First 4 Days on Vibe...Positive

While it's only 4 days experience, I wanted to share my initial reactions.

This is my 6th pump...first 4 were Minimed/Medtronics and last was an Animas Ping. The Ping was rock solid reliable which is the primary motivation to stick with Animas. My interactions with Animas were courteous and efficient and they delivered services as they said they would. I had no issues.

I view new pumps in the same manner I acquire any new technology...there's going to be a learning process. I watched all the training vids and used the forms included with pump to document the existing settings on my Ping. I also watched all the training vids on the Dex G4 features on BOTH devices. Having had a 1 week trial on the G4 and having over 4 years of experience with the Ping, I felt comfortable starting up.

I got the G4 started up about 36 hours before I did the Vibe. I did use the G4 receiver on startup mostly to see if using both the Vibe and G4 receiver is an is. I did my initial G4 insertion on my right arm(see DiabeticDanica's vids) plus Beast Tape over the adhesive areas to protect and lengthen usage. I added the Beast Tape a day after initial installation. That was a suggestion from the Dex FB pages. One day of usage before I started the Vibe programming and install went quite well.

I did the Vibe startup in two phases...programming/setup and then moving already filled reservoir over to the Vibe using the insertion set placed day before. While doing the setup, I was immediately pleased to see the brightness of the screen. The Ping had dimmed quite a bit over the life of the device in spite of adjustments. The startup was very intuitive and comfortable. I did one minor change in the setup dealing with basals...I chose the 1 instead of 4 since I've never setup different rates for exercise or sick days...I use temporary for those and I use it nearly daily. That one choice is just more efficient for me. After the pump's CGM feature did it's initiation and was identical(or VERY close) to the G4 readings, I shutdown the G4 receiver. The pump itself has been very comfortable and enjoyable so far but being new, I am making minor adjustments especially on the CGM alarms. More to come I have no doubt.
So far, I'm a very happy camper with it.

Now for the surprise...
I received a letter from UHC yesterday congratulating me on the approval of "services" with the device and informing me that if I left the plan, I'd be responsible for the pro-rated cost for whatever remains on the cost of services. Being my fourth NEW pump and having never received any such letter from either BCBS or UHC with previous insurance was a bit of a surprise but I must say, I'm kinda surprised the letters were not used previously. I'll call UHC this week and try to find out what they really mean...more for my own amusement and desire to be informed. I'm not really concerned at this point.

...and I LOVE being able to carry only 1 device which includes the ability to see what my bg is without having to do a finger stick.

I've been using both the G4 and the Ping for several years. Once you get used to a CGM with the overall accuracy of the G4, it's hard to imagine not having it.

I have to admit I'm tempted by the juicy touchscreen of the Tandem t:slim. But my Ping has been rock solid, and my BG control with the combination of the Ping and the G4 has been great. So I think I'll stay with Animas and upgrade to the Vibe.

Getting to carry one less device with me is enough of a reason to upgrade.

Big benefit I'm looking forward to is having a waterproof CGM receiver. It's going to make swimming and watersports way more enjoyable. I'm just hoping that the signal will reach from the transmitter to the Vibe, since they will be within a foot of each other

If it's anything like the Dexcom Receiver, it'll be fine. The range on my Dexcom receiver is about 30 feet.

Let's hope they used the same technology.

I don't believe the signal will pass through the water. Could be wrong, but other similar low-power wireless technologies don't work underwater.

Yeah, it says in the Vibe user guide, "Wireless communication does not work well through water so the range may be much less if you are in a pool, bath tub, waterbed, etc."

So I'm not sure if it will work while swimming, but we'll see.

I have worn my Dexcom while snorkeling, and yes it does transmit. I put my Dex in one of those water-tight bags, attached by a leash, and it floats with me. The signal does pass through the water, albeit at close range.

Awesome. Thanks for commenting.

Would you mind posting the name of the water-tight bag you use? I'm in the market for one

My Ping warrenty is up in May and am really looking forward to the Vibe. I have been using Dexcom for years now as well. I travel a few nights a week and having one less device to carry will be great. My only real problem with my Ping is having difficulty reading the screen when outside. It is quite dim in sunlight. It sounds like my dim screen may be due to age instead of an Animas issue. Was that your experience?

Thank you for this very thorough review of the VIBE. I keep going back and forth on whether I want it or not.

A couple of deal breakers for me regarding the VIBE - Is that the CGM stops working when you suspend insulin delivery and also not having a remote meter.

If I am running a race and need to suspend my insulin delivery, this can be a problem. I might not carry a meter depending on the length of the race. Having the feedback from the CGM becomes important.

I will probably just get another PING.

You don't have to Suspend to halt basal delivery, just set Temp basal to OFF, it will still warn you about minimum delivery but in fact it is stopped. I've not tried it personally but others say it works.

Annabella nailed it...
That is precisely how I turn off my basal by using the Temp basal at OFF for whatever increment I want. I use it frequently and love that it starts back up without further attention from me.
Frankly, I love not having to keep the Ping remote with me when I'm out and about. I was a part of a workshop yesterday including setup, breakdown and speaking. It was wonderful to use the Vibe alone to monitor and adjust my bg.

As Annabella and Michael said, don’t suspend the pump. Just use a temp basal of zero for a specified length of time. I have never suspended pumps because if you forget to re-start them, you’re in big trouble. (Actually I do suspend my pump when I download it to Diasend, but no other time.)

I’ve been using the Vibe for about ten days. I really like only having one device, but I really dislike how the CGM functions in the pump. My initial review of the Vibe is in this blogpost:

I am glad that I upgraded because the net cost was low and if I continue to dislike the CGM integration, I can always go back to my Dex receiver. I do like that the pump with populate the recommended bolus with one push of the Up button. I also never used the Ping remote so there is nothing about the Ping that is better for me than the Vibe.

The range between the G4 transmitter to the Vibe pump is about 3.5 meters (abt 11 feet) if I remember correctly (that is out of the water).

Generally the two are going to spend most of their time closer to each other than that anyway.

Thanks - that makes much more sense. I did not know I could shut it off there - and so maybe I will reconsider after reading your blogpost and Six Until Me. I do like the remote meter - but really I only wear my pump in my bra a few times a year. I could always pull out my old Ping when that happens....:)