Dexcom G6 Calibrations

Hi! So I was diagnosed in March of this year, and I have been using the Dexcom g6 since April. Since this is my 9th month with Dexcom, I’ve obviously been through many sensors and a few different transmitters. Up until about a month ago, I had little to no problems with anything Dexcom-related. However, now it constantly says it needs a calibration: I get notifications to calibrate probably at least 20x a day. I usually ignore it, because even when I do calibrate, it then pops back up again later, so it isn’t really worth it. What’s weird is that I haven’t noticed any change in Dexcom’s accuracy - my numbers are pretty much always very similar to when I rarely fingerstick. It just really confuses me as Dexcom clearly states that with the g6 you shouldn’t need to do calibrations, and like I said earlier, for the first 7-8 months of me using the CGM, I never ran into this problem. Also, whenever I put on a new sensor, after the 2 hour warm-up, before my numbers start showing again, I have to do 2 calibrations in a row. This is even more inconvenient, as I normally change sensors around 11 or 12 PM, so my mom or I have to wake up around 2 in the morning to double calibrate to get the sensor started. Again, this has only been happening for a month or so. I think I change transmitters in the next few days, so I’m hoping that’ll fix it… but I’m not super optimistic:(
We haven’t called Dexcom yet, which is our last resort, but I figured I’d ask to see if anyone else has experienced this problem and if you figured out a solution, how and what’d you do? Thanks so much!!
Piper

hi @pipero31 Piper… Welcome to Type One Nation.

I am really confused over your description. it shouldn’t be doing that - it should not ask for calibrations unless you are not entering the 4-digit code from the sensor box which can only be done during setup (starting a new sensor).

from the manual:pages 93-106:
If you didn’t enter a sensor code during setup, you must calibrate your G6. After sensor warmup, you’re prompted to calibrate twice. Then you start getting your G6 readings. You’ll be prompted to calibrate 12 hours later, and again 12 hours after that. For the rest of your 10-day sensor session, you’re prompted to calibrate once every 24 hours.

when you say “constantly” do you mean more than 1x/24hr?

call dex and make them help you… that’s what they are supposed to do.

good luck

@pipero31 Welcome Piper to the JDRF TypeOneNation Forum! We hope that you find a welcome here and information that will encourage and enhance your life with T1D and that you will share your thoughts.

As @Joe said, this issue you are experiencing is something that should be shared with Dexcom and you should follow the advice you receive. The Dexcom G6 is only calibration free if you enter the four digit “sensor code” printed on the adhesive backing of each sensor during the sensor start procedure. Occasionally you may be asked to do another calibration if the program senses that the readings may be off.

My thought for something you might try is find an earlier time of day to get new sensors up and running. I know that from time-to-time, my Dexcom awakens me within an hour of going to bed with “Glucose Falling” because of some position I am laying; I change positions and the thing self-corrects. If something like this is happening to you, your system may be getting confused and wants you to continuously make validation of readings.

Hi @pipero31!

I also used the Dexcom g6 for 7-8 months before if randomly asked me to calibrate several times throughout the day. It wasn’t 20 but it was a lot.

I had the sensor code in and there was no reason why it should have been asking for so many calibrations. Most time I just didn’t and it was fine and just kept giving me a reading. Sometimes I did calibrate it and it still asked me a little bit later.

For me though, it only did this for half a day and then stopped and continued working for the rest of the sensor session. If it has been happening for longer for you, I would definitely call Dexcom and see if they can figure it out.

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When I Calibrate my DeX I calibrate it 2 times so its 100 % right. That’s normal

@pipero31 dexcom is new to us but tonight I had to calibrate at least 5 times in a matter of 2-3 hours. It kept asking me to calibrate so I finally calibrated on my sons receiver and my phone which seemed to help.

Megan @Lucamom, it is a shame that you have had to calibrate the G6 so many times. If the four-digit sensor code is entered in the “start process”, a calibration should not be needed - I have never had to calibrate.

The user manual states that a calibration can be performed by either the Receiver or a mobile device, but never bu both - choose one or the other to enter a calibration value.

This has got to be an unacknowledged software error with Dexcom. “With the factory-calibrated Dexcom G6, users do not need to calibrate the CGM. By entering the sensor code labeled on each sensor into the user’s display device, the Dexcom G6 provides accurate sensor glucose readings” is the official guidance they provide to doctors. I use my phone’s camera to scan the code, but even when manualy entering the code, I keep getting prompted for calibrations every day, or twice daily. every 12 hours exactly.

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It’s a known glitch. We had the same thing happen to us. Called Dexcom, they sent us new stuff, problem solved. Hopefully they’re figuring it out so they can fix the glitch.

Follow-up . . . After some back-and-forth with Dexcom, I think this is a sensor quality issue. After I called Dexcom technical support (https://www.dexcom.com/contact or https://dexcom.custhelp.com/app/callbackform), Dexcom replaced the sensor. The replacement sensor did not require calibration. Started a new sensor yesterday, including manual entry of the sensor code, Two hours later, I was prompted for 2 calibrations. Twelve hours after that, another calibration was required.


Clearly, these calibration demands contradict information for physicians ( https://provider.dexcom.com/education-research/clinic-resources/webinars-and-presentations/calibrations-fingersticks-dexcom-g6 ) and patients ( https://www.dexcom.com/faq/how-do-i-calibrate-dexcom-g6®-first-time)

Until Dexcom fixes this issue, the only resolution is to contact them and request a replacement sensor.

On balance, the Dexcom G6 is invaluable for glucose control, currently far batter than any other system. While there are no perfect products, it is reasonable to expect Dexcom performance to match their public claims.

Dexcom contact should be your first call. Very receptive.