Thursday, April 24, 2014

Airplanes, Pressurized Cabins and A Naturally Sweet Sisters Science Experiment

We recently went on our spring break trip to the World's Happiest Place - the house of the mouse!  I'll share more of that in our next blog post, but wanted to be sure to share what we learned about flying with insulin pumps.

After making it through security (Not a huge deal, but not one that I really like as TSA required a few pat downs of my husband and multiple swabbing of our hands, insulin pump and luggage) with our loads of carry-on luggage and settling into our tiny little airplane seats, the Naturally Sweet Sisters and I decided to embark upon a fun little science experiment.  

We wanted to see what the real effects of cabin pressure and plane take-off/landing are on insulin pumps.  

I had recently posted about airplane travel HERE and thought I should probably do a little of my own research before talking too much more about it.

This little one was so excited.  We haven't flown for four years and she couldn't remember the last few trips!

And by the way, did you know that Delta still serves cookies, pretzels and peanuts on their flights?  The girls were completely enamored with the beverage cart.  The flight attendents were so sweet and kind that each daughter was also given a little set of wings to wear home.   So even if you do not love the TSA, there is still plenty to adore once you are on the plane!

This one looks too much like a teen these days!  Eeek!

After we settled into our seats, we then asked each of the girls to remove their insulin pumps and hold them so that the end of the tubing was exposed.  

Our seat neighbor was a bit amused.  I wish I could have captured her expression of trying to determine what we were doing.

Youngest daughter's tubing and pump connector.

Since we were not all seated together, it was difficult to obtain pictures of both sets of tubing.  We also quickly discovered that my other seat partner, youngest daughter, was better at taking pictures than holding the tubing.

Hard to see, but a tiny bubble formed right at the tip!

The Object of this crazy disconnecting?  To determine if pressurized airplane cabins still force accidently insulin drips from Insulin Pumps.

The last picture is the closest that I could get to catching it on film.  Little bubble of insulin dripped right out as we ascended into the clouds.

Conversely, on the way back down, the pressure caused the exact same thing to happen again.

My best advice?  Be sure to disconnect.  No wants to deal with a low blood sugar right on the way to the rental car pick up or worse, while driving down unfamiliar roads or highways at the start of your vacation.

No comments: