I wasn’t sure when I started the Dexcom 7+ CGMS on September 2, 2009 whether I really liked this additional piece of technology to help me manage my diabetes or not. But this morning my Dexcom 7+ receiver died and I sure do miss it already. I’ve called Dexcom tech support and they will FedEx me a new receiver next business day which will not be until Monday I am wondering how often the receivers quit and is this a common occurrence?
That’s interesting. Caleb’s failed in his first week of use. It was late on a Thursday and we didn’t get it till Monday. We were told it would be Saturday delivery but it was not.
You’ve got me scared now, I started about the same time you did and have come to rely on my Dexcom! My July A1C was 7.2 and my October one was 6.4. I don’t want to think about it dying! Right now mine’s still working but it has had some issues with losing download data and disappearing trend arrows. I’m hoping those are indicative of an early death. Good luck this weekend, just remember to test a lot and hopefully it’ll be there Monday.
For what it’s worth, my 1st Dex receiver is over a year old now and still going strong. It was an original Dexcom Seven system and then I upgraded it to the Seven Plus system as soon as the upgrade came out (same receiver though). It looks pretty ratty from being tossed around my purse for hundreds of days, but it works like a charm. Seems like you only hear the failure stories on these web sites, so I thought I should throw that in there to help balance things out a bit.
I’m glad you posted a positive comment about the Dexcom receiver. My husband was quick to remind me that the receiver is a piece of ‘machinery’ and sometimes machines do fail. I just never realized how much I’ve come to rely on it in such a short period of time.
Lorraine ~ Was it hard to reprogram Caleb’s new receiver? Seems like it took me forever to get it set up the way I wanted it to be, but maybe that is because I never received any official training from Dexcom either.
I’ve been using mine since December and upgraded to Seven Plus the end of June. The receiver went dead in August and I was sure it was toast, but Dexcom Support had me put a paperclip into a hole in the back and that brought it back up. Once it was up they had me do a full charge, I think. Aside from that glitch, mine has held up pretty well.
Mine often quits (completely), but it always comes back fine with the “initializing…” message after I press the “OK” button a couple of times.
It stays totally blank and non-responsive for almost a minute before that message appears, but it does come back. My high/low setpoints aren’t lost when this happens, it’s as if it went into “Shutdown” mode for an airplane trip all by itself.
I’ve never needed to use the reset switch, which is pushed by pressing a straightened-out length of paperclip wire into the hole. (It’s to the left of the product identification label on the back, towards the top-- even with the text on the label which shows Dexcom’s address on Sequence Drive.)
Mine died (last week) after having it for a week. I picked it up off the desk and the vibrate started and wouldn’t stop. Called customer service and they suggested I try poking it in the back with a paper clip (there’s a little hole back there). But it didn’t work. They sent a new one that is still healthy.
I don’t remember doing anything special. I think I had to charge it and put the transmitter code in it and that’s it. Am I forgetting though?
You have to reprogram your high and low settings and alarms, but I often change those multiple times a day and they should only take a minute or so each. You also need to program in the time and date which was a pain because of the scrolling through the numbers but no worse than entering a reading. Those are I believe the only things that actually required programing.
I have a theory that all these Dex “sensor” issues are really Dex “receiver” issues. Can’t prove it, though… Maybe there is a problem with all the receivers made during a certain time period?
Disappearing trend arrows are not a fault. The arrow pointing to the right means that your blood sugars are rising or falling so gently it’s not worth saying whether they are rising or falling. The right arrow is telling you that they are not constant, but nothing to worry about.
No arrow shown indicates that your sugars are remaining constant. I.e. The receiver is picking up identical results from the transmitter.
Mine just died too! I searched for a thread discussing Dexom failure and found this. So, I’m bringing it up again. I have had nothing but problems since I started on Dex last Wednesday! I kept getting “error 1” over and over…at least once a day. Finally it would not give me a reading and Dexcom agreed to send out a new sensor. So, I replace the sensor yesterday and immediately after the ENTER 2 BG…it went into ??? and remained there for the rest of the afternoon. I tried to shutdown and turn it back on. I got a few readings then it went back into error 1. Then, about an hour later went into sensor failure. I put it in stop sensor and went back to sleep. This morning the receiver was dead. The little keys were flashing, but after calling Dex, plugging it in, and resetting it with a paperclip, no go. They are sending me a new one, but I am FRUSTRATED!!! I have had nothing but problems and errors since the start. And when I pulled the sensor out, it looked like there was a little dried blood around it…but I used the upper butt area. HELP!
A little dried blood is nothing to worry about on a normal site. It is crummy that you started out with a bad receiver. You’ve no chance to have a good experience if the equipment is bad! Don’t let this bad start determine your feelings for your Dex, when the new receiver comes give it a fair chance. The Dex is a lifesaver as long as it works.
Do you have any tips on insertion? My CDE said I could have been getting the ??? after insertion because the of insertion technique. I was in her office for the first insertion, and she didn’t say I was doing anything wrong. Any tips are greatly appreciated!
I don’t really have much to say here… When I do my insertions I prepare the area with an alcohol swab, wait for it to dry fully, press the adhesive onto the area well, going around it with my fingernail a couple of times to make sure it’s really stuck, and then push the plunger in. I’ve found the faster you can push it in the less it hurts, I’m just still working up the courage to really shove it in. Once you’ve got the plunger all the way in (flush with the mechanism) you pull back the collar all the way (until you hear the clicks) and then just squeeze the release buttons and work the inserter off of the base. At that point all you’ve got left is popping the transmitter in and tearing off the tab. I’ve found that sites on my sides (love handle area) work best, I got lots of ??? when it was on my stomach but that’s really the only tip I have. Hopefully it’ll all be better once the new receiver comes!
I’ve had mine since August and only had one failed sensor the whole time. My receiver quit once also, but Dexcom was quick about replacing it. Not sure what happened.
I clean the site with alcohol, and use S&N skin prep wipes. They help the adhesive stick for 2 weeks. Once i have the adhesive stuck, I whack (quickly) the inserter with the palm of my hand while holding the edges of the base. No pain at all! Just don’t forget (like i did once) to pull back the collar before detaching the inserter. Quick way to waste a sensor. I’ve tried several sites but find just below my sternum and ribs the best place. I don’t lay on it that way at night and I only need two sites (one every 2 weeks).
(In reply to Heidi’s “mine just died too” post)
“Error 1” and “???” are both supposed to correspond to problems with voltage readings at the Sensor end. But with your really weird Receiver failure, I don’t think that we should even trust that either of the errors really occurred at all. The following discussion is about VALID instances of these two errors.
“Error 1” corresponds to “total nonsense” voltage readings, much worse than those values which provoke “???”. The only cause which MIGHT be fixable is when you didn’t tilt the lever hard enough to clip --> BOTH <-- sides of the Transmitter down and underneath the clip arms. Now that Dexcom is waterproof the clip is very tight, and needs a strong push to engage. Always make sure that you hear TWO distinct clicks, not just one. In nearly all cases of “Error 1” with a properly clipped transmitter, the Sensor had actual damage going in (bent wire). It will never become reliable; my advice to is to give up immediately after verifying the Transmitter was clipped correctly. A magnifying makeup mirror makes this a lot easier to check.
BTW: Clip the Transmitter into place with only a “tilting” motion on the “tilt-down lever” part, avoiding lots of downward pressure which pushes the sensor housing into your skin. (It’s important to avoid moving the Sensor, relative to your tissue, after it 's been shot into place.) After you’ve heard BOTH clicks, but before breaking the “tilt-down lever” off from the housing, move the fingers of your other hand onto the CLIP ends of the plastic arms – the ends where the tiny clips actually hold the transmitter down, not the ridged “opening” areas towards the middle of the housing. Squeeze your fingers towards each other, and use this firm grip for leverage to prevent sideways twisting of the Sensor housing itself while you do a sideways twist on the “tilt-down lever” to snap it off from the housing. (Twisting the housing is bad, for the same reason: it makes the wire move within your skin.)
“???” corresponds to data which Dexcom doesn’t trust for display purposes right now, but considers possibly temporary and recoverable. On a new Sensor, give it up to 4 extra hours (6 hours total) to come around. If you’ve been sleeping on the Sensor, let it have 1/2 hour of daily activity and then calibrate-- it might come up just fine. But I disagree with Rebecca about dried blood-- except for very thin layer on the Sensor wire itself, blood poisoning is a frequent and (and often unrecoverable) cause of early Sensor failure.
Thank you so much for the wonderful tips and advice. I have started on my new receiver. I had ??? for about 12 hours after placing the new sensor. The ??? appeared about 1 hour into the warmup period. At 3 AM it asked for two finger sticks. I entered them and it started up. I had a few periods of ??? through the next few hours, but now it seems to be reading accurately. Maybe my warmup period is just longer. My CDE says it is probably insertion problem/technique, so I will meet with her to see what we can do to work on that.
I am crossing my fingers for good luck this go 'round!