Airport security (again) Dexcom + Tandem

Sorry to post on this topic again, but I’m looking for some up to date advice/reassurance.
After years of being super cautious and going through a lot of hassle at airports to be patted down and to have all my Dexcom stuff and my Tandem pump hand checked, I’ve started to just go through the scanner with my pump in my hand and my cgm on my body.
One thing I’ve kept up is having my Dexcom sensors hand checked. The last time I did this, it struck me as kind of ridiculous. Can anyone think of a reason that the material on a Dexcom sensor would be damaged by the luggage scanner?
My thinking now is: no pump in the luggage scanner and no extra Dexcom transmitter in the luggage scanner, but otherwise everything (pump, transmitter etc) is fine for the body scanner and the sensors are fine for the luggage scanner.
Please let me know if anyone has had any damaged sensors or other Dexcom/Tandem equipment damaged by airport security scanners and/or if you have a different philosophy about what’s wise to do.

My Dexcom Sensors go everywhere I go. On my body at airport scanners, at the hospital CT scanners MRI, etc. I have never had any issues with sensors going bad on me after passing through various pieces of equipment. Dexcom is super cautious because, as you read their literature, they do not say that their sensors and other pieces of equipment will be damaged. They say that they request that you remove them from your body because Dexcom has not tested their sensors in those environments.

1 Like

7 years of going through airport metal detectors and body scanners and luggage x-ray’s, and I still have not had a Dexcom failure because of it.

I’ve never asked for any special hand-checking. I have run my luggage carry-on stuff through the x-ray and I have walked through whatever system they had for me to walk through - both metal detectors and body scanners.

There is no issue with that.


I’ve worn Dexcom for years now, and I just walk through everything at the airport without saying anything to TSA. Extra sensors and sometimes an extra transmitter are in my carry-on bag that goes through the luggage scanner. I’ve never been stopped or questioned about what is attached to my body or what is in my carry-on bag, and I’ve never had an issue with a sensor or transmitter not working after going through airport security scanners. I don’t have a pump and just put my insulin pens in carry-on bag, too.


I refuse the scanner due to the transmitter. however I send my sensors through the baggage x-ray. The issue for me is I cannot go through the metal detector because of numerous amounts of metal in my body.

So I enjoy the pat down, Just wave as you go past.

1 Like

They let you get an MRI without removing the sensor and transmitter? Is there no steel in either of them?

The MRI I have only done this with the sensor in place. The original post was for the sensor only, not the sensor + transmitter. I do airport scans with a sensor+transmitter in place and the same for CT scans.

Thank you - that makes more sense.


Thank you all so much for your replies. I feel reassured.

To clarify, I do have the transmitter on as well as the sensor when I go through the body scanner. I was thinking about extra sensors and a spare transmitter when I was talking about the luggage scanner. I might still have them hand inspect that extra transmitter but not the extra sensors.

I have been so annoyed by this. My Medtronic pump never went off. So I just walked through every airport security every time wearing it. But this tandem is a nuisance. Every single time it goes off requiring me to step aside and be patted searched and tested. I’m over it. What are these pharma manufacturers doing/ making out lives easier or harder!!

In 25 years of wearing a pump (4 different brands), and 8 years of wearing a Dex, I never had an issue. But withing the past year or two they always do a wipe test of my pump.

BTW, the hand carry luggage scanner is not an x-ray machine, it is a magnetometer than can cause a pump error if you were to detach and put it through. OTH, the scanner has never posed a problem for my laptop or my camera equipment, or my phone.

I would not wear a sensor, even without the transmitter, in an MRI; nor bring any device into the room.


Just checking - by “luggage scanner” you mean the one at TSA, not the checked baggage scanner, right? I never, ever put my T1D supplies in checked baggage; I want it all with me at all times.
As far as sending it through the one at TSA…never had a problem with any device, passive supply, BG testers, etc, etc. being affected by it. I use Tandem with Dexcom G6 and previously use the now-obsolete Animas.

As for me and my wearables - I never go through the metal detector as that’s a sure way to get a full body Pat-Down. Wouldn’t be bad if they included a massage but would probably miss my plane. The body scanner always catches my pump and CGM. I leave the pump on my belt so they find it, have me rub my hands on it and do the wipe test for residue which is always a pass. Sometimes they want to see the CGM, sometimes not.

It’s a bit of a pain but my wife and I have worked out a process - we both signed up for TSA-Pre, we put all our stuff on the conveyor, hers first followed by mine, I go ahead to the line for the body scanner and get stopped while she sails through the metal detector and heads to the end of the conveyor to grab our stuff and wait for me there. The timing usually works out ok. It helps a bit now that, at 75 Years, I no longer have to take my shoes off.



I’ve had a smoother experience detaching the pump, putting it in one of the coin dishes and give it to an agent from the side asking for a hand check or visual inspection. I walk through the detector without any beeps nor a pat down They swab the pump and once the swab test comes back green, they hand it back to me and off I go.

I cannot go through the metal detector (hip) or scanner dexcom transmitter. I have come to love pat down. I have met the best TSA people that way. I call them mini dates.


It’s not the newer pump thst is causing the problem with the scanners. The issue is they have increased the sensetivity on the scanners.
They also changed the laws about it. It used to be you can go through the magnetometer metal detector with anything non metal like a wallet or other stuff and it was all good if you didn’t trigger the alarm.
Now you are not allowed to have anything in your pockets at all. So even if you could get it to not alarm, you are taking a big risk by trying to sneak it in.
I go through the body scanner and I hold my pump in my hand. They swab my hands and I’m through.
I think it’s much easier than being patted down.

1 Like

I take the pat down, I set off the metal detector with all the metal in my body and I will not go through the scanner with my transmitter. Besides, me and family are used to being patted down frequently. I do prefer that the police buy my dinner after they pat me down. However, if I get there after 2Pm I have wait for breakfast. That is the rule in my county anyway.

I have never had any issues with sensors or batteries from any scanning or medical scanners. My issues is that the TSA did not and probably still does not understand Diabetic. Early on my carry on included a small lunch bag with ice blocks for my insulin. Every time I would have to have a supervisor brought forward because the ID-10-T agent didn’t’ know their own rules. The other issue was and still is , I wear class three support stockings for lymphedema. These show up on a body scanner as being extra dense. Even when told before hand, it has always lead to a full body pat down.

Since I’ve signed up for TSA Precheck, I disconnect my Tandem and put it in the bin with my carry-on, phone, etc. and walk through the detector. I still have my Dexcom on and the Sure Steel infusion set. No alarms go off and I haven’t noticed any change in my diabetes equipment.

The only trouble with that is, your infusion set isn’t sterile anymore and more importantly, your tandem could stop working from the X-ray radiation. It’s actually worse for it than the magnet metal detector.

I cannot go thru the metal detector, i have enough metal in my body to build a skyscraper and I do not go though the scanner because of the sensor and pump. So I do the one thing that works every time. I leave home or the hotel early.