Blood testing? A thing of the past?


Yeah, it never occurred to me to ask and the number would have probably been meaningless to me back then anyway. “If you hadn’t come in this afternoon you probably wouldn’t have waked up tomorrow morning” conveyed the idea clearly enough. I tried to find out a few years ago but the dr’s office had destroyed those records a long time ago, though the practice was still in business.


I went through untold hundreds upon hundreds of those Chemstrip bG vials. I used to cut them it 3rds even. I had to pay out of pocket until I’d get reimbursed by UHC (IIRC, that was the insurance co I used back then, but I could be wrong). I’d gather up a bunch of receipts (often between $800 and $1,000 per month for strips alone) and mail them to the insurance co. About a quarter of the time they would claim they didn’t receive the receipts. I always kept copies and a detailed Excel spreadsheet with conditionally formatted cells that would turn red if I didn’t receive payment when expected. That way it was easy to determine what receipts I hadn’t received payment for. I had no lancet device other than that horrible blue Ames(?) thing that didn’t retract after it pierced the skin, so it hurt like the dickens. And I couldn’t tell my exact bg level–just that I was high, about right, or low. Two tests not far apart didn’t work out well for judging the trend as my color perception of the results wasn’t up to the task.



A torture device. no springback.


Also known as the “guillotine.” It often struck fear into the hearts of users! I left the hospital with this as part of my starting kit.


I remember this well, but I didn’t mind using it, because I was just so darn grateful that I didn’t have to test my urine anymore.
I have always had very tough fingers and tend to use needles of all sorts, many times before disposing. Yes, I am a very bad girl.


@Dave44 STOP IT! OMG the guillotine! Just thinking of the sound of THWAP! makes me cringe!

On the subject at hand, Im on the Medtronic Guardian 3 and I finger stick only 3x per day. Twice for calibration. Its incredibly accurate for me even on day 1.


I used to test bs about 10-15/day. It just became automatic after 27 yrs. I started the G6 in October, and continued to test less frequently but kept it up as I apparently got a bad batch of sensors. First one worked great, #2-4 were failures. So I kept up the testing until I started sensor #5, and since then, I’ve only tested during that 2 hr. warm up period every 10 days. I’m loving the freedom the G6 has given me and my fingers are equally happy.


I had several of those Guillotines from 3 years of age onwards, I am scarred for life from that and many other things that happened to me back then.


The little plastic part that jutted out at the bottom used to break off periodically from keeping it in my pocket. I vaguely remember that it came a few of those. It was quite a poorly engineered device.


Yea, they came in sheets that you had to twist and break off. Before the guillotine though, was just the ‘lancet’ that you had to manually stab your finger with.


I also did that thousands of times and it always hurt like heck.


Officially we were supposed to change the “platform” (the plastic part with the hole that jutted out) every time just like we were supposed to change the needles.

I had my two Autolets for at least 10 years, only moving on to more modern devices when I had broken all of the original 10 platforms that came with the device and no pharmacy knew what the heck I was talking about when I asked if I could buy more.


There were some instances with the G5 that readings were WAY OFF both high and low, but pretty good for around 80% of the time. The G6 is a marked improvement! I finger stick maybe once or twice a week now just to check or if I get a funny feeling about something amiss. For me they are almost always close enough within 10% with the G6. Over the last 6-7 months I have had two or three instances where the G6 was off by quite a bit or greater than 20%. Even stick tests can vary greatly sometimes from finger to finger on me especially if I am dehydrated. The G6 combined with my new smart watch is a BIG stress reducer.

I’ve had two excessive bleeders on the G6 since October '18. To me the excessive bleeders are the ones that are more than a 1/4" or so and they mess up the readings. I place the sensors above and right or left about 4" or more from my navel. There are some areas that have more capillaries and I keep track of them. Small bleeders like 1/8" or less and stop spreading are OK. I shine a flashlight through the clear part of the sensor with the xmitter attached to check bleeding. A real small amount like an 1/8" around the wire doesn’t seem to effect the operation of the sensor. Most of the time I never get any bleeding.

I can say that Dexcom service has been outstanding for me. If you have any problems call them and they are great.


Well, am becoming more comfortable with not testing much. I am used to BG dropping to 40’s-50’s at times after I wake up as it will soon go up. Testing at that time always registers 80-90. Also, I have found that any reading below 95-100 on G6 will register 10 points more with fingerstick, so I just add 10 to G6 reading and dose accordingly. Also, when it reads high, good chance fingerstick will be higher, but always check highs before doing correction bolus.

But all in all, I feel comfortable knowing that basal will turn off when possibly dropping below 80. At times there are a lot of red vertical lines.

I think accuracy must vary with different individuals.


Is the glucose level adjustable on the pump, for when it shuts off basal?


Exactly the same here. I use the 670G & Guardian 3 with the same number of tests. I test only for calibration (unless the sensor shows a number that is significantly high or low), and just enter the carbs at meals for boluses. It may not eliminate BGs, but it does reduce them. One other thing that I think is important to note, even if you only ever did 3 BGs per day, is that you can usually do them at any time (well, as long as they are reasonably spaced enough to satisfy calibration), so you are not forced to bring your meter to the restaurant or leave the room at a party.


I believe I have set my level at 75; however, the 670G anticipates going down to 75 and will shut off basal earlier such as 85 when it “thinks” you are headed for 75.


Not too sure what you mean. Sometimes when a reading of say '‘95’ is given, but graph going down, basal is turned off and red vertical line appears. As I have low set at 75, the pump only yaps at me when it goes below 75. On occasion when going below 75, the red vertical line (meaning basal not yet turned off) appears.

Sometimes I feel a bit yo-yo-ish as there are so many skinny red lines with small spaces of normal in between. Other times I can go for hours without red lines.


In terms of the Tandem, the high and low limits are for alarms but have nothing to do with Basal-IQ functionality.

The Basal-IQ has very simple rules:

Basal-IQ Technology uses a simple linear regression algorithm that predicts glucose levels 30 minutes ahead based on 3 of the last 4 last consecutive CGM readings. If the glucose level is predicted to be less than 80 mg/dL, or if a CGM reading falls below 70 mg/dL, insulin delivery is suspended. Insulin delivery resumes as soon as sensor glucose values begin to rise. Insulin may be suspended for a minimum of 5 minutes and a maximum of 2 hours within a 2.5-hour rolling window.

I ignore the “70 rule” as I don’t understand it in practice and don’t see evidence of it. So just pretend it is not there. Any sort of Rabbit Hole discussion about what it might theoretically mean is not likely something to peak my interest.

Main take-away is the Basal-IQ:

  • will suspend insulin delivery if it predicts BG below 80 within 30 minutes
  • will subsequently resume insulin delivery when seeing the first cgm data point (5 minute intervals) which is higher (even by 1 point regardless of BG value itself) then the previous cgm data point.

I consider thin red lines to be indicative of a good Basal Rate setting. The Basal-IQ is kicking on and off and giving small nudges When this is occurring are you pleased with the overall cgm graph of the BG?


Hmmm…I’d rather have a lower threshold suspend at times, like around 70. To me, it’s aggravating that Tandem doesn’t allow the user to change the setting.