4th Day with Dexcom

My Dexcom arrived on Tuesday and my plan was to wait until we got back from a short trip before starting it. Of course I quickly decided that I couldn’t wait to start–no willpower with the new toy.

I had to start it at night and I know that is probably a mistake. The first night was reminiscent of my first night with the Medtronic system. Lots of false alarms with lows. I knew that many of you have said that the sensor often takes about a day to settle in. Actually by morning it was on track.

I’ve had some episodes of incredible accuracy and some times that it’s been off. However, when it’s off, it always seems to find it’s way back to accuracy. With Medtronic, I never felt that the inaccuracies were just a twenty-minute lag. It often/usually was just inaccurate and just didn’t reflect what was going on with my BG. I often had to estate the sensor to get back in the ballpark.

As everyone promised, insertion was easy and painless.

So far I am a big fan. My only complaint is that I really miss the integration with the pump. Although I hated the Medtronic system because of pain and inaccuracy, the integration with the pump was flawless. So far I don’t like carrying the extra device. Also, I will miss the Carelink reports that come with the integration.

But I think I’ve made a good decision to switch to Dexcom. I hope that by the next time I need to pump shop, Dexcom will be integrated with Animas and the new Medtronic Enlite system has been released in the US.

Hope it works out real well, for you, Lathump! :slight_smile: You’ll be used to it in no time flat.

I like some of the reports from Carelink, and wish that I had other reports from Co-Pilot.

The MM inserter device got here, and since then, there has been no bleeding, no bruising, and no pain. I had pain a couple of times, but that was all. It actually inserts as it is intended to do.

There are a couple of new discussions on MM. You may want to read those, if you haven’t already, especially since you are using the pump and Carelink. One or both does involve Carelink. You may have to go back a few pages to see them. Actually, I think the one that Kelly posted, is a featured discussion.


I thought I had posted this in the Dexcom Group and don’t know how it ended up here. I still have a few things to learn about navigating around this site.

But thanks for the heads up on the Carelink posts. I’ll check it out.

Did you enter the numbers when you tested and found that you were not low? That almost always fixes things. We rarely see false lows, but have seen a couple of false highs, which are always a big relief. I think it happened twice after Melissa went swimming. It said she was 250 when she was actually 150! I haven’t seen anyone else report this, but it sure seems like that is what happens to her. She doesn’t swim all that often, but now that we know, we sure won’t let her bolus based on readings after swimming. The sensor straightened right up after she put in the real bg.
As far as carrying the extra device, I get that for sure. Instead of using the gel skins, we took the clip off of the case that comes with it and she slips it into her pocket. Just undo the stitching. She drops it pretty often, so I was way too nervous not having anything on it!

I’m still learning about when to calibrate and when not to. I’ve read that too much calibrating is not good, but I assume that first night I could have calibrated to get things back on track. Since I had been warned that in the first 24 hours things can be off, I just wanted to let things settle in. Of course in the morning the Dexcom woke me with a Low Alert that was correct.

I haven’t loaded the software yet, so I’ll be interested to see what info I get there. As far as I can tell, the Dexcom really doesn’t have much history in it. For example, is there a way to know when you last calibrated and when your next calibration is due? Since the Dexcom continues to work without a calibration, it’s not the end of the world. It’s just information that I used to have.

I have an endo appt next week, so I’ll have to see what report I can manage to put together for her. My endo really used the reports from Carelink, but since the CGM were often off, some of the info she got was false. At my last appointment she commented on a night that was absolutely flat and mentijoned that it would be great if I could duplicated that night every nit. When I got home from the appointment, I remembered that was a night when the sensor had flatlined, but my BG’s were all the place.

So far I’m very happy I made the change. What tape do you used with Melissa?

The dex will remind you to calibrate every 12 hours. I usually calibrate if it’s off by much when I do a fingerstick, IF it has a straight arrow.

The software is awesome, provides soooo much info. You can really see trends, etc. Install it, you and your endo will love it :wink:

We calibrate anytime the sensor is off by more than 20 points or so. We don’t completely trust it during that first day, but we do calibrate it to get it on track if it is off. Regular calibrations are done before breakfast and at about 9pm. As long as it is reading accurately it doesn’t matter at all if you forget. I don’t think that there is anyway to tell, but it really isn’t needed because the screen will remind you. I love that part of it, because the calibrations on the Navigator HAD to be done or else, and they truly were a PITA at times. You had to think about when you inserted it and when all of the cals would be done after that. When I download the Dex, I can easily see the actual bg dots falling right in line with the CGM readings. It really reassures me that things are working well, because I am not the one wearing the system and I don’t ask her that often what the numbers are. Only if she gets an alarm really.
Most of the time I use one inch strips of Flexifix 4" tape, with the corners rounded, but since it has gotten warm I have started to use Skin Tac on both the pods and the Dex. You can print out the user guide and technical help file from the website, but it is 64 pages! Since I am lousy at remembering instructions, I did that. Melissa’s new endo had never seen the reports before, since she is a Minimed only doctor, but she was impressed and seemed to like the Modal Day Chart and made a suggestion based on looking at that. The glucose trend chart is the one that you can point to each dot and see the actual number and also the bg that you entered. The info that you get from the receiver is limited for sure, but the software is overwhelming with info.

Lathump, I am glad that you like the Dex (other than the extra piece to carry around). If you ever have a night like that again that it is off, you can temporarily shut it off – it is marked as “shutdown” on the menu (don’t use stop sensor because that will make you wait the 2 hours again). It takes about 2 minutes to come back when you turn it back on. That is handy if you need to take Tylenol and don’t want to watch the Dex go nuts.

Everyone else seems to like the 4 inch Flexifix tape, but I use the 2 inch. It is cheaper. I cut one longer piece the length of the Dexcom tape then cut that in half to put on the top & bottom of the Dex tape. I also cut 2 pieces that I put on the sides – the 2 inch is a good length for the sides. I don’t cut holes in the middle or round the edges– I like the KISS method!

When you are looking at your reports, if you hover the mouse over the little dots, you can see BS numbers and time – it took me awhile to realize that and I missed knowing the exact time in the beginning.

Thanks for that info, Kelly. I did like the ability with my Revel pump to silence alarms, but it looks as though this will do the same thing. I finally got to the point with Medtronic that I was silencing the alarms a lot of the time.

I am daily amazed at how much more accurate the Dexcom is. Even when it’s off, it usually on it’s way to being right on.

I have some leftover Transpore tape that I was using with my Medtronic sensors and I think it will work fine with the Dexcom. But thanks to you and Mary for tape advice.

Sorry it took so long to respond Lathump - this has been a crazy week! I hope that you are still liking the Dex. Hopefully you won’ t have to silence it too much. The sensors are really easy to restart also. I get an average of 10 days out of each sensor.