Changing out the Freestyle Libre sensor

The first couple of times I changed my sensor, I used a ton of Unisolve and ended up with a gooey mess. But then I realized that the attachment to your skin is accomplished using double-sided sticky tape. It makes a lot of difference if the tape remains on the sensor or on your skin.

My current approach is to use a cotton ball with a bit of Unisolve to loosen an edge. I use a pocket knife to pick at this edge until it breaks loose. Once I have that loose edge, I can peel away the tape and sensor together. It’s much less gooey. And if there is any residual adhesive, I just apply some talc or baby powder and forget about it. It won’t stick to anything and will wear off in short order.

I’ll use up the remaining Unisolve, but after that’s gone I’ll probably go with naptha (Coleman lantern fuel) or even rubbing alcohol. I suspect they will work as well. In any event, I will be using very little of any solvent.

Seems to me you are lucky to have your sensor stick so well. I didn’t need any solvent to assist in removing my first sensor. The second one fell off on the seventh day. The third one fell off on the eighth day. I’m now on the sixth day with the fourth sensor. I’m just hoping I can get through my shower tonight without it falling off. Each shower I take and each time I change clothes, I worry about losing a sensor.

Abbott is replacing one of my sensors and advised me to check out the third party adhesives listed on their sensor adhesion guide. I plan to get one of those before I need to apply another sensor (assuming this one lasts the full ten days.) Only if I’m using an extra adhesive am I likely to need any kind of solvent or other assist in getting it off.

I haven’t lost any sensors prematurely but I also don’t need any solvents to get them off after they are done. I just apply a little bit of baby oil to a cotton pad and rub it on the edge of the adhesive and the rest of the sensor peels right off.

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We really are all different, aren’t we? So far, I’ve had one sensor come off and Abbott replaced that for me. For all others, they have stuck tightly and are quite resistant to removal. Long before the Libre was approved in the US, I was collecting info on tapes and adhesives that folks in Europe and elsewhere were trying. Some were also experiencing sensitivity to the adhesive and were trying work-arounds for that. Sometimes we are our own clinical trial of one!

Good luck with the adhesion problem. I do think this issue goes beyond just Abbott and the Libre though. Adhesives and tapes are widely used for a variety of medical purposes and similar adhesion/sensitivity issues exist.

I like the idea of baby oil for removal. I’ll have to give that a try. For whatever the solvent, I think just lifting the edge vs soaking the whole sensor keeps the mess to a minimum.

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The sensor uses a double sided tape. I rip out the plastic sensor away from the tape leaving the tape still on my arm. Then I peel out the tape from my arm.

These are good for keeping them on - sometimes they are cheap on ebay - even outdated work well

My wife needs a jackhammer to get hers off - just the sensor - nothing else

I use tweezers to lift the edge and peel off the Libre sensor. My finger nails are not long enough.

I have had 6 or seven sensors now and all have remained well attached for their 2 weeks even with a daily shower. I am careful not to be too aggressive around the sensor when showering. After removing a sensor only a little soap and water is required to remove and remaining adhesive. I do switch arms for each new sensor.

Baby oil has worked fine for me and it is still sticking at day 10!