Mr T uses these for the infusion of insulin delivered via his pump. Considering he changes the cannula every three days, it must be a total of 500 cannulae used so far.
This is the first one that failed like this, therefore 1:500 chance.
Not too bad.
This is what happened.
There was a millimetre long stump. That’s all. The rest of it stayed behind, in his behind.
I tried to squeeze it out …just a bit, but I gave up since it is a see through tube and I could not see it at all. I could not feel it under my fingers either. I phoned the DE – she had never heard of such a thing. She advised me the best would be to let the doctor dig it out before it could get infected.
Hmmmmm. It was time for bed and I did not feel like rushing to the after hours (again). So I looked up on the internet and decided to go for a splinter removal trick with a thick paste of bicarbonate of soda and a plaster over it …… can't hurt.
Next morning it was still the same. A small red dot where the cannula had pierced the skin initially, it looked just like any other time after we had removed it. I even doubted if the bit of tube was actually still in his body (I thought maybe it was a faulty cannula to start with, maybe it never had a tube, but then I remembered that Mr T’s numbers had been OK over past 3 days which would not be the case if the cannula had been faulty from the start of insertion).
Off we went to the doctor.
I did remember to take a spare cannula with me to show the Dr. what he should be looking for during his dig. Since the cannula has the applicator which conceals the missing tube I had to insert it somewhere and remove it to expose the culprit.
Nonchalantly, in front of the Dr., I inserted the new cannula in my tummy (done that in past just to be able to feel what Mr T feels, at least a bit of it). As I peeled it off to remove it, the blood started squirting from my tummy!
WHAT! Mr T was shocked, poor thing...It had never happened like that to him.
Silly me, I had not even looked where I was inserting the cannula and voila I had struck a vein! We did laugh! Now I was the first one in need of a first aid, not Mr T. I thought I had better stop trying to “help” the situation and let the doctor do his thing.
So out comes the local anesthetic, a seriously BIG needle and a pair of tweezers. A couple of minutes later he was holding a 9mm long tube and Mr T had a plaster to show for it.
Now we know what to do if it happens again. Hope it will be at least another 500 cannulae before then.