Hi everyone,

I am flying for the first time with an insulin pump and sensor (tandem t:slim & dexcom). I have a few questions that I’m sure some of you more experienced users could answer!

  1. Can all the supplies go through the X-ray machine in a carry on? (pump supplies for refill, extra sensors/transmitters)

  2. I know I can’t go through the body scanner with a pump on, do you just let the TSA agent know/what do you typically say?

  3. Does the pump/dexcom work fine while on the plane?

Any other tips would be greatly appreciated! I have fortunately never been stopped or questioned when going through TSA in the past with just needles & insulin but this will be my first experience with a medical device!

Ok I never put any of my diabetes stuff through the x ray.
I also never go through the magnet scanners. That’s the old fashioned metal detectors. But I have gone through the new style scanners. I just tell them and they look at it and swab my hands for chemicals.
I had a pump fail after a metal detector.
I know someone who had a motor fail after going through the X-ray.
If you want to avoid all of it you ca just tell them you want to be manually checked because you have a medical device.
This method is very personal I have to say. I’ve done it a few times.

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My last trip I learned I could put my pump in plastic ziploc bag, and hand to them before I walked through metal detector. They still checked pump, but at least I avoided pat down. I also had TSA precheck, and that usually gets you through a faster line.


I don’t like to disconnect my pump and all that in a public place like that I worry about it not being sterile. And if they decide to think about it and walk away, to ask someone about it, I might get anxious wondering how long I will be off it. I tend to go into DKA very fast. Like 20 min.
So I just leave it on. I hold it in my hand while still connected.
Then get my hands swabbed. It’s the easiest method for me

I use Pre-check, never disconnect my pump and carry my supplies in a seperate clear bag to the metal detector where I ask for a pat down. It’s an extra 4-5 minutes and nothing goes through the x-ray.



Once you get the answers, make the TSA part of your traveling experience a teaching for the TSA Agents. When I last flew, NOTHING diabetic should be scanned. It should all be hand searched.

If you make it a show & tell, it reduces the citizen - law enforcement from adversarial to we are on a team with me being the teacher. It levels the field.

Please share what you learn so all of us can learn. Best of luck traveling.

The last time when I went through TSA check at LAX I was giving a choice of the scanner or the metal detector, that’s it. (unlike the time before when I was offered complete manual check). They literally had only 2 pass through choices to flow through. No other gates or anything. I think the Libre?, wasn’t supposed to go through the metal detector. I had just hurt my back and I didn’t feel like waiting for someone to come if I questioned it so I just went through the full body scanner with my pod and sensor. (either could always be changed) I had to wait to be patted down and wand scanned, it would have been a lot easier to just go through the metal detector. They both worked fine afterwards.

My insulin, PDM, reader, back up supplies etc were in a separate bag to not go through x-ray and checked to make sure I got it all back. I have heard of insulin being left behind etc. It’s too important to not check to make sure they have put it all back in the bag. I like the idea of a clear plastic bag to put it in as you could see it easier. like @MM1 mentioned.

But LAX was far different than other airports. Yuk! Rude, not helpful etc.

Dexcom will tell you none of their stuff is x-ray safe, and that’s because to say otherwise would require extensive testing to prove it, which they are never going to bother doing. If you want to be maximally cautious, you’ll avoid all that I suppose, but just know the recommendations are not because they expect any of it to be a problem at all. I’ve x-rayed my receiver back when I still used one and many sensors, and I’ve taken sensors and transmitters through the scanners on my body. Nothing ever was remotely affected. Extra insulin goes through the x-ray just fine, and they don’t ever blink at it in my experience (I always keep it in my carry-on, and I don’t bother pulling it out in the liquids bag, and no problem). I don’t use a pump, so can’t comment on any of that.

Also only once of the many many times I’ve flown has my dexcom (worn on lower belly) triggered a follow-up on the body scanner, in which case they just swab it and test the swab, no big deal. But it almost always goes completely unnoticed for me.

I always get the manual pat down. It takes a few minutes longer but I’d rather not risk going through the scanner. I have never had a problem with the TSA agents. Generally, if you’re nice to them, they will be nice enough to you.

Dexcom and Tandem both have TSA informational letters and flying advice on their respective websites.

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Because airports continuously upgrade their equipment, and different countries have different standards.


Yeah, it would be a waste of their resources that could instead go toward product development.

Just again, to the general thread, keep in mind the information these companies provide is not necessarily conveying what is reasonable, but what reduces their liability as much as possible, even if there is no known risk. Sometimes those two things are the same, sometimes not.

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I walk through any variety of scanners with my G6 & Omnipod on. Usually get patted down after and devices swabbed to see if they are bombs. Never had an issue on several 10’s of flights.



A little off topic, but aren’t you scared to fly with Covid? You couldn’t pay me enough to step in an airport, never mind a plane. :slight_smile:

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1st post, I fix Southwest Airlines 737s, I travel all the time for work and pleasure, my Omnipod and G6 almost always result in a pat down, no biggie, all my supplies always are in my carry on, the x-ray machine has never screwed anything up. As for CV19 and flying, the fears are no big deal either, we have not had a massive amount of cases in our inflight(flight attendants) or flight ops(pilots) department, as a matter of fact the cases have been extremely low with zero deaths, the air on all commercial airliners that we breath in flight is coming off the engines, the only recirculated air is from the lower cargo compartment and goes through a HEPA filter, which we change often, no cabin air is recirculated.