Trying to decide on either getting Minimed upgrade or changing to T:Slim. I am so used to my Paradigm, we are like old friends and actually with my old, and dead pump that I will get credit for, it would be about $500 cheaper to get the upgrade. There are a couple of questions that I have that I don't really trust a rep to answer because I feel like they would be a bit biased. 1) Guess they haven't been around long enough to really know this but, I'm wondering how long and durable these things are. Are they programmed to "die" after the 4-year warranty is up and than you are forced to upgrade?? 2) Seeing how this is pretty much 100% computerized, how secure is it really? Is it suspectible to tampering or hacking? Can it crash for instance? I feel like even though the Minimed may not be as sleek and hi-tech and the t:slim, at least noone can hack into it as far as I know. And, 3) I'll probably need to ask the Tandem rep this one but I'm wondering if the brand new box of Medtronic supplies and even the dead Minimed pump would be of any value to t:slim or not? Okay, anyone got any answers???
As far as hacking goes, the T:Slim is not wireless and nothing can get loaded to it. You can however download its history to your computer. Your minimed is just as much a computer as the T:Slim. It's just that the T:Slim looks so much more modern that its easy to overlook this fact. I have been loving my T:Slim and my friend has had the Ping and Minimed and they just don't compare. I also love how slim it is - fits in my work slacks with no issue. Never was into wearing the "beeper" look on my belt. :)
I switched from Animas. While I loved my past pump, everything from Animas and Medtronic is based on their designs that go back over 10 years now. I was very interested in Tandem because they started from scratch with an entirely new way to deliver insulin (from a bag in the cartridge, which holds ~275u and physically cannot release all the insulin in a malfunction like others potentially could). Even with the bigger capacity, the pump is smaller and thinner, still waterproof, and has been extremely durable for me.
1. It appears to be durable enough to last a long time. I'm not worried because you get an immediate replacement if a pump dies. Being "forced to upgrade" at no cost isn't really a negative.
2. Mine has never crashed, unlike my Animas pumps that would give alarms on occasion for no apparent reason and require calling customer service and restarting the pump. Again, I think it's because this is a new design that understands the flaws of 10 year old designs.
3. Good question. I still have my Animas packed up and out of sight. I would think the original company would probably care more than Tandem would, so try asking them.
Ok, I initially posted an overview (Which I'm sure you've had) as opposed to answering your questions! My mistake!
1) As far as them being manufactured to "intentionally die" after four years, we won't be able to speculate much until 2016 rolls around =p Regarding aesthetic feel and perceived durability, the pump feels sturdy and well built. Apart from the usual care I impart on $4000 devices, I'm not worried about the usability deteriorating post-impact. My rep banged it pretty hard on the table during the demonstration, and it worked fine throughout.
2) Like Anthony mentioned above, every pump on the market uses an on board computer to calculate boluses and basal rates. Those computers are just as susceptible to crashes and bugs as any other (Including the one inside a T:Slim.) However, one would expect the FDA to issue strict standards during testing to ensure reliability and safety. Peoples lives depend on it.
3) The way I see things, it definitely won't hurt to ask! What's the worst that could happen? That they say no? Oh well, but it beats missing out on credit!
Hope that helps!
Thanks for asking this. I have been on the minimed's old model and am getting ready to switch in september. You are doing homework for me. I have the dexcom cgm and love it and am probably going to go tandem......
Hi, Rudy. Could you please re-add your overview? Thanks!
I loved my Paradigm, too, and was hesitant to switch when it finally died last summer. I researched and asked a lot of questions, like you're doing. It's good to ask people with experience. I thought I really wanted to switch to Omnipod, until I heard all the serious problems with it. I'm so glad I went with t:slim! I love the smaller size, easy navigation, enhanced safety features, and the microdelivery system. After 14 years on the Paradigm, I was never able to get my a1c below 8.5, no matter what I did. But after many years of uncontrolled bg without a pump, I was satisfied with that number. Then after 3 months on t:slim, my a1c dropped to 7.2 and is still dropping. I'm assuming it's because the t:slim uses negative pressure and delivers smaller pulses of insulin, which the body is better able to absorb. That's the biggest selling point for me: how does this or that pump help control my diabetes? Some will say they are all the same, but I've discovered they aren't.
Regarding your supplies... if you use the Medtronic infusion sets that have the luer lock, you can use them with the t:slim. You can't use the reservoirs, however.
When making your decision, always remember to do what suits you best.
With that said, here are some of the positives I've encountered whilst using the T:Slim as a first-time pumper:
Large Insulin Reservoir
No Endless Scrolling with Menus or Profiles
Nominal Impact Resistance (My Rep loudly knocked it on the table!)
Insulin calculations down to .01 denomination (Ex: 11.36 Units)
Modern, Sleek Profile
Multiple Timed Settings per each profile (Pump Standard?)
Extended Bolus (Pump Standard?)
Quick Bolus measured in Units or Carbs (Your choice)
Insulin On-Board displayed on Home Screen
Does not easily "unlock" itself like phones or other touchscreen devices
The device itself feels "Solid"
No batteries- Recharge via mini-usb and supposed to last 7 days
*I say "Pump Standard?" as I am not sure if these features are available on other pumps*
Here's what I've heard as far as complaints go:
Priming takes twice, if not thrice as long as other pumps
Reservoir truly only holds 240+ units after 300 Unit fill (not counting what's in your tubing)
Touch Screen is difficult for persons not used to touch screen devices
No correction suggested when BG is below target and above 70
Paper and plastic waste is more than that of other pumps
Can't visually see insulin in cartridge (Cartridge is Black)
Rechargeable, doesn't use batteries (Personal preference, I guess)
The only ones that really bother me are the unused insulin and the priming process (alleviated with planning of course). I go into Insulin conservation mode whenever I'm changing cartridges/infusion sets, and I usually dial down the carbs a bit if my BG is low. My generation practically grew up with touchscreen development, so that's a non-issue for me. All in all, I'm glad I chose the t:Slim, as it's definitely the most modern pump available.
I just love this forum!! I can always count on THE BEST responses from folks! You guys are the best! Rudy so did you NOT post your overview or was this your overview?? If not, I would also love to see it. Grandma, you have just about convinced me. I just hope I can convince my hubby of the $500 more to spend. Seems worth it to me. Better control is what it is all about. I guess I've just become comfortable with the Minimed, but they really haven't technologically done as much as Tandem it doesn't seem like. I also have been reading the forum for t:slim and I like how people are saying how easy it is to figure out if you have been pumping before. I was a little initimidated to have to be on another learning curve. I wonder if what I'm using is the luer lock? I'll have to investigate that.
Thank you Rudy. I will definitely use this as I make my decision. Very helpful!!
If you're using the Paradigm, it's not the luer lock. It's a proprietary lock, and not usable with any other pump.
I used Medtronic for 12 years, and it IS a good pump. Just clunky. And I find the black on gray screen hard to read. The slim is color, and much lighter and I really like that. There are a few minor mechanical bugs in it, like the cover of the USB port will not stay on, but other than that, it's fine.
I've only once had a malfunction (in a year and a half) which was when I overloaded the cartridge, and the pump became unable to dispense insulin. So I took the insulin out of the cartridge, threw it away, and reloaded with a new cartridge. I didn't ask for a replacement, because it was my own fault.
The only other thing I've heard people complain about is that it takes a lot of insulin to prime the tubing, and that there can be a bubble in the place where the luer lock meets the pigtail. I haven't had a problem with that, but several people have invented creative ways to be sure there is no bubble. I found that even if there IS a bubble, it doesn't go any farther than the lock because it's too big to squeeze into the tubing, so I don't worry about it.
Good luck in making your decision!
thank you Natalie. Very good suggestions and advice. I appreciate all of this help so much! Now I have had a OmniPod rep call me and say she has run my insurance info through and I am accepted for only $350 out of pocket!!!!!! I have heard horror stories about the OmniPod. But cost is a real issue here for me.
As long as you have not used a Cozmo, the t:slim work well. Compared to the Cozmo, it is a pile of something...but, that is because the Cozmo was a far superior device, not because the t:slim is bad. I have had several Minimeds in the past. I generally like the t:slim better.
The t:slim WILL NOT display 24 hour time.
It will not adjust for low BS unless your BS is below 70.
It will not suggest carbs.
The t:slim does not have any wifi or bluetooth to hack into, if that's what you are talking about.
The uploading of data isn't bad. But, you CANNOT edit it. This is bad, in my eyes. What if I enter a 35 BG? Well, that's in my record.
So what happened to the Cozmo exactly?? Why isn't it around anymore?
Re the Cozmo's demise: there were patent infringement problems, and a consumer-oriented product turned out to be the wrong marketing focus for a hospital-pump manufacturer.
Wow. That is really a shame. My husband and I were talking about that last night. Switching from Minimed to The Tandem t:slim. Not sure how long Tandem has been around, the t:slim not being around long at all, pretty much brand new, and what would happen if, they just decided to "go away". Things are so crazy right now in our country, especially with insurance and the medical field. But, I must make a decision.
I jumped ship from Medtronic, I had the Paradigm Revel 723. I do not regret the change at all. I find the t:slim the more reliable of the two pumps already, though I haven't had mine very long. T:slim is my third pump. My first pump was an Animas IR1250, which got upgraded to a 2020 when it just died for no apparent reason while still under warranty three years in. I changed to Medtronic for the bigger reservoir when my warranty was up with Animas, but then I've had nothing but problems since about a year and a half in, and Medtronic's customer service has just declined horribly(maybe there's a note in my file that says: "Pain in the a$$"... dunno). So even while still under warranty and after multiple pump replacements, I jumped ship to Tandem. Their customer service has been awesome thus far, they worked their butts off to help me be able to switch, which was no easy feat.
Nothing is integrated in, but it's a solid pump with solid features. Extended bolus option is easy to get to from the bolus screen, so you don't have to back out if you decide you need one. There is a home button so you're not pressing back to get back to the main screen. You do get a One Touch Verio IQ meter at no charge with the pump, which I've switched to and like better than the Bayer Contour NextLink. The screen is a lot easier on the eyes. Which especially helps if lows affect your vision - If I go really, really low, it does mine. I did have to adjust my rates when I started the t:slim, but that was due to some issues with my Revel's reservoirs leaking and I was not receiving what I should have. It does throw the occlusion alarm pretty easy, but I find that's also an improvement over the Revel - It's a lot nicer to have an occlusion alarm you can deal with instead of the meter reading "HI" and having to deal with that mess. The tubing does come out the opposite side than the Medtronic pumps, it took a couple days for me to adjust to that, kept looking at it upside down at first. The infusion set options are pretty good, there are equivalents to whatever you're using in luer lock that can be used on the T:slim. It's not as heavy as the Medtronic pumps. It's easier to cancel a bolus if needed, too - just press the red X. The multiple profiles are nice... You can set everything in them, not just different basal rates. Another safety feature is that if you press the screen three times in a random area, it assumes you're trying to butt dial and turns off the screen and auto locks - came in handy when my two year old decided to try to check it out and I wasn't paying attention(I admit, I fell asleep on the couch).
The pumps that potentially could be the most vulnerable to hacking are the ones that can communicate with other devices wirelessly, t:slim doesn't do that yet, it lacks the hardware. I don't believe it's a big threat yet. Currently I believe the only pump to be hacked thus far was a Medtronic and it was a test just to see if it could be done, but it does put the idea out there for good and bad.
Don't think they can take anything in trade, but they might be able to help with price if you talk to the right person, or at least I think they might be able to.
I don't think any of the pumps on the market are allowed to shut down after 4 years, but I could be wrong. I had heard the Spirit could when Accu-Chek put the first one out, but that was before they upgraded it, I don't think it can now.
As for durability... They gave a bunch of kids some to try to break over a weekend or something at one of the big D conventions. The kids set out to intentionally break them, it took two kids launching them at each other to finally crack one and it was still fully functional afterwards even with the screen cracked. It feels like a solid pump, even given it's size and how light it is. It also comes with a screen protector preinstalled and a nice lightly rubberized vertical clip case.
This is great news from GrandmaKissy! I have been using the T:Slim for about 3 weeks now and I'm seeing much better BG numbers overall. But this is my first pump and since you have already been on a pump for many years and are getting better results I think it is very encouraging. I wonder if anyone is doing any research on whether A1c's are better with the T:Slim? This would be great news for all diabetics.
I don't know about any professional research, but it's amazing how many people in the t:slim facebook group mention their A1c's dropping with this pump. I programmed the same basal rates and other numbers into the t:slim that I used in the Paradigm, and the results were much better with the t:slim. However, a few of the facebook group members said they had higher numbers at first. It's good to remember that everyone is unique and responds differently to types of insulin, infusion sets, and pumps. Apparently you can't use Apidra insulin in the t:slim. Several have mentioned it "jells" in the tubing.
Your insurance will buy you a new pump if something happens to Tandem, but I don't see that happening. My daughter was on the Cozmo, and that is when we got her started on the Omnipod. Tandem is just diabetes and they have been around for 2 years now. My daughter also used Minimed but there is no way I would feel nearly as good about her changing back to such an antiquated pump. Can't wait till she gets her Tslim! Tandem has been awesome to work with.