I’m new to this site and new to the world of Diabetes. I was diagnosed earlier this year in May, and wound up in the ICU for 3 days with a BG over 450. Prior to going to the hospital, I had lost about 40 pounds (the last 10 pounds was in the 24-hrs leading up to going to the hospital).
Initially, I was started on Novolog and Lantus pens. Now, I am using a Medtronic 530g pump and Enlite CGM. The pump has made life so much easier. Occasionally, I have bad CGM sites and they only last for a day or 2. If there are good recommendations for CGM and infusion set sites, I’m open to them!
I’m glad I found an online community for diabetes support!
hi @marshallmac, welcome to T1N, wow you have had some year yea? hope you are getting all the support you need. there is a great book called “Pumping Insulin” which has everything you need for understanding pumping, as well as a handy map of good infusion set sites.
hope you’re doing okay!
Occasionally, I have bad CGM sites and they only last for a day or 2. If there are good recommendations for CGM and infusion set sites, I’m open to them!
It is hard to know just what to suggest since what makes a CGM insertion site “good” or “bad” can be very personal. Somewhat surprisingly (to me) I have found that I tend to have very good luck inserting my Enlites on side/back of my upper arms. However, it can be a bit tricky to do by yourself with one hand. Still, I somehow have managed to do it.
Here is a link a YouTube video with some other Enlite tips. It may not be what you are looking for, but maybe it’ll help? Note: the person who made this video is in the UK and is using the new Medtronic 640G pump which is not available yet in the US. However, his suggestions about Enlite insertion are still valid enough for the Medtronic CGM available in the US.
Episode 17: 7 Enlite Sensor tips
Joe, thanks for the book selection, Ill have to get right on that! I have an amazing Endo team, and support system. However, I only know 3 people with type 1, and only 2 of them are on pumps.
Johnny, Thanks for the video. My wife might enjoy the video as well! I have had the best luck placing the CGM on my inner thigh. However, I don’t want to overuse that site since I hopefully have many years left (I’m 30). The video was helpful, but I didn’t know how to attach the overtape on my backside. My wife installed it around my kidney once and that was a great location, no issues at all. Currently, I have it installed on my outer thigh, which is a good location, but when I am in uniform (I am in the Air Force) I put my meter case in my cargo pocket, which can rub on the sensor.
(I am in the Air Force)
Hmmm. I was diagnosed while I was in the Navy about 37 years ago. I was treated first by Army doctors then by Air Force. Eventually I came to the attention of the Navy doctors and one of them asked, “Is he even supposed to be on active duty?” Different branches of the service have different policies for someone who becomes diabetic while active.
Of course, being so long ago it was a very different time. Obviously we had no CGMs but even the first very basic models of a Blood Glucose (BG) meter were still a year or three in the future. My control was essentially horrible back then. But what amazes the most in hindsight was that I really had no idea how bad it was because I had no data to evaluate it.
Looking back I realize now that I was essentially aggressively “stacking” my insulin resulting in frequent hypos. Eventually I ended up on an ER table after someone found me unconscious on the floor of the bathroom. Afterwards I was told they were about to begin an anti-narcotics treatment when someone found my diabetic medicalert and instead gave me IV glucose.
Times have obviously changed, but I would still recommend that if you don’t already wear one, you get some form of ID. You can’t count on the folks in a military ER to assume you are diabetic if you happen to end up there.
My preference was to go with a wrist bracelet from RoadID.com which has some of my medical info on it. I prefered that because I wanted something very plain that didn’t look like jewelry. But whatever your preferences, I would encourage considering wearing some form of ID to speak for you if you can’t speak up for yourself.
Thanks for the video. My wife might enjoy the video as well! ... The video was helpful, but I didn’t know how to attach the overtape on my backside.
It’s the UK. Folks there apparently don’t get as freaked out by the site of one’s buttocks. But I am also amazed at his flexibility in being able to reach back and use both hands to apply the overtape. In my case that’s just not gonna happen.
I have had the best luck placing the CGM on my inner thigh. ... My wife installed it around my kidney once and that was a great location, no issues at all. Currently, I have it installed on my outer thigh, which is a good location, but when I am in uniform (I am in the Air Force) I put my meter case in my cargo pocket, which can rub on the sensor.
I’m not sure how much contact you’ve had with the Medtronic help line, but Medtronic’s “official” stance on what is and what is not a “supported” insertion site can be a PITA. In the US, Medtronic only supports/allows insertion on the abdomen and side areas. (You can find a chart on their web site if you poke around with Google or whatever). If you have inserted someplace else and later have problems with the sensor, Medtronic will refuse to replace it. My view on this is that they effectively encourage their customers to lie to their support reps.
As you’ve found out, other sites are possible, often even preferable. But apparently the only “allowed” sites are those which were used during Medtronic’s clinical test trial for the 530G & Enlites.
If your wife can help you out with the taping, so much the better. It gives you a wider range of sites to choose from. One thing you have to be careful of though is to not put too much distance between the pump and the transmitter. Even having the pump on one side of your body & transmitter on the other can result in a “Weak Signal” and eventual disconnect in my experience.
I find that I am more likely to run into problems with skin irritation when I insert on my stomach. My skin there is apparently more sensitive. (Who knew?) I have also used my upper thighs, but so far I think I prefer my upper arms. I find I am less likely to be pressing or otherwise disturbing the sensor when it is there. Just be careful to not rip the sensor out when toweling off after a shower. I almost did that in the beginning because I wasn’t thinking.
When picking an insertion spot, think about how much pressure might be placed on the sensor while you’re sleeping. Apparently pressing on a sensor is one (easy) way to get bad readings from it. It can also make it more likely that you will dislodge the sensor. If the sensor probe moves around for any reason you’ll likely get garbage results from it.
I am currently on active duty, but I am being med boarded now, I assume they will give me the boot in early 2016. I am very well managed and keep my numbers tight with strict control, but Type 1 seems to be an automatic medical separation/retirement.
As for the medical alert band, I wear a POW-style bracelet. It says I have T1D as well as my wife’s name and contact info. Additionally, I have the data saved on my phone and it can be accessed through the ‘emergency’ button on my phone while it is locked.
I’ve only passed out once, and it was while I was on pens. I had done some yard work and was babysitting my children (7 and 4) and 2 other kids (12 and 1). The kids were running around the house while I was folding laundry. I woke up to the baby giggling from the dog licking his head. Luckily no one was injured, and I was fine. I told the mother and she didn’t seem to concerned. My wife, however, was worried and then started calling me if she hadn’t heard from me in an hour or if I was even 5-minutes late for something. Now that my doses have been reduced and I’m on a pump and CGM, I haven’t had any issues like that.
The ‘weak signal’ has been an issue mainly when I’m sleeping. I’ll wake up and see that I lost the data. A few weeks ago, I was doing some work around the house and was going to be crawling under it, so I disconnected my pump thinking I would be done and out from under the house in about 5 minutes. That 5 minutes quickly turned into 45-ish. I realized when I re-connected that all of that data was lost, oh well…
I realized when I re-connected that all of that data was lost, oh well…
In the case of Medtronic’s CGM, their MiniLink transmitter buffers the most recent 8 readings (40 minutes). When the pump reconnects that data is sent from the buffer. So if you are out of range for 45 minutes you should only lose 5 or maybe 10 minutes of the data (one or two sensor readings).
The newest Medtronic transmitter, which is still only available outside the US, buffers up to 10 hours. So you still have the same range problems with the newest transmitter, but you would hopefully be less likely to lose data. Not what I was hoping for, but what-ya-gonna-do?