Our Dexcom G6 experiences


#141

I’m only using G5, Jim. Been on them since Sept 2017.


#142

I am so glad to know we aren’t crazy… for the first few months, we had the same problems with not a single G6 sensor lasting more than 7-8 days, and lots of no data (predominantly at night). My son wears a tandem x2 and I wonder how they will do an AP system without a full-prof system… the good news is our last 2 sensors have been great!! Have they made changes or is this just good luck?:grimacing:


#143

What is the lot number and expiration date of the G6 sensors you used previously as compared to the last two sensors?

Did the problem with your G6 sensors seem to be adhesive related or nothing to do with the adhesive?


#144

I don’t have the lot numbers anymore … I don’t think adhesive was the issue despite Dexcom’s opinion otherwise. My son applied same adhesive with the G5, and he was able to keep those on for weeks.


#145

Dexcom has admitted the adhesive used on the G6 is inferior to that used on the G5 and it will be improved (I didn’t find out when the new adhesive will be implemented).


#146

I swear I am the only person here that has not had issues with the G6 adhesive. Only one of the sensor came close to being halfway unpeeled by the end of the 10 days but it was still firmly stuck on. Maybe I just have receptive skin or do a really good job at prepping it?

My only annoyance is the compression lows but I think I’ve narrowed down 4 good spots for the sensor that minimize the lows while sleeping. I get the compression low sometimes not because something is pressing on the sensor but how my belly chub gets squashed while sitting laying on my side.


#147

Yeah - I was just looking that up and I think Dex has not given an actual timeframe other than to say it is a priority. My assumption was 2019 Q1 but I can’t recall now if that was a wild guess or if that was based on any comment somebody from Dexcom had publicly made.

Dexcom did specifically state they would not be moving forward with the FDA label change for the G6 sensor 14-day wear until they had resolved the adhesive issue. But that still does not give a timeframe but rather only bumps the 14-day out with an unknown.


#148

Yes, that is exactly what I was told. No 14-day wear labeling until a new adhesive is used.


#149

Hi Jen, which tapes and adhesives are safe for you? I have a major allergic reaction to certain adhesives and can turn bright red within a half hour. I usually try to combat this by using gauze to wrap around an area so the tape is only on the gauze. That doesn’t work of course for everything. I have not reacted to the Libre or the Omnipod adhesive but I am getting a Dexcom and am slightly worried that I will react. So it might be helpful to know what you use that you don’t react to. I react now the worse to paper tape which was safe for years, but transparent tape and band aids forget it. The surgeon once used something “that should be safe” and I turned violently red pretty quick and had to take off the bandage within hours.

But any adhesives before I have reacted to, so I am very curious what works for you in case I need it!


#150

@Marie20,

Everyone is individual, so I think an unfortunate part of the process is to test out tapes and other substances to see if you react. I found that I react least to the metal infusion sets (even though they do contain some nickel, which I’m allergic to), so I have stuck with these over plastic infusion sets, which I react horribly to. Since I’m allergic to the plastic cannulas (have not tried OmniPd) and to nickel, I contacted Dexcom before I got it and asked if I could try it for a few weeks. I was fortunate that they lent me a transmitter and receiver to try for a month (I had to pay for sensors). I found I didn’t react to the sensor wire or the adhesive.

For me, adhesives that work best are Hypafix (I do still sometimes react mildly to this) and Flexifix. I use Hypafix mostly on my infusion sets and Flexifx mostly on my sensors. I’ve found, through trial and error, that I react badly to Tegaderm, IV3000, and Skin Tac, and I further discovered that it’s the “rosin” ingredient in Skin Tac that I react to (discovered because I had an asthma attack twice after being exposed to paint-on dental fluoride, which also contains rosin).

In addition to finding tapes I react the least to, I’ve also found keeping eczema under control with moisturizing and steroid creams during flares (I’ve needed very strong steroid creams and immunosuppressent creams in the past), using Cavilon spray on the sites as a barrier, changing sites at the first sign of irritation (this often means a new set every 24 hours, sometimes every 12 hours), and never missing my daily prescription-strength antihistamine are all very important. I’ve also heard of people using Flonase or Flovent on their sites, but I haven’t found this to make any difference for me. I do often put a combination of Benadryl and Polysporin cream on a site after removal if it’s particularly irritated (usually this means I’ve tried to keep a site in for more than 24 hours).


#151

Thanks Jen!


#152

I just joined this forum and am so glad to have found it! I too am 0 for 6 at getting a sensor to last 10 days! It usually works like a charm for the first 4 days – accurate readings, comfortable, easy to put on, but then BOOM! Day four starts with the “Sensor Error” and the reading may come back for about a half an hour or so, then it goes back to “Sensor Error” until it eventually just dies a pathetic "Sensor Failure " death. Dexcom has replaced each sensor, but I am getting really tired of calling and answering the same questions over and over again. I too am going to research going back to the G5 version, but I know it’s going to be an insurance nightmare!


#153

My concern for being forced to “upgrade” (if that’s what we should call it) to the G6 remains quite high, given all the complaints I’ve heard of, relative to the very few complaints regarding the G5, not to mention my own fantastic results with the G5. sigh.

If I want to be on the phone with tech support on a regular basis, I could go back to the awful Medtronic CGM system. UGH! I fear that the G6 is going to put me on a first-name basis with Dexcom tech support personnel.

Speaking of which, my wife had to call Dexcom this morning because her receiver wouldn’t turn on the screen for quite some time. She and I have had no less than 4 receivers replaced for that issue (the non-touch version).


#154

Cleo one, I’m voice texting to my phone in case this doesn’t make sense when you read it. But you are not alone the struggle is real. What we found works the best is we contacted our Endochronologist, explained the situation and they changed our prescription to say change the sensor every seven days instead of every 10 days. The insurance company should honor the doctors orders for a 90 day supply Two then the 12 sensors inside of it just nine sensors. That way as long as you are averaging seven days you should not have to call decks calm and ask for replacements. We still have to call if there’s other errors or something that starts earlier than seven days but now we’re not calling every week to get a new shipment.


#155

If that works, that’s an ingenious solution. Thinking out loud, I wonder if Medicare would go for that.


#156

Just saw this post. This might explain why I’m having poor results with G6 v G5 as I don’t have much body fat. I sure wish Dexcom shared this with me during one of my TS calls about G6 problems. I have another sensor problem this morning (poor accuracy/wandering signal) on Day 5. I’ll mention this when I call. Maybe they’ll recommend moving back to the G5 - which is what I want anyway.

I’m also seeing ‘compression lows’ with the G6 while I never experienced one with the G4/G5 sensors. The shallower angle might explain this as well - closer proximity to the skin surface.


#157

I would LOVE for someone to post side-by-side photos of G6 and G5 sensor wires, showing the angles and lengths, for comparison purposes. Until I see them for myself, the only info I have regarding the sensor wires is from the one tech that I spoke to, on this subject. I’d like to see for myself!


#158

I spoke with Dexcom yesterday about downgrading to the G5 if my poor performance experiences with the G6 were’nt resolved. He said there are no plans what-so-ever to discontinue G5 and gave me instructions on how to make the downgrade if I made that decision. I don’t think they will force upgrades.


#159

I hope that remains the case for the foreseeable future. Thanks for that info.


#160

I called my CDE today to discuss the issues I’m having with G6. She has other patients who had problems with G6 and returned to G5, but didn’t have much else to offer. She put me in touch with the Dexcom regional manager who offered his ideas and put me in touch with one of Dexcom’s CDE’s. The regional manager also shared details on the CS/TS moves to the Phillipines.

I asked about three of my specific issues. 1) wildly inaccurate results during day 1 (and sometimes day 2) of some sensor sessions. 2) inaccurate results that make me question the ‘needs no calibration’ claim 3) short sensor life and 4) compression lows I didn’t experience on G5. Here’s collectively what I learned on each -

Poor results on day 1

  • wait 20 minutes after inserting the sensor before starting the session (this was from the regional manager based on anecdotal information from users experiencing issues, not a general rule)

  • don’t start a session and go to bed shortly after the warm up period (I’m guilty of this one!)

  • start a session when blood sugars will be reasonably stable during the warm up period (i.e. no meals, etc.)

  • Use only very light force to hold the inserter against your skin.

Questionable accuracy

  • G6 9% accuracy is against blood draws, not finger sticks. Because finger sticks have their own accuracy specs, and because meter accuracy and calibration methods vary by manufacturer, G6 readings may not correlate exactly with finger sticks. Cleanliness of the finger stick site is critical - make sure you wash your hands prior to the finger stick.

  • The G6 algorithm is predictive. The reading is based on data collected 4(?) minutes earlier. The predictive algorithm is why the system can forecast an impending low blood sugar event. A finger stick is a real-time event. If you compare a finger stick reading with G6 when blood sugar is rising or falling, the numbers may be further apart. If you do see a variation under these conditions, you might wait 10-15 minutes and test again.

  • The G6 algorithm is predicated on fewer calibrations. Too many calibrations, especially when they may not match because of the above two reasons, may make the algorithm less accurate. As a general rule, unless the finger stick measurement is 30% above or below the G6 reading, don’t input a calibration value. More calibrations may not be better!

Short sensor life

  • no concrete suggestions here. Reinforced Dexcom’s commitment to replace sensors that don’t meet the 10-day lifetime.

Compression lows

  • There are no major structural differences between the G5 and G6 that would explain this. There shouldn’t be a major difference in incident rate between the two, but they haven’t tested for this.

This is just my ‘core dump’ of the conversations and I don’t have any first hand experience trying any of these, so take it as just that. If anyone tries these and has success/failure, it would be nice to hear.

Regarding restructuring:

  • The Manila call center’s mandate is handling routine tasks (taking/tracking orders, product returns, basic troubleshooting and initiating sensor replacements, etc.)
  • A customer service function will remain in the US primarily for new patients or situations where direct discussions with the doctor or insurance are required.
  • A TS function will also remain in the US for higher level issues. There is already a higher tier technical service group staffed by CDE’s in the US. That’s who spoke with today. I wasn’t aware of that until today! You can reach them by dialing extension 4900 when you call. Dialing an extension number is the last option on the answer prompt. You should only use them if regular TS can’t resolve an issue.