My daughter uses the Omnipod and the Dexcom CGM. We love both products. The first couple of months things went very smoothly. However, since around February or March of this year (she got both items in early December), we have been struggling with a horrible, seeping rash wherever the pump/CGM tape touches her skin. We'll change the site after the 3-7 days, depending on the device, and will start slathering Eucerin all over it. Usually it will heal pretty nicely with that, and pretty quickly, but the day after placement elsewhere, that site starts to seep and ooze (yellow)and will turn red. We do not have this problem with other tapes, other than Hypafix. I put Tegaderm over the CGM site, and we do not get a rash under that. But, it doesn't stick as long as it should because the skin under the Dexcom tape starts to seep. Sometimes we are lucky to make it 2 or 3 days with the Dexcom before it fails (usually because it will not stick and therefore comes out). Does anybody have any ideas about what we can do? I tried to cutting down the Dexcom tape, but it is still red where I left tape (plus it makes it harder to put the Tegaderm over because I have less surface area to tape on). It is just so frustrating!! Diabetes is difficult enough without these issues! She handles it better than me, but after the school nurse called today to talk about it, I really need to find something that will help. Thank you!!
Here is from a blog I saved in case we ever got those rashes you are describing: Here, try doing this: BTW, we use the opsite flexifix tape she describes that you get on Amazon and love it.
It’s been almost a year since the first itchy, blistering rashes showed up underneath my Dexcom sensors, but by taking a very peculiar set of precautions, the rashes are all but gone. Thanks to the use of the J&J Toughpad underneath my Dexcom sensors, I’m able to go a full seven (plus!) days without reacting rashly.
So yay! for no rash. But now keeping that sucker stuck is another issue entirely.
It’s not just the sensor that I’m trying to keep stuck, but the whole Toughpad/sensor combination. Peeling edges of any kind create a domino effect where, if not addressed immediately, the whole sensor will just flop the eff off. (Like on those days when I put a new sensor on and then pull on a pair of pants. If the edge of the Toughpad gets compromised in any way, with rolling edges or peeling, that sensor has a life shorter my fuse … which is unfortunately quite short.)
The life of my average Dexcom G4 sensor goes as follows:
◾Prep my skin by taking a shower. (Or, if I haven’t just showered, I wash my skin with soap and water and let it dry before starting the application process.)
◾Warm up the Toughpad by rubbing it vigorously in my hand. (HA! Mis-wrote that as “rubbing it vigorously with my nad” at first. Nad warming. Bwaaa haaaa!)
◾Stick the Toughpad to my skin and press firmly, making sure it’s stuck.
◾Remove the adhesive backing from the Dexcom sensor and place the sensor on top of the Toughpad, so that none of the sensor adhesive is touching my skin.
◾Install the sensor. And roll on with it, as is, for a few days.
◾Once the Toughpad starts to peel (usually around day three or four), I slap some magical Opsite Flexifix tape on the edges.
◾Once the tape is starting to peel and the edges of the Toughpad are lifting away from my skin a little bit, I use the teeny, super-sharp scissors from my sewing kit and snip away the un-stuck edges of tape and Toughpad, leaving a smaller ring of Toughpad around the sensor base.
◾Then I tape that ■■■■ down again.
◾This snip-and-tape process goes on for as long as I can manage, helping prolong the life of the sensor and to also keep my frustration at a reasonable level. See the photo above for a Dexcom sensor/Toughpad combo that’s been whittled down.
I don’t know why it works, but it does, and it helps keep my Dexcom sensor stuck for the FDA-approved seven days … and then some.
Here’s a link to the Opsite Flexifix tape, and to the Toughpads, in case you’re interested in checking them out.
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We don't use the omnipod so I might not be much help there, but I did read (I think on the CWD forums) that someone finally solved their omnipod adhesive woes by putting duct tape underneath the adhesive and only leaving the little part where the insulin went in on the skin.
As far as Dexcom goes, I know that some people use those Johnson and Johnson tough pads and have had luck with that. Have you tried putting a skin barrier down between the adhesive and the skin like IV prep or these: http://www.amazon.com/Cavilon-Sting-Barrier-Film-Wipes/dp/B0011Z3XHU/ref=sr_sp-atf_title_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1377314953&sr=8-3&keywords=skin+barrier+wipes
I have also heard that if that doesn't work, you could try putting tegaderm down first, cutting a small hole for the sensor to go through and then put the dexcom adhesive on top of the tegaderm so it's not touching the skin at all.
I haven't had a chance to try any of these myself, but I have done extensive research on how to fix the problem of allergies to the adhesive so I hope one of these may help you - good luck!
You can also try skin barrier spray or application pads that people use for their colostomy bags. You can buy it on line under “ostomy supplies”. Should really help since it keeps skin from breaking down from feces. Good luck!
My diabetes educator told me I could put tegaderm underneath and insert either device normally. Skin tac is the thickest barrier wipe product I have found.
It seems she is allergic to that tape/glue. Try sandwich technique in which the non allergic tape makes contact with the skin and the allergic tape lies on top of that non allergic tape.In this way there is a barrier between the allergic tape and the skin and the good stickiness quality of the allergic tape stays.
Thanks, everyone, for your suggestions!! I just changed her pump today, and I am trying tegaderm underneath the pump this time. Tegaderm does not seem to bother her skin. Unfortunately her sensor fell out of place (due to the constant seeping from underneath the tape) after only 2 1/2 days. I'm going to try to get her belly all healed before we insert it again, even though I hate for her to go without it. By then we should have an idea about the new method we tried. We have been using the Cavilon spray, as someone suggested, but it just didn't do enough. I will keep all of the suggestions close in case this doesn't work (we are particularly worried that the tegaderm will not stick or somehow the pump will not stay stuck to the tegaderm, so then the pump would come off early). Thanks again!!