Can I get some info

Hey all,

So I am really bad at keeping up with diabetes tech. I have been diabetic for 17 years now and I swear I fall in and out of keeping in touch with the diabetic community. I really am trying to turn my life around right now and get a better handle on my diabetes. Can anyone help me with any information on these new monitors? What has your experience been? How useful are they? Really I am a rookie on this topic so the more info you can give me the better. Thanks.


Hi Dan,

I use the Dexcom SEVEN Plus ( and really like it.  I've tried a Minimed CGM and found it too bulky for my needs.

There is a sensor that you wear (much like an insulin pump site) with a very small wire that stays under your skin.  The wire takes glucose readings from your interstitial fluid, not your blood.  With the Dexcom system, you have a seperate "receiver", which has the screen you can see the glucose information on, set alerts, etc.

For me, using a CGM has made a huge difference.  I can get alerted when I'm dropping or rising fast, so that I can take action before things get out of hand.  It will wake me up if I fall below a certain number (that I program in).  It shows me how different foods, excerise, stress, and anything else affect my blood sugar.  It's a very, very valuable tool to have. 

I should also note that my A1C has lowered significantly in the past year, and I attribute a great deal of that success to CGM usage.  My last A1C before going on the CGM was 8.2, and the ones after I started wearing the monitor were 7.1 and then 6.5 most recently.

The CGM is not without it's faults - it's another thing to wear and carry around.  It can be frustratingly inaccurate sometimes (although, I'd have to say that about 80 - 90% of the time, the readings are within 10 mg/dL), and some people have issues with the adhesives they use.

If you have any specific questions about it, feel free to ask.  I also have a picture of the actual sensor you wear on my Juvenation profile page.  You can also browse my blog ( for more pictures of what the receiver looks like, etc. 


Hey Kim,

Thanks a bunch that sounds great. I just had a bad hypo reaction about two weeks ago that happened while I was sleeping. This sounds like it would alleviate many of my concerns.

I remember hearing about this technology when it was still very young and in testing. Now I have learned that there are many brands of monitors and this has made me curious.

Here is another question though. Can you base your insulin dosage on your readings with the cgm or do you still need to do a finger prick before giving insulin. It sounds like the monitor isn't perfect so you probably should still finger stick. However, say for example, you are about to eat dinner and you read 110 on your CGM. Would you then need to finger stick or would you just work off that number? Maybe that was a little confusing but I hope you can understand what I am asking. 

Thanks again.



No problem!

There are two answers to your question - but it can be summarized by "At your own risk".

Dexcom, MM, any of the companies that make CGMs will tell you absolutely, do not make insulin decisions based on CGM results!  This is mostly a liability issue for them.  Because the CGM is testing interstitial fluid instead of blood, the results can vary by as much as 20% (20% is what's allowable by the FDA).

However, many of us who feel comfortable with the accuracy of a result may use the CGM data anyway.  It never hurts to test, and I still do very frequently.  The CGM is designed more to help you see patterns, than to eliminate a need for blood tests.

BTW, I forgot to mention - with the Dexcom, at minimum you'll still need to test 2 times per day to calibrate.

Are you considering getting a CGM, or just gathering info right now?


Thanks again for the info. I figured that it would be something like that with liability. I knew that I would still have to test the old-fashioned way, but thanks for being frank with me. It seems as though finger sticking is reduced a bit at the very least. Also, I like the idea of looking at patterns. I am sure it is very easy to calibrate with a computer and it is probably very high tech.

I am definitely considering getting a CGM, but at this point I would say I am just gathering information. I used to live in a fairly rural area of upstate New York and my endocrinologist was not so up-to-date with current technology. I just moved to Queens and I am currently trying to find a good endocrinologist. I know I will need to speak with a doctor more about CGM's but it is nice to hear how they impact the life of other diabetics. It sounds to me like it certainly has made a positive impact in your life.

Thanks again.



I just got my CGM a couple days ago and I already love it! I'm starting to see trends that I never even knew about. It's the best way to figure out what your sugars are really doing and to use it to get even better control. If you can call a Diabetes Educator, they usually will come and show you the device and explain it to you. It's definitely something to think about trying.