I’m going to fly for the first time with the G5 sensor and transmitter attached. I was wondering if the scanners pick up the sensor and transmitter. I plan on just walking through scanner then if flagged I would tell them I’m wearing the CGM. I’m a little more nervous about international travel, but I plan on doing the same thing. I’ll also carry a note from doctor. Has anyone had any recent airport security issues? Thanks.
They are usually pretty familiar with insulin pumps and accessories. I’m sure there are some exceptions to the rule but just hope “your not the lucky one” to get that person.
I strongly recommend calling TSA Cares ((855) 787-2227) and letting them know when and where you are flying. At each airport, they assign a person to you who literally walks with you through the process. Since using this service for the last two years, my security experiences have immensely improved.
I strongly second what Anne16 posted.
So glad you posted this today. I am supposed to fly to Boston next month to see Dr. Faustman. Usually I take the train.
Wow, guess I’m going to try that next time!
I was going to say that every time I go through I just tell 'em I’m wearing a medical device that can’t be detached. I’ve been patted down but it’s all pretty routine for the TSA guys–they seemed to know exactly what I was talking about.
Given that we’re still taking our shoes off because of one goddamn incident fifteen years ago, what worries me is that some jackass will disguise an explosive device as an insulin pump. Then we’re really going to have problems.
I worry about the same exact thing!
I agree with the notion that the TSA handles this pretty well (though I will definitely be looking into “TSA Cares” which I’d never heard of.)
I’ve been wearing a Dexcom G4 for about a year. I have my spare sensor(s) and receiver out of my bag as I approach the inspection area, and immediately tell the first agent I see that I have something that needs to be hand-inspected. Since this always takes a few extra minutes, starting the process early saves time on the other end. Sometimes I have to explain that it’s a medical device that can’t be x-rayed.
9 time out of 10 this works great. They carry it to an area where they swab it for residue of dangerous chemicals and I’m on my way. EXCEPT last month for the first time, the chemical residue sensor came up with an alarm. I had them bring in a supervisor, and ultimately the TSA explosives expert which took an extra 30 minutes. Fortunately I was early for my plane. Bottom line: if it sets off the alarm they either have to open the receiver up (damage and warranty problems) or run it through the X-ray. With fingers crossed I had them run it through the X-ray and was on my way within minutes. No damage to the receiver that I can tell, but I’d hate to do it too often without explicit approval.
I wish the Dexcom official publications on this were more precise. There’s just enough ambiguity in them to leave it unclear whether the receiver will be hurt. But I had no choice.
Needless to say, I swabbed the outside of that receiver with alcohol thoroughly before my return trip, with the receiver separate from the holster.
Following the directions I also ask for a hand-pat-down if they want to put me through the full body scanner. Evidently the walk-through magnetometer is not a problem
good advice by all. Personally, I’ve never had an issue. Shows up as hot spot on full body scan, tell them what it is and I move on. If you are concerned or stressed @Anne16 's advice sounds spot on.
Thanks everyone. Some great advice. I never heard about that TSA Cares, but I am encouraged to hear about it.
I have flown with that a couple of times over here in Europe, the scanners didn’t react to it. They anyhow reacted to a Euro coin I had in my pocket but the manual scan that the security guard did skipped the transmitter.
Keep in mind that roughly 20,000-40,000 type 1 diabetics fly every single day (statistically speaking).
I’ve never had an issue with my Dexcom, but it does go off on the body image scanners.
Also keep in mind that the x-ray scanners are so good now that they can read the labels on your insulin pens.
I suppose you could call the TSA Cares line and make them aware, but that sounds like an awful big waste of time and resources that I’d much rather be used to keep everyone safe.
I’ve flown several times including last month with pump and my Dexcom G5 attached and gone through body scanner with no problems to my equipment. They pull me to the side for the explosives swab. Pre Dexcom I once flew with a hand brace on and they said they had to do a swab as I might have injured my hand making a bomb. On the way home i took the brace off and put it in my purse, disconnected the pump and put it through the xray and did not get swabbed even though infusion site was visible on body scanner. The swab only takes like an extra minute so I don’t bother taking pump off anymore. Are we not supposed to put sensors/receiver through xray cause i always do…
I also put sensors and the receiver through the x-Ray.
That’s kinda the part where I draw the line though. I mean, sometimes I’ve got the thing attached on my abdomen where it’s just a matter of yanking up my shirttails in public and detaching it, but as likely as not it’s on one of my thighs and I’m certainly not going to drop trou in the TSA line, nor make a trip to the men’s and then carry the thing suspended and disconnected for however long it takes to get out the other end of the process and find a restroom on the other side. Everyone’s different but I’d rather just tell 'em I have a medical device attached and can’t (have no intention to) disconnect it. They’ve always been fine with that. Guess it’s all down to what you find more inconvenient!
You should try it for a laugh!! A few years ago I was stopped and asked to disconnect my pump. I had my set in my rear end. I got as far as undoing my belt and the top button on my jeans before they stopped me and said it wouldn’t be necessary. I imagine it kept the queue amused.
I recently flew to florida for spring break. The body scanner didnt pick up on my dexcom g5 and they didnt notice it on the pat down either. It did pick up the omni pod though. They didn’t give me any issues about it
I’ve been flying about once a week for years with a pump and a CGM.
If you are NOT in the TSA Pre-check lane:
Just tell them “I’m opting out” and they will walk you around the scanners and X-rays and then they will give you a pat down. Before the pat down let them know that you have an insulin pump. This is so routine for the TSA, I’ve never even had a raised eyebrow. It takes about 15 minutes longer but there’s no drama and you aren’t voiding any warranties by taking something through a Scanner.
If you get TSA Pre-Check it’s even easier:
Put everything not physically attached to you in your bag and send it through the conveyer belt. Don’t tell them about the insulin pump. As long as its not a T-Slim (they are metal) it wont set off an X-ray. This is my typical M.O.
So is it ok to go through the xray machine with the dexcom G5 transmitter attached to you? Or what they call the naked machine?
You can go through a metal detector but you are advised by Dexcom to not to go through either an X-Ray or Advanced Imaging Technology (AIT) (I don’t believe X-Ray is used anymore in the US). You should ask for a manual pat-down to be really safe.