FreeStyle Libre Pro Sensors - Airport Full body Scanners


#1

My Wife (T1D) and I (T2 but fully Insulin Dependent) are travelling to the USA and Canada between May 22 - July 1. We both use the Abott FreeStyle Libre Pro FGM (with sensors on the back of upper arm) and individual Readers + Glimp App.

  • How safe is it to go through the Airport Full Body Scanners with the Libre Pro Sensors? Will the sensors get damaged?

  • Will they trigger an alarm?

  • Will they need to be declared before entering? (We carry our Doctor’s letter indicating our Diabetes status and that meds and glucometer need to be carried + details about the sensor, along with our prescriptions)

  • Is there an alternate way to avoid full body scanners if there’s a chance the sensors are not allowed / get damaged? (We would want to wear the sensors during the flight to keep tabs on our levels during the long haul flights)

If anyone using this sensor who has traveled in US Flights / Airports have some tips to share it would be wonderful. Thanks


#2

Simple - Just tell TSA that you need a hand pat down because you have non-removable Durable Medical Equipment. Then they will not have you go through full body scanner.


#3

My wife and I get the disgusting pat-downs. The last 2 times it was unbelievably intrusive. I don’t appreciate getting felt up by TSA. I wish there was a better option when wearing our diabetic gear. My only option is to limit how much I travel by air and that’s what I do. I’ll not fly for vacations–just to see family too far away to drive to.


#4

The pat downs don’t bother me as I understand the thorough job and the reasons. It’s just sad we have to go through it but a necessary deterrent at this point in time. I’m not saying it’s pleasant, just something we have to put up with. Not being familiar with a full body scanner the first time I was told it was okay for everyone with equipment to go through the body scanner as an alternative by TSA. But that’s not necessarily true. There was no other option in the entry area I was at and It turned out you had to go to a different area. Then they also still pat you down. . So I was upset that I believed them and that I should have known better. I knew better when I got back on the plane home and the next trip. I had a Libre and an Omnipod and I don’t remember which had what restrictions.

But you can call Libre to find out what is okay.


#5

I’ve gone through airport security many times with my Dexcom CGM and my pump. I’ve never done anything other than disconnect my pump and run it through x-ray with my phone, etc. I haven’t had many problems. On rare occasions the sensor will set off the metal detector or get flagged on the full-body scan. Sometimes I’ll get swabbed and tested by MS or get the dreaded pat down. Sometimes the TSA agent will be savy enough from experience to know what it is and wave me through when I explain it.

My wife recently started on the Libre. We’ve only gone through security a half dozen times, but she doesn’t say it’s there and hasn’t been flagged.

All of this is for US travel or US-EU travel. Perhaps security is more demanding in other regions.

I should note that Dexcom and Abbott don’t recommend taking the sensor through the full-body scanner because they haven’t tested it. They suggest asking for a pat down. I’m betting there will be no sensor damage. So far for me I haven’t had problems, but there is risk. I’d be interested to know if others have experienced problems.


#6

Thank you CJ!


#7

You may also consider getting the TSA pre check certification. I think it costs $85 but is also covered by some credit cards. With pre check you typically only go through a metal detector and not the body scanner.


#8

What is important here is “you typically”, which is true, however, even with TSA pre check, you do not have a guarantee that you will not be asked to go through the body scanner. TSA does a random selection of the pre check line requesting passengers to go through the body scanner. Even at that point, a full body pat down can be requested.


#9

TSA shares tips for travelers with disabilities, medical devices, medical conditions

Local Press Release

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Travelers with a disability or medical condition can download a notification card from www.tsa.gov that they can show a TSA officer to discretely explain a medical condition so that the officer can properly screen the individual based on that information. Use of the card does not allow individuals to bypass screening. (TSA photo)

DULLES, Va. – Individuals with disabilities or medical conditions, and who use medical devices should not think of a Transportation Security Administration (TSA) checkpoint as a barrier to travel. It’s okay to bring along a CPAP machine or breast pump. Yes, passengers can travel with an insulin pump or an ostomy pouch. If an individual has a temporary medical condition, perhaps a broken leg, it does not prevent him from getting through a checkpoint.

All travelers are required to undergo screening at the checkpoint. Passengers with a disability or medical condition or their traveling companion may consult a TSA officer about the best way to relieve any concerns during the screening process. Individuals may provide an officer with a TSA notification card or other medical documentation to describe the condition in a discrete manner. Travelers also may request an accommodation to the security screening process.

If a passenger with a medical device, medical condition or a disability is approved to use TSA Pre✓®, he or she does not need to remove shoes, laptops, 3-1-1 liquids, belts, or light jackets during the screening process. However, everyone is required to undergo screening at the checkpoint by technology or a pat-down. Also, TSA officers may swab an individual’s hands, mobility aids, equipment and other external medical devices to test for explosives using explosives trace detection technology.

Persons with disabilities and medical conditions are not required to remove their shoes if they have a disability or medical condition. However, shoes must undergo additional screening, including

visual/physical inspection as well as explosives trace detection testing of the footwear. Travelers may request to be seated during this portion of the screening.

TSA’s Five Top Resources

TSA has five main resources for travelers with disabilities or individuals who travel with medical devices or medical conditions to ensure that they can get through the security screening process successfully, respectfully and efficiently. They include the TSA Cares helpline, the TSA Contact Center, Passenger Support Specialists, information posted on TSA.gov and interactive Twitter and Facebook Messenger accounts.

  1. TSA’s toll free helpline, called TSA Cares , enables travelers or families of passengers with disabilities and medical conditions to call 1-855-787-2227 with any questions about screening policies, procedures and what to expect at the security checkpoint 72 hours prior to traveling. The helpline is staffed weekdays from 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. ET and from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. on weekends and holidays. Injured service members and veterans including individuals associated with the Wounded Warrior Program may contact TSA Cares to help facilitate the screening process. By asking questions on the helpline, travelers arrive at the airport knowing the screening process and procedures that they will experience, thus reducing anxiety of the unknown.
  2. The TSA Contact Center is a customer call center that is available to answer questions by email at TSA-ContactCenter@tsa.dhs.gov or toll free phone at 1-866-289-9673. Staff is available from 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. weekdays and 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. weekends/holidays; and an automated service is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
  3. Passenger Support Specialists are highly trained TSA officers at airports who have special training in successfully engaging with, and screening, individuals who have disabilities or medical conditions, or who travel with medical devices. Travelers requiring accommodations to the screening process, or who are concerned about the security screening process at the airport may ask for a Passenger Support Specialist or a Supervisory TSA Officer who can provide on-the-spot assistance.
  4. TSA’s website has an entire section devoted to traveling with disabilities, medical conditions and medical devices.

The link provides a host of information via a drop-down menu that allows viewers of the web page to select detailed information on the specific situation with which they have a question. Situations include traveling with medications; Alzheimer’s, dementia, aphasia or a brain injury; autism or intellectual disabilities, blind or low vision; deaf or hard of hearing; use of external medical devices; implants and use of internal medical devices; mobility disabilities, aids and devices; prostheses, casts, braces or support appliances; recent use of radioactive medication and materials; respiratory equipment; and use of service dogs and animals.

  1. A helpful interactive Twitter account, @AskTSA , allows individuals to tweet a question about the screening process for medical devices and for medical conditions, from traveling with a temporary condition ( e.g., a cast on a broken arm or leg) to traveling through a checkpoint wearing an ostomy pouch beneath one’s clothing. Travelers with questions about the screening process can contact a TSA employee for live assistance 365 days a year via Twitter. Tweet questions and comments to @AskTSA from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. weekdays and 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. weekends/holidays. Or, the traveler may send the question to TSA via Facebook Messenger . Nancy50

#10

I frequently travel (domestic and International) the dexcom does not set off the xray and when I go through the full body scanner it obviously shows up. 50% of the time they ask and may swab, the 50% they do not even care.

Further, I have never had to provide any documentation. I just say I have diabetes and they accept it.

I say do not sweat it.