The Best Insulin Pumps on the Market

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By : Raghuvarya Bollina

An insulin pump is a small computerized device that delivers insulin for the treatment of diabetes. The pump is programmed to release insulin in continuous small basal dose and a bolus dose. A pump has a control module, a reservoir, an infusion set that includes a cannula and tubing system.

Types of Insulin Pumps

There are a number of different types of insulin pumps available on the market.  In general, there are two types of pump devices:

  • A traditional pump uses a fine tube to connect the pump to the cannula. The pump is worn in the pocket.  The program controls are on the pump.
  • A patch pump has a small tube or no tube, and the pump is stuck to the skin. The controls are on a separate wireless device.

The following are types of pumps more commonly used:

Source: Medtronic Media Kit

Medtronic: Minimed 530G system with Enlite

  • Reservoir: 180 or 300 unit models with weight 3.35 and 3.66 ounces respectively
  • Integrated with SmartGuard technology that suspends basal release in response to low blood sugar
  • Software: Easy upload to the web based on the Carelink program
  • 1AAA alkaline energizer battery
  • Basal range: 0.025u in the range of 0.025 to 0.975, 0.05u in the range of 1-9.95u, 0.1u for amounts of 10u or larger, maximum-35u
  • Bolus range: 025u in the range of 0.025-0.975u, 0.05u for amounts larger than 0.975um  maximum-25u
  • Duration of Insulin Action Increment: 1 hour
  • The device is not waterproof
  • It is compatible with Medtronic infusion sets only. Low screen resolution, difficulty to use and hear alarms at night, less accurate, must be purchased as a system.

Medtronic: Minimed 630 G system with Enlite

  • The system has the features of 530 G system with a few differences. The system has only 300 unit reservoir and is waterproof for up to 12 feet for 24 hours.
  • Animas Corp: Vibe
  • Reservoir-200 u with 3.7 ounces weight
  • Waterproof for up to 12 feet deep for 24 hours
  • Integrated with Dexcom G4 platinum CGM
  • Software- uploads to Diasend
  • Bright body color choices, high contrast color screen
  • Compatible with any luer lock infusion set
  • Power: 1AA battery
  • Basal increments: .025u, Maximum: 10u/hour
  • Minimum bolus increment: 0.05u, Maximum- 35u
  • Duration of Insulin Action Increment: 30 min
  • No low glucose suspend feature
  • Incompatible with Dexcom’s G4 505 software
  • Users complain that the speed of the bolus delivery is too fast and uncomfortable.


Insulet Corporation: Omnipod

  • Tubeless comes with a pod and Personal Diabetes Manager (PDM) to control pod functions and glucose release
  • Reservoir: 200 u with 88oz pod and PDM 4.4 ounce
  • Auto cannula insertion
  • A bright color screen on PDM
  • Food library
  • Software: Uploads to Diasend and CoPilot software
  • Power: PDM powered by 2 AAA batteries, Pod powered by 3 357 cell batteries that do not need to be replaced
  • Basal increments: .05u, Maximum: 30u/hour
  • Minimum bolus increment: .05u, Maximum: 30u
  • Duration of Insulin Action Increment: 30min
  • Waterproof
  • High alarm failure rates, pod error, if the PDM is lost-pump delivers basal program but not bolus functions.


Roche: Accu-Chek Combo

  • Reservoir-200u with 2.8 oz weight (lightest)
  • Bluetooth linked pump remote with full programming
  • Software: uploads to Diasend
  • Accepts any luer lock infusion set
  • Bright color screen
  • 1AA battery.  Accepts non-lithium as well as lithium batteries
  • Basal range: 0.01u in the range of 0.05 to 1.00u, 0.05u in the range of 1 to 10u, 0.1u in the range of 10.0 to 25.0u, Maximum: 25u
  • Minimum Bolus Increment: 0.1u, Maximum: 25u
  • Duration of Insulin Action Increment: 15 min
  • Low resolution, tiny screen, reliance on meters to use advanced features and difficult cartridge changes.


Tandem Diabetes Care: t:slim:

  • Reservoir- 300 u with 3.95 oz weight (heaviest)
  • Bright colorful touchscreen
  • Software-uploads to Diasend and web-based to connect software
  • Accepts any luer lock infusion set
  • Carb calculator for multiple and varied carb intakes
  • Powered by rechargeable lithium polymer battery via included micro USB cable
  • Basal range: 0.001u at programmed rates equal to or greater than 0.10u, Maximum: 15u
  • Minimum bolus: 0.01u at volumes greater than 0.05u, Maximum: 25u
  • Duration of Insulin Action Increment: 1min
  • Made of aluminum-metal detector sensitivity.
  • The touch screen allows more user input error despite many confirmation screens
  • An issue of air bubbles
  • Site changes take a lot of time


  1. Insulin Pumps: American Diabetes Association®. Available at: (Accessed: 8th March 2018)
  2. What is an Insulin Pump: Diabetes Education Online. Available at: (Accessed: 14th March 2018)
  3. Insulin Pump Overview – How Insulin Pumps Work, Who Benefits From Them, and Different Types of Pumps. Available at: (Accessed: 14th March 2018)
  4. Insulin Pump Comparison: Which Pump is Right for You? Available at: (Accessed: 15th March 2018)
  5. MiniMed Insulin Pump Therapy | Medtronic Diabetes. Available at: (Accessed: 15th March 2018)
  6. Vibe Dana OmniPod CellNovo, A. R. Insulin pumps available in the UK 2016.
  7. insulin pumps.
  8. Animas® Vibe® system | Insulin Pump Comparison | Animas US. Available at: (Accessed: 15th March 2018)
  9. Type 1 Diabetes Monitor | More than an Insulin Pump | Omnipod®. Available at: (Accessed: 15th March 2018)
  10. Roche Diagnostics Accu-Chek Combo Insulin Pump System Now Available in the United States | Accu-Chek. Available at: (Accessed: 15th March 2018)
  11. Insulin Pumps From Tandem Diabetes Care – Switch Today! Available at: (Accessed: 15th March 2018)
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