Special Needs Sunday: The New Button Review

14 Dec

I mentioned before that we were getting a new button for Jenna that would hopefully be an improvement over her previous one.  After much waiting and hassling with our medical supply company, we finally got the button and appropriate tubing last week.  We thought that the (new) Mini One button would work with the extension tubing from the Mic-Key button, but it didn’t.  We had to reorder extension tubing specifically for the Mini One.  The extension tubes still work fine with our Zevex feeding bags though, so that was a relief.  Here’s a picture of our new button:

(You can see a picture of her “old” Mic-Key button in place here.)

Our hope was that the Mini One would not be as likely to get caught on things and would be less apparent under her clothes since it has a lower profile.  Although the extension tube port is definitely a lower profile (impressively), the lateral port (where you insert the syringe to inflate/deflate the interior balloon) is still quite prominent and sticks up just as far as the extension tube port did on the “old” Mic-Key button.  As long as it doesn’t get caught on things (we’ve never had that problem so far), we’re not so worried about the aesthetic side of things.  It DOES seem like the company could keep working on a way to make it less prominent though.

What we’re uber impressed with is the extension tubing (the silicone y-ports at the bottom left of the linked page).  We were having problems with Jenna unhooking her tube (the feeding bag from the extension tube) or opening ports.  These extension tubes make that significantly more difficult.  Both the medicine port and the port that the feeding bag tubing hooks into are made from a much more pliable, soft silicone that has ridges that actually grip the tubing and caps.  It’s a lot more difficult to open the ports, and even MORE difficult to remove the tip of the feeding bag tubing once it’s inserted.  Hallelujah!  My engineer hubby was duly impressed.  We also occasionally had trouble with the extension tube twisting in her sleep enough to come disconnected from her button.  Ugh.  NOW, with the new extension tubes, we notice that when you rotate the tip at the button to lock it, you actually have to push it up and over the “hump” of the other port on the button.  This means that it’s much more difficult for it to twist off as she tosses and turns at night.  Hallelujah again!

It also seems like the softer silicone in the button itself is more flexible and will not rub and irritate her skin as much.  Only time will tell on that one.  We aren’t having any problems with leakage or irritation at the site since we switched, and she seems to be doing fine with it.  We’ve  been applying calendula cream around the site as a preventative (as we do each time we switch her button), and that might be helping too.  Overall, this mommy and daddy give the new button and tubes four thumbs up!

Update:  Here’s what I learned while writing this post.  Sigh.  There are TWO Mini One Balloon Buttons.  One is called the Classic (that we received – pictured above) and the other (that we WANTED) is just called the Mini One and has a lower profile.  Mega-sigh.  Tomorrow, I’ll be on the phone with our medical supply company asking for a new one.  The one we have works great, but I’m excited to know that it DOES look like there’s an option that IS lower profile in all aspects.  If we add that to the features we already love, there’s no beating this product!


Posted by on December 14, 2008 in G-tube issues, Jenna, Special Needs


3 responses to “Special Needs Sunday: The New Button Review

  1. Deborah

    December 15, 2008 at 1:56 pm

    Please keep me posted on how things go with the new button. It looks promising and I may want to consider it for my daughter.

  2. psychmamma

    December 16, 2008 at 12:36 am

    Deborah –

    Will do! So far, things are looking great. I can only imagine that we’ll love the TRULY low profile model even better. 🙂

  3. psychmamma

    October 25, 2010 at 2:20 pm


    Sure! I’ll email you.


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