Medtronic 670g Auto mode

Dear Medtronic Diabetes

Your “Auto Mode” system on the shiny new 670g insulin pump sucks.

I mean, when it works, sure, it is great. But when it doesn’t, boy is it a pain.

I mean, I truly love entering my blood sugar, and then having the little turd immediately demand I enter my blood sugar. The thing should be smart enough to know I just did that. “If most_recent_blood_sugar_time < 10 minutes then DO NOT ASK FOR ANOTHER ENTRY.” It is not a hard check to design in a system of this complexity. Seriously.

Also… the calibration cycle for the Guardian brand sensors? Broken. Just like the Enlite sensors. There’s no other word for that. The auto mode ends during calibration. So you fall back to manual. And then you have to convince this stupid hunk of crap to go back into auto mode again. You need to improve this process so bad.

Today’s roller coaster of happy fun times:
6:20 am: (approximately) Removed old sensor. Attached the transmitter to the charger…
7:07 am: Attached new sensor since the charge cycle ended. Began 2-hour warm up time.
7:56 am: Auto mode ended after it gave up waiting for sensor readings. Because it was charging and then warming up. As designed.
9:08 am: First calibration attempt after warm-up. No errors but…
9:31 am: Demands I enter a BG (which I do) and then that I enter a BG (re-enter that value a second time) and then that I calibrate. I do so. No errors but…
9:53 am: Demands I enter a BG (which I do) and then that I enter a BG (I re-enter the value I just gave) and then that I calibrate. I do so. No errors but…
10:17 am: same as previous entry. Do you sense a pattern?
10:39 am: same as above, again.
11:25 am: Let’s try it one last time, because is worth trying rather than skipping my lunch break to drive home to replace the sensor and start over on another 2 hour warm up cycle.

I am done. If it wouldn’t cost me at least $5,000 (US) out of pocket to replace this thing with a different brand (and if I wouldn’t have to switch to shots while I waited that out…) I would sit this thing on a work bench and pound it into dust with a hammer. You have no idea how angry this process makes me.

There is no excuse. Period. I should not have to check my damn blood sugar this many times in the span of 3 hours. That is unacceptable.

My insurance requires special paperwork to have a prescription that covers me for five to six blood sugar tests per day rather than their expectations of 3-4. Your broken algorithm has just cost me a DAY’S worth of test strips in 3 hours. And for that I have NOTHING at all to show for it. Well, nothing but sore fingers, that is.

Screw your pump. It sucks.

Unfortunately, I am stuck with this thing for the next few years.

But when the time comes to upgrade or replace this? I will not be buying Medtronic.




I will grant that Medtronic’s 24-hour tech support staff are excellent in every way.

I’ve called them more in the last few years (my previous two pumps had Enlite sensors that failed roughly once a quarter) than all other product tech support companies of all other products in my world combined. And they were always quick to replace the sensor and to help me. So points for getting that right.

That’s one frustrating experience. I think I’d be right there with you if I was using the 670G. I’ve read many accounts like yours and then I’ve also read about many happy users. I guess this is to be expected with a major medical device design to serve such a wide set of needs.

Not to discourage or aggravate you, many of us using the do it yourself automated insulin dosing systems are enjoying a consistent benefit and a boost to our quality of life. My experience with Loop, while not without some bumps, has been very good. I would not want to live without it.

I can’t help but think that DIY Loopers will have a positive effect on Medtronic’s follow-on efforts. I wish that the traditional pump manufacturers would reach out to the DIY community for collaboration.

You can still use your pump in manual mode and lose the Auto-mode dysfunction drama, right?

Thanks for telling your story.


I went home at lunch, changed out my sensor, and just attempted the first calibration of the new sensor…

It failed within seconds of attempting to calibrate. NOT HAVING A GOOD TIME HERE.

Maybe this would be good time to take an Auto-mode break.

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We call it the dreaded BG loop. When it asks for another BG, don’t give in to its demands. Ignore it for about 2 hours, and then enter a new BG. When you give some time for it to think about it, you don’t end up in the loop.


Just to help you know you’re not alone, even a different brand can and does have its moments.

When we travel, even just for day trips, I take along three new pods and all the stuff needed to start a new one (and syringes just in case).

Although he never said anything, I often felt my husband thought I was a tad on the other side of caution. That is until he sat there and watched me fill pod, after pod, after pod and each one failed. Thank goodness for syringes!

And yes, Omnipod replaced all of the pods, but as a regular course of replacement, they cannot replace the insulin lost, so all of the insulin in three pods was … gone.

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“Go to the corner and think about what you’ve done, insulin pump!”

Like scolding a dog for peeing on the floor.

I like that mental image.

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You almost detailed the exact same experience I have had with my pump. What saved my sanity was the advise to not give the pump the second BG for 2 hours. The process was less painful than. I am enjoying a break from using the sensors after my next batch did not arrive on time due to switching insurance companies. The way a Medtronic help person described the 670 in Auto Mode to me is “IT is NEEDY” and he sure was right with all of its request for BGs and calibrations not to mention all the alarms. I have all my alarms turned off 24/7 so I can sleep at nite and work during the day with out the constant attention it demands.

Good Luck and hang in there for ? years until you can switch…I know I will!

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I got it to go back into auto mode. At 9:31 PM. It exited auto mode at 7:56 AM. 12.5 hours of me pulling my hair.


Yes, next time I’ll wait at least an hour between BG checks, regardless of what it asks for.

When in auto mode my blood sugars are in the 200’s. When in manual mode I average 140’s

This pump sucks. I was told to give the system 2-3 weeks and no better?

I know your pain. I’ve been going through it myself. I would permanently turn off Auto Mode (you can easily) and just use the pump as a standard pump if I didn’t need Auto Mode because it’s the only tool (I’ve said this a million times in my blog) that actually successfully controls my BG. I have a lot of health conditions that make BG control impossible, but Auto Mode does it (when it actually functions!). If you don’t absolutely need Auto Mode then I suggest turning it off and just using the pump as a standard pump.

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Sounds like the notes I use to take until I finally figured it out. All I had to do was do what it told me to do. When it asks for a BG, just enter a BG. When it asks to calibrate, calibrate. Auto mode will end after a minimum or maximum insulin delivery occurs. It may ask for a BG. I admit it. I use the CGM value and manually enter a BG. DON’T CALIBRATE!!! New sensor? It warms up and asks for a calibration. Do one. Calibrate. I know… shortly after it asks for a BG. Just use the CGM value and manually enter a BG and Don’t choose Calibrate. Just acknowledge the BG. Once it clicked for me it was a new world. The 690 pump will have blue tooth to smartphones and solve the calibrate/BG issue soon enough.

Thing about turning auto off and using it as a standard pump: it SUCKS as a standard pump. In particular, it has this infuriating habit of running you through a ridiculous number of clicks to do whatever it is you’re trying to do, and when you finally get there, it hits you with one more saying, hey, do you wanna do this? Um yes. That’s why I clicked fifteen times to get here! Well, slight exaggeration. “Suspend” is only ten clicks (including scrolling" before you get to the “D’ya really wanna do this???” screen.

Which is why, after going back to manual for a couple of weeks, I realized my old Paradigm still worked, and I’ve gone back to that. Three clicks to suspend, only one to cancel! My 670 is back in its box in my emergency back-up supplies drawer.

Yeah. I’m only on week 5 of Auto Mode, and my average blood sugars have dropped from around 165 or so to 145 or so and are getting better as we dial in the carb settings.

So the Auto Mode thing is awesome. When it works.

I truly believe the next pump will be better, as they fine tune the “AI” behind this technology. And it will be interesting to see how other pump manufacturers’ entries into the closed loop technology compare.

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It happens to me on more days than not.

I loved my old 715 & 722. I hate the 670. If I didn’t fear the pain involved (financial & physical with the pulling of the infusion set) in hurling the thing to the floor, this thing would be in tiny pieces.

I frequently go into the BG loop. It happens more days than not.

The most frustrating thing in when you enter a BG and calibrate, seconds later, BG required. I used to think this was due to the great difference between the sensor and the BG reading entered, but yesterday I had the pump reading 100 and the finger stick was 101.

I also do not trust the sensors, I have found them to be very inaccurate. Sometimes they’re great, but half of the time they’re not. Finally, the sensors are supposed to last 1 week. In 5 months, about half have made it a week. My last 2 lasted 7 days combined.

It was frustrating ordering the pump, I couldn’t get a call back from anyone from Medtronic for 2 months. The pump frustrates the hell out of me. However, the pump trainer and Tech Support have been great.

Aloha, I am an out of warranty Animas user and I also have a clinical background in diabetes. I currently have a commercial United Healthcare PPO and their pump choices are the 670G and OmniPod was just added as of April1, 2018. While I have filled out paperwork for a 670G and have sent in a copy of my labs, bg logs from my Dexcom G5, I am pretty concerned about the algorithm in the 670G after reading reviews of repeated fingerstick prompts at night along with alarms, an algorithm that will shut off on false lows and then not resume delivery causing hyperglycemia, and tons of tape in the sensor adhesion process. I’m getting the sense that auto mode isn’t helpful and I do value my personal discretion when accessing my pump at work or when out. I would really appreciate confirmation before I make a decision it sounds like I would regret. I have an active lifestyle when not working and I value my sleep. My current A1C is 6.4 without much hypoglycemia weighting that value…so any thoughts would be most appreciate!

Get another pump (even an earlier model such as the 551) and use a G6 for monitoring your bg’s. Don’t drink the MM kool-aid. :slight_smile:

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Auto mode reminds me of self-driving cars. Not always the best way to handle something that needs some “hands-on” control.

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The Guardian sensors for the 670g seem more accurate so far than the Enlight sensors were. Not that this is a particularly hard target to reach. And I’ve only been on these sensors since May 2, so my data set isn’t great.

I like that the sensors last 7 days instead of 6. (Though that’s not the case for everyone.)

But I have also found that the pump/sensor/transmitter is far more difficult to get working each time I do change it out. Last week, it was my third sensor that worked; I lost two to failed calibration issues. This week, the same thing happened again. I was on the Enlite sensors for several years, so the process isn’t new and I’m just shocked at how much trouble I’m having.

Granted, of the four lost sensors, two were lost because there was bleeding, so I kind of get that. One was lost (I think) because I tried to switch to my leg and it didn’t insert all the way. I loaded it back into the injector thing, but the transmitter lost signal with the pump on that sensor halfway through the 2-hour warm-up and never recovered.

As for the Algorithm, the system should be smarter. It should know that I literally JUST ENTERED a blood sugar and NOT ASK immediately after doing so. That’s just stupid. No, I didn’t enter a random number to see if it is paying attention. GAH. As an IT professional, bad programming like that makes me angry.


I feel like this is the “beta test” version of what will become and amazing product. Eventually. The next pump with this closed loop (whether from Medtronic or someone else) will be better, because they’ll have learned from the feedback. Then the one after that will be GOOD.

I’m thankful that the technology exists and is making my averages come down (from 160s down to the 140s so far and I am hopeful I can get it better). But I will be glad to see what the next few iterations of this technology do to improve the experience.

Now, if only someone could get a CGM system that worked without needles, I’d be SO HAPPY. :wink: