'Mill Hill Infuser', the first portable insulin infusion pump, London, England, 1976
Made at the National Institute for Medical Research, based in Mill Hill, London, this so-called ‘Mill Hill Infuser’ was the first portable insulin infusion pump made to treat diabetes. Ordinarily, insulin is released from the pancreas to regulate the amount of glucose in the blood. Diabetes is a condition where insulin cannot be produced by the body. Too high levels or too low levels of glucose can be dangerous to a person’s health. Worn at all times, a battery driven pump delivers insulin through a plastic tube inserted into the skin at a controlled rate, which can be varied if necessary. Insulin infusion pumps are considered to be a more convenient way of taking insulin rather than by injection. Inhalers, patches and pills have also been developed.
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Glossary: insulin infusion pump
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Glossary: diseases of affluence
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