the Omnipod doesn’t work well on her. It may work better for other people. If it doesn’t work for you either, the Skin Tac is worth a try.

Other than the adhesive, she really likes the Omnipod, so it’s a good thing that it’s possible to buy a replacement Omnipod adhesive.

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