Libre Sensor and Skin-Tac?

I sometimes have a Libre sensor start to come unstuck and occasionally come off before the ten day period is up. Abbott recommends Skin-Tac as one solution to better adhesion. I’ve looked at videos showing application, but it’s still not completely clear. Often the examples are with a Dexcom.

I contacted Abbott and they sort of suggested that you don’t insert the probe through the dried Skin-Tac because of possible contamination. But if you are supposed to apply the liquid away from the probe, but only where the outer rim of the sensor attaches, positioning seems a bit tricky! And that’s particularly true when the attachment is to the back of your arm!

While this is usually only a mild annoyance, I’m thinking that the next iteration with 14 day wear will be a more significant issue.

Has anyone tried this particular combination and what are the steps you follow?

I don’t use the Libre sensor but do use Skin-Tac on my Dexcom sensor bandage. I took a look at a 2016 YouTube video about applying the Libre sensor. “Laura Ninjabetic” showed how to mate the sensor assembly with the applicator and then showed what it looked like.


What if you simply painted the bottom of the adhesive bandage with Skin-Tac at this point in the process and then applied the sensor as usual? You would take care to not contaminate the needle with Skin-Tac. Seems like it would work.

Thanks @Terry4,

I wondered about that. I wasn’t sure about applying a Liquid adhesive to the adhesive tape. But that would certainly be the easiest approach.

I would need to use a small brush, I think, rather than the shoe polish applicator that comes with. Perhaps a set of brushes from the dollar store would do the trick.

I’ve ordered some Skin-Tac, so I’ll have a go at this when it arrives.

I think you could do well just using the fabric ball applicator affixed by wire shaft to the underside of the lid on the approximate 4 ounce bottle.

Possibly. But what I would want to do is put the liquid adhesive on the outer perimeter of the white disk. Note that it is recessed within the outer blue cylinder shown in your photo. I think the ball would prevent getting the adhesive clear to the outer edge. It is that outer edge that peels up, possibly allowing it to catch on clothing or furniture.

I use the alcohol swab, apply the sensor and sort of stick a half of an IV 3000 over the edge. Works for me. I have also applied IV Prep (which leaves some sticky) under the edge, though really I only had about two sensors ever come a bit loose.

I just swab a circle on the back of my arm leaving about a 1/3 inch around space in the middle for the filament to go through. I have done this several times and haven’t had an issue with placement. Is it possible you are overthinking it a little bit? Here’s a video of a youtuber I watch applying a sensor although she uses the wipes the concept is the same.

Skin Tac says to put a thin layer on your skin and let it become tacky before sticking something to it. Sometimes I do this as well, but I always apply to my assembled sensor before application. I just use a qtip and get the whole sensor, edge to needle and get as close as I can without actually touching the needle. Also cleaning with a rag and some alcohol or even a rough paper towel is better than the soft dainty alcohol wipes in my opinion. :joy:

Hi @Firenza

Overthinking? It’s certainly possible. Engineers get accused of this from time-to-time, even us retired ones! :smile: I’ve seen the video you linked and I have two concerns. I’m not convinced that she is able to do what she says. And I’m less convinced that I could do it. It may be that the contamination issue isn’t real or only occasionally causes problems.

If you are leaving a circle of 1/3 inch diameter clear, that means a placement error of 1/6 inch in any direction would put the probe through the Skin-tac. I might be able to do that if the location was on my stomach where I could see it, but back of my arm - no way. I’ve considered a mirror, but it appears the Skin-tac drys clear and would be hard to see, especially for these aging eyes.

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Hi @ellercl,

Thanks for your comments. Just want to be clear that you are applying liquid Skin-tac to the adhesive already on the bottom of the sensor? I was concerned that the solvent in Skin-tac could have a negative effect. But I’m glad to hear that’s not the case. I like the q-tip idea too!

I’ve used SkinTac for Dexcom sensor applications (as well as all pump insets) for several years.

You’re completely overthinking this. I don’t care if the Dexcom sensor goes thru skin painted with SkinTac - in practical application it doesn’t make any difference.

SkinTac allows me to reset G5 sensors up to 4-5 times and still have accurate readings 5-6 weeks later.

I lay down a layer of Opsite Transparent Film dressing (on SkinTac painted skin), then coat the Opsite with another layer of SkinTac before applying Dexcom sensor. Stays firmly in place for 5 weeks, with daily workouts and showers.

I do cut a “window” in the Opsite so the sensor doesn’t need to penetrate it.

see my post here with details / photo

I hold my arm up above my head and am turned toward a good source of light. The Skin-tac is clear but it is also pretty shiny so it I can see exactly where it is. I don’t let it dry. I just swab it on, prepare the sensor for inserting (which takes about 30 seconds) and pop it on. Btw, I don’t think it is that big of a deal if placement was a little off because the filament doesn’t ever touch your skin, only the needle does.

Thanks to all the folks who offered comments. I have a bottle of Skin-tac on order and will try some of them out. It’s still possible I will overthink the issue though — it’s my other chronic condition! :laughing:

Yep! That’s what I do. And if I feel like my skin is less likely to stick (like I had a lot of lotion on that day or maybe I know I’m going to take a shower later) I will put a little directly on my skin too and let it get tacky. I do find applying my sensors and Omnipods before bed to be the best because then there’s no chance of water or anything interfering in the first few hours while it sets up.

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