Medtronic CGM needle/sensor gets stuck in half way

Does anyone else have an issue with the Medtronic sensor/needle getting stuck halfway into you? This has happened a number of times to the point that I avoid putting in a new sensor. The decision to push it in the rest of the way (causing lots of pain!) or pulling it out only to try again has become too much! I love CGM and it really holds me accountable but the insertion of the sensors is scary.

I’ve heard there are new/better sensors out there… but I have a bunch of the old ones and cannot justify spending a lot of money to try new ones when I have these.

Hello! I was reading your comments about your issue with the CGM. I fortuantely do not run into the same issues but, I am remembering when I first started on these that I was told that right before insertion to angle the insertion device a little more towards 90 degrees than the 45 that it is set-up for and that would help with problems with the insertions of the CGM. Do not know if this would help but, it makes a little more sense now. I am still currently on the “Soft-Sensors” and will continue to be until I run-out. I will be switching to the “Enlite” sensors which are inserted at a 90 degree for better accuracy which goes back to the “Soft-Sensors” doing better at about 75 degrees rather than the 45 degrees. Do not know if this will help or if you are doing this and still have the same problem. Good Luck with trying to figure this out and hope you do. CGM has made my Diabetes much more controllable than ever.

I have had this happen. You should get a new inserter. Sometimes after awhile the inserter starts to stick so there isn’t as much force pushing in the needle. After we got a new inserter this problem went away.
The problem I have the most with the sensor is pulling the needle out once it is insertered. It seems like sometimes the plastic between the needle and the sensor gets stuck and it is very hard to separate.

Are you using alcohol to prep and not the sticky IV prep wipes? A Medtronic trainer told me that is a big issue with some people. Despite that, I have had this issue with both the old Sof-serter and new Enlite sensors, but the shorter, thinner Enlite sensor are much easier to shove in the rest of the way, without causing a bloody mess! It’s probably not a great idea to do that, but I’ve also been told most insurance won’t pay for extra sensors: they will pay for 365/366 for the year. That can be enough motivation to do whatever possible to get it in if you have a problem. If you are using the new Enlite sensors and there is a problem with your insertion device, Medtronic will replace your sensor and insertion device at no charge. Mine got jammed and I wasted 2 sensors so I had to call the 24 hour helpline. They can also talk you through any other issues you are having. If they can’t help you (they basically follow a script), ask your doctor to contact the Medtronic rep/trainer. The one for my area is a nurse and I have been able to e-mail her for troubleshooting which can be much more helpful.

I wrote about some of my issues on my blog:

Thanks for the responses! I did call Medtronic after a few times of this problem and they sent a new inserter. I haven’t had any better luck with the new one.

I use alcohol wipes for my infusion sites and CGM sites. I figured out I was allergic to something in the iv prep wipes (large red itchy patches where I wiped…)

I’ll have to try a more towards 90 degree angle. I’m still very nervous to even try this due to past experiences. ( my endocrinologist told me it was funny that I developed a needle phobia after 25 years of type 1.)

I know I need to get the sensor back up and running because my A1cs have gone back up without it.

I am going to give this another shot at the other angle tonight… Wish me luck!

I totally understand the needle phobia. The Sof-Serters are much more painful than insulin injections! When you try the 90 degree insertion, try pinching up your skin. If you pinch hard enough it somewhat lessens the sting, and it prevents the chances of going too deep and hitting muscle (which hurts and bleeds and isn’t as accurate). Just don’t hit your fingers!