[ Skip to main article on this page ]

Other languages: [ fr | de | es | it | pt | nl | ja | ko | zh | ar | cy ]

Welcome to Insulin Pumpers UK [Home] [Experiences] [This section: Advice] [UK issues] [Discussion groups] [Products] [Links] [About us]

[ Bad infusion sites and high bg's | Menstruation and diabetes control | What is a square-wave bolus? | Calculating carbohydrates for recipes | BDEC Online Diabetes Learning Programme | Infusion sets | Air bubbles | Blood glucose converter | CGMS accuracy | Hypo review | What insulin can I put in my pump? | Problem with D-TRON adapter | Obesity | Other drugs | Where to wear your pump | Pump log

advanced search

This page as a pdf file

Infusion sets

All about infusion sets: what's available, where to put them and how to insert them

Melissa Ford has provided an excellent guide to choosing infusion sets. Her article tells you EVERYTHING you need to know about choosing your set ... what this page does is bring together in one handy page comparable data about the different sets on offer. Also, it is written from a UK perspective, rather than a US perspective.

Most sets are luer-lock ("universal" connector) - Melissa's page explains this in detail: I have noted where a Paradigm version is available.

I have noted where different 'tube lengths' (i.e. distance from the site to the pump) and 'cannula lengths' (i.e. length of tube within the body) are available. If the length isn't right for you - Disetronic also make an extension tube, suitable for any luer pump / luer set.

Some manufacturers claim that their set enables you to see the site (as if there are other sets which have less visibility). I have noted where sets are particularly opaque, but have not looked at all of them in detail (if this is an issue for you, ask for samples).

Apologies for the use of both inches and mm for cannula lengths, and mm and gauge for needle widths - this is how the manufacturers present the information!


These websites give further information and contact details for the manufacturers, brands and distributors of sets.

Accu-chek and Disetronic between them cover the Accu-Chek/Disetronic/Roche range.

Animas products are distributed by Advanced Therapeutics.

Deltec products including the Cleo do not currently (1st December 2006) have a UK distributor.

Minimed products

Unomedical manufacturer of Comfort, Quick-set, Inset, Contact and Basic.

Sets at a Glance

See also www.diabeteshealth.com for details of the sets available in the US.

To save space, I have only included the one name for each set - see 'sets in detail' below to find the various names for sets.

  Angle of insertion Whanger? Disconnects at: Tube lengths Cannula lengths Visibility Needle
Basic 30 no disconnects at some point 23, 31 or 43 ins 14mm Choose your own adhesion! 0.41mm (27G) (metal needle set)
Cleo 90 'withdrawer', integral to set site 21 or 34 ins 9mm and 6mm White fabric masks visibility 28g intro needle, 25g cannula
Comfort 20 to 45 only for silhouette site 23, 31 or 43 ins 17mm and 13mm White fabric masks visibility 0.68mm (27g) intro needle, ??? cannula
Contact 90 no few cm from site 23, 31 or 43 ins 6mm, 8mm, 10mm Needle insertion is not visible through the set, and white fabric masks visibility 0.41mm (27G) (metal needle set)
Flex-link 90 yes site 30, 60, 80 and 110 mm 10mm and 8mm White fabric masks visibility ??? intro needle, ??? cannula
Inset II 90 optional built-in whanger, which is more of a 'withdrawer' site 23 and 43 ins 9mm and 6mm Needle point of insertion slightly visible through set; white fabric masks visibility 0.68mm (26g) intro needle, 25g cannula
Quickset 90 mandatory site 23 and 43 ins 9mm and 6mm White fabric masks visibility 0.68mm (27g) intro needle, (25g) cannula
Rapid-d 90 no few cm from site 24 and 43 ins 6, 8 and 10 mm White fabric masks visibility 28g (metal needle set)
Sof-set 90 yes few cm from site 61 and 107mm 9mm and 6mm Clear adhesion 27g intro needle, 25g cannula

Sets in detail

Unomedical Basic / Disetronic Classic / Minimed Polyfin

(Paradigm version available).

Deltec Cleo

Unomedical (manufacturer) Chronimed Comfort / Medtronic Silhouette / Disetronic Tender / Deltec Essential

(Paradigm version available).

Unomedical Contact / Minimed Easyset

Disetronic / Accu-check Flex-link ("Ultraflex" in the USA)

Unomedical Inset II (Supplied by Animas in the UK from February 2007)

Unomedical/Minimed Quickset

(Paradigm version available).

Disetronic/Accu-check Rapid-D

Minimed Sofset

(Paradigm version available).

A word about irritation ...

You may be allergic to the components of sets, or their antibacterial agents, or their glues. If you like a particular set, but it irritates, you can use a barrier between your skin and the set: Tegaderm and Opsite are two of the brands/types ... others are available. Medtronic have an excellent set of notes about these called "Tape Tips".

Concluding remarks

There is now a bewildering variety of set types on the market. You may like to know that the most popular with long-term pump users. However it appears to some new users to be a bit scary. So many people prefer to start off with a 90 degree set.

New pumpers should be offered a range of sets to experiment with. You should expect to go home from hospital, having been shown and tried on a block of false-flesh with at least three sets: one oblique, one 90 degree, and one metal. You should be comfortable, from your practice, with using the serter or manual insertion that these sets require or allow. There is nothing morally wrong with using a serter (she says, using one herself). But those who insert manually do argue convincingly that manual insertion is better for your body. It is always possible to move from using a "whanger" to hand insertion at a later date, when you are more confident about sets.

Do not worry, as a new user, about whether you are leaving the hospital with the 'right' set for you. A good hospital will be expecting you to take an interest in your sets, and to work with them to find the type, size, and length that gives you the least amount of irritation, best control, and colour coordinates with your handbag. OK, no team is going to care about your handbag. And a lot of teams are quite happy to send new pumpers home having trained them on only one set (and worse, on just one set that is known to have a lot of failures....). Print out this page, or the websites of some sets that look to you to be the kind of thing you'd like to try.

Copyright © Patricia Reynolds, with the assistance of Tom Faulkner and Andy Armstrong 2006.

Content compiled by: John Neale and Michael Robinton <michael@bizsystems.com> John Neale is not a medical professional. He has Type 1 diabetes and uses an insulin pump. Michael Robinton is not a medical professional. His daughter has Type 1 diabetes and uses an insulin pump. More about John Neale... More about Michael Robinton...

Created: March 2001; Last updated: Wednesday 6 December 2006

Other pages about infusion sets

[ What is an insulin pump? | Pros and cons of pumping | Wearing a pump | Bad infusion sites and high bgs | Infusion sets | Books to help with diabetes | Using a DiaPort ]

Reader comments

Insulin Pumpers and Insulin Pumpers UK are supported financially by voluntary contributions from members of its discussion groups and from all the principal insulin pump manufacturers.

editor@insulin-pumpers.org.uk www.insulin-pumpers.org.uk/infusionsets/index.shtml ©1999-2013 Insulin Pumpers