So I’m newish to Diabetes (going on 4 months now) and I am currently on the Guardian Connect monitor from Medtronic to keep an eye out for the impending end of my diabetic “honeymoon” as my Edo has called it. With may switch to an insulin pump imminent I’m wondering what is preferred from those who have used both? Medtronic or Dexcom?
Medications I’m currently on:
Metformin 1500, Jardiance 25 mg and Januvia 100 mg
These are all maxed and we have had to steadily increase my doses of the last 4ish months. Here’s hoping this slows down!
I will start off and will say that I like my Medtronic system. However, I woudl say that your best bet is to ask your doctor and his CDE. The first and only person you need to satisfy is yourself. I found that when I started on the pump I relied heavily on my CDE for help. Finding a pump she liked made my and her life easier. I suspect your docotr and CDE will the most help in making this decision.
Note: I am a Medtronic ambassador. My opinions are my own. They did not pay me to say nice things. OK, they sent me a shirt and a cup but even I am more expensive than that.
An insulin pump delivers insulin just below the skin to help control blood glucose levels. A continuous glucose monitor (CGM) uses a sensor placed just below the skin to report glucose levels, usually every five minutes.
Medtronic produces both insulin pumps and CGMs. Dexcom only makes CGMs. The latest systems partner the CGM with the pump so that pump-delivered insulin doses are informed by the changing glucose levels detected by the CGM.
Things are currently changing quickly in this environment and you will be best served by learning all you can about the various systems available and make a decision best suited for you. The doctor’s and CDE’s preferences and decision may differ from one you would make if fully informed. Don’t be intimidated by the seeming complexity of this technology. It is not rocket science!
When you make a commitment to a system, due to insurance payers’ policies, you will likely be committed to four years before being able to refresh the technology. Take the time needed now to become informed about this and do not rely only on the medical professionals to drive your choice. They will not have to live with these devices all day, every day.
Try to find out what the patients are saying about these systems. Use the TuDiabetes search function (the magnifying glass icon at the upper right of this display) to find abundant comments of patients’ opinions of the various technology offerings.
Current commercial systems that deserve your attention are produced by pump companies Medtronic, Insulet (Omnipod), and Tandem. CGM companies include Dexcom and Abbott (Libre system). Abbott’s Libre is technically a flash glucose device in that the wearer needs to manually initiate an electronic inquiry to receive a glucose report. It is not a CGM but a flash glucose monitor – I’ll leave it to your research to understand what that actually means.
Good luck with your research. Don’t be rushed to do this. It won’t take long to educate yourself!
Hi @Morgan_Mariah - welcome to our private club for diabetics and their caregivers.
You didn’t say where you live, which would make some difference if you’re not in the US (Canadian provinces don’t all have access to Tandem pumps, and there are a number of pump options available in Europe Asia and Australia that aren’t available in the North American market).
I’ve used a pump for only 4 years, but in that time saw my pump manufacturer exit the insulin pump market (Animas, owned by J&J). That left many Animas users in a big jam.
I’d speak to diabetics using pumps and spend some time on YouTube. Just remember, unless your doctor is a T1D they know next to nothing about the pro’s and con’s of one pump vs another. Don’t take advice from non-users.
My endo thinks the Medtronic 670 is the cat’s meow, but the reality is many people using it are very unhappy while others do like it, as long as “automode” is turned off.
Take your time and ask lots of questions - the people here aren’t afraid to give you their opinions on pumps
Thank you! I am in the US, I’ve been looking into the T-Slim/dexcom combo, My endo is not on a pump but swears his life to the 670, however I have several friends who hated their experience with it! One went as far as purchasing another pump out of pocket.
However I’ve also heard the customer service with Tandem is lacking… do you find this to be the case?
It also depends on your insurance. My work has United Healthcare and they have an exclusive contract with Medtronic and shut people out from the Tandem products. They do allow omnipods, though.
I started off with the Medtronic 630 and a Dexcom G5 as that is what my first endo used and refused to write scripts for any other products. The problem is that they don’t talk to each other, so you still have to manually bolus.
The Medtronic pump and Tandem pump both are tubed pumps which means a smaller canula in your stomach typically for delivery connected to a tube to the pump typically worn on your belt pocket or wherever. Takes some getting used to.
The Omnipod, however, is tubeless and self contained. The larger pod sits on your stomach and the PDM transmits changes to the pod wirelessly.
I personally like the Omnipod and have since switched to it.
But as everyone said above, choose CAREFULLY with a lot of research. You are making a typical 4 year commitment and can’t switch if you don’t like the one you chose.
I have been using a pump for 25 years, and am on my 5th manufacturer. I loved my Cosmo, and used it for 3 years after it was taken off the market. I am currently using the 630g with the Dexcom G5. After 54 years of T1D I have no problem with adjusting my insulin on the fly so to speak, but it took a lot of work before I felt confidant.
So there are many options of combinations, and you will work out what you think is best. When I had to switch off the Animas a couple of years ago it was very important to me that I be able to read the screen easily in sunlight since I do a lot of hiking and backpacking. I have been treated back in the '80s for retinopathy, and that has affected my ability to see certain color contrasts and fine lettering.
Talk to the local sales rep for a private demo, and then ask for a 1 month trial. The sales rep will do this. If nothing else they will give you a demo model filled with saline for a week to try out (no insertion) to see how you like it. Tandem and Medtronic also have an app for Android and iPhone that demo the pumps.
So right now my endo is saying type 1 but a slow developing type 1. I did not have any kind of precipatating event that lead to my diagnosis. All my symptoms/signs were subtle but because I am a nursing student I had the sense enough to go to the doctor and ask for an A1C (11.9)
My body is still responding to the type 2 meds however they are rapidly becoming insufficient, hence the maximum doses and quantity of meds I’m taking.
About every 6 weeks we have had to up doses or add meds, that’s why we’re expecting to transition to insulin soon.
My first pump was a Medtronic and I used their glucose monitors. I was very dissatified with the glucose monitors, They were very inaccurate in my experience. I did like that they were integrated and also with the Contour Next glucose monitor. I became so dissatisfied with Medtronics glucose monitor that I switched to Dexcom. Very satisfied. When the Medtronic pump’s warranty ran out, I switched to the Tandem pump. It integrates with the Dexcom sensors but not Contour Next meter. No big deal. I think the Tandem is a little more complicated to load as youi have to fill a syringe with inskulin and then insert into a cartridge. Medtronic uses a cartridge that’s fill directly. Look online at the “how-to-use” for both.
Mostly I wanted to stop doing business with Medtronics because they moved their headquarters to Ireland to avoid US taxes, what is know as an inversion. Enjoy all the benefits of the US and not pay your fair share.
I’m looking forward to the G6 sensors next month and the Basal IQ feature. Something to keep in mind is the software for the Tandem and be upgraded.
"…The move, lambasted by critics as unpatriotic, has saved Medtronic more than $3 billion in taxes and helped the company fund an acquisition spree as it emerged as the world’s largest medical device maker, overtaking Johnson & Johnson in that market. By moving its headquarters, which did not require company executives to decamp from their offices in Fridley outside Minneapolis, the firm has turned a corner that it says will help it compete in the rapidly evolving health-care market.
What Medtronic hasn’t done is give up many perks of being a U.S. company. In addition to attending U.S. trade missions, which can help it find customers, Medtronic still holds dozens of government contracts. Since its inversion, it has been awarded more than $40 million in contracts, according to federal procurement data.
“We should be, shareholders should be, angry that Medtronic has access to as much of the benefits of U.S. citizenship as they do,” said Matt Gardner, executive director of the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy, a nonpartisan think tank.