My own experience. I jumped in and bought a Freestyle Libre just over a month ago out of pocket. I didn’t want to wait to get through the hoops necessary to have it covered by Medicare, although I’ve since gone through that and have my first order for sensors paid for by Medicare delivered by now. At WalMart, my reader and set of three sensors cost me about $200. Had I continued as a self-pay, sensors would have amounted to about $122 a month if I used them continuously.
However, when I first bought it, my thinking was that even if I couldn’t afford it all the time, just using even one sensor for ten days a month would give me a lot more information than I had by doing the daily fingerstick tests. One could more readily see just what was happening with dawn phenomenon, for example. And maybe I could see the highs and lows after eating pasta so could better determine how much insulin to inject at what time in relation to the meal. It would also be easier to basal test. And all this information could be carried over to periods when I wasn’t actually using the Libre.
The big negative I have with it is that I tend to lay on my side and this makes it look like I have regular lows at night even when it is not really a low by compressing the sensor. But I don’t worry about it. (I’ll see in a month whether my endo gets excited about the 22 “lows” I’ve had in a month.) I soon learned after testing a few times that when I’d been lying on it, my BG showed in the 60s. But when I tested, it was in the 80s or even 90. I also found that if I just waited five minutes and scanned again, it would come back up to a normal reading. So now I don’t even bother to do a fingerstick test when I find it low after sleeping. I just wait a few minutes and see if it has come up to tell whether the low is for real or not. And most of the time it is not. Oh, if the reading was down in the 40s, I’d probably go ahead and test with a regular meter, but my BG doesn’t usually change very rapidly, and I normally manage my diabetes in such a way that serious lows just don’t happen during sleeping hours. Only twice in five years have I had a hypo lower than 54 at night and neither required help from anyone else.
I’m now on my fourth sensor. Since the first one, I’ve already been able to eliminate lows any lower than 60 and to greatly reduce the number of peaks over 180, even though I eat a moderate carb diet. My time in target range (70-180) is 95%. I scan about 30 times a day, so it is just easier to take action before serious highs or lows.