Does anybody else have the problem of the adhesive on the sensor not holding? Seems like after one day it is already peeling off. By day three there’s almost none left sticking! I have read about the tape and some other stuff? Any recomindations for me? Only had dexcom little over a month so still fairly new to it. Thanks
Will, do you exercise and sweat a lot? that could cause the sensor tape to come loose early. I clean the area with alcohol and let it dry thoroughly before putting the sensor in place. Mine stay stuck for almost a week, then I out tape on all four sides of the sensor like in the diagram in the Dexcom manual. I get a red rash from the extra tape so I use Skin-Prep around the sensor before applying the new tape. use paper tape of the 3M brand from my drugstore. My sensors last two weeks before they sre no longer giving me good numbers.
Also, you can paint the tape after you have stuck it down with either skin-tac or mastisol. I have done this regularly, when I find an edge beginning to come loose. Just let the liquid soak into the tape on the sensor, I do not apply the skin-tac or mastisol before I insert, it is afterwards.
Also, I found that my clothing seems to tend to rub - so as an experiment, I have been taking a piece of a guaze pad (like 3X3 inches) and just taping it (along the edges of the gauze) over the sensor. Seems to help, though the tape does irritate. I peel that off when i shower, put it back afterwards. Again, seems to help now in cooler months, not so sure when gets hotter and I sweat more.
Finally, I have found too after I shower I will take a kleenex/paper towel and “dry” the sensor tape. Maybe helps? Figure cannot hurt!
Thanks Richard. I do exercise daily and i do sweat a lot when exercising. I’ll have to give it a try. So the 3M paper tape works well for you? What exactly is skin-prep? I would definantly like to get some more time out of each sensor but so far they’re only making it barely 7 days. Let you know how it goes.
Skin-Prep is a box of swabs in individual packets. Just rub the swab over the area where the paper tape is to be applied and let it dry. The area will then be sticky to the touch. That makes the paper tape stick better and is supposed to eliminate any allergic reaction that might occur. It works very well for me. I also use Uni Solve when I put on a new sensor to dissolve any glue scum that is left on the skin when the old sensor is removed. Both products are made by the Smith & Nephew company .
I had problems with my current sensor because I had not shaved before I applied it. The hair seemed to prevent the sensor from sticking properly. I stuck it down with IV3000 and it has lasted until today when I have to change it.
I had problems with my pump sites not sticking last summer, my first summer on the pump. I found out that it would stick better if I held my towel to it after a shower to dry the tape. I do that now with my Dex sites. I am able to go 7 to 9 days before the edges start to come loose.
Please take note that “Skin-Prep” and “IV-Prep” are NOT the same thing –
I’ve never seen “Skin-Prep” in a retail pharmacy; it’s a mail-order-only item. Richard157 cleans with alcohol and only uses Skin-Prep around the Sensor area, but I just wipe the entire area with Skin-Prep instead. (Including the Dexcom tape area, and also including the wire insertion point.) It seems to have no effect on Sensor accuracy or longevity.
The area must be COMPLETELY dry before you set down the Sensor pad. Use a hair dryer on “low”, and wait until you see it turn a bit shiny from the nearly microscopic cracks which occur during the drying process.
Although IANOMD, I don’t think that alcohol really does much good as a biological cleaner (and you can find studies which confirm this assessment via Google). Since the ‘carrier fluid’ within “Skin-Prep” already is Isopropyl Alcohol, it would seem to be redundant to use alcohol before applying Skin-Prep. (Richard only uses IPA under the Sensor area – not the same place he uses Skin-Prep for add-on-tape several days later.)
So, I don’t bother with extra IPA. Being an OCD and careful person, I follow up my aggressive soap scrub with either PVI or CHG. (PVI being the “orange stuff” which Medical Persons apply before major and minor surgery in the USA; CHG being an alternative, more widely used in some other Countries.) PVI 10% solution is OTC at any drugstore; CHG requires a Scrip in the USA.
Finally, for extra protection of the edges (and the tape surface too, because it’s water-proof): There’s a special surgical tape, pretty widely used among Dexcom addicts on TD, called “OpSite FlexiFix”. It’s similar to IV3K, but it’s much thinner, and it flexes with your skin when you stretch.
Its usage indication is for “long-term adhesion of medical appliances”. Which seems to be exactly what you’re asking for, right?
Use the “Search” tool, top right corner of these web pages, with the word “flexifix”. It costs a lot, but it comes in gigantic rolls- resulting in a cost, per Sensor, of about 60 cents USA. In several years of use, with this combination, I have NEVER had a tape failure. (Like Richard157, I use each Sensor for exactly two weeks-- I could get 16-19 days if I ran them all the way to failure, but this way, I avoid nasty surprises at inconvenient times.
YMMV, and all of this is totally OFF-LABEL. (And I Am Not A MD, I Am Not A Nurse, etc.)
Rick, it might be unusual, but my drugstore carries Skin-Prep and other Smith & Brothers products.