Restarting a Dexcom sensor

I’ve never tried to restart a sensor before, but think that it would be helpful especially if that particular sensor is in a good spot and seems to read well. Sadly my sensor is set to expire on Christmas and honestly the day I replace it I hardly ever eat (I eat very little carbs, that is) because I don’t want all those wild readings and incorrect insulin delivery. We’re busy on the 25th and the 24th, so my option is to try restarting on the 23rd and hope I can get those extra days past the 25th without hassle or completely put on a new one on the 23rd.

My question is for those who have restarted sensors, how are your readings after? I know a lot of people say it depends and some have great success and others have a sensor fail soon after. I use CIQ and depend on it heavily because I guess things are still off with me when it comes to basal or bolus so if readings are going to be higher that first day and continue for a few days I’d rather know that and replace it than try a restart this time around. I also have seen people have to calibrate every 2 hours on that restart day and others only calibrate once and it works out well. I’d welcome any tips and tricks - I have sources on how to do the process and I have a test strip set aside to disconnect the transmitter but I’m feeling a little weird about trying it out without knowing if I can expect the same first day problem readings or not.

I use Medtronic, so I can’t comment on restarting the sensor on the Dexcom. My experience is that it varies how the extending of the sensor will work. Some are good and some not so good, however, normally I get at least 2 good days, before it might start telling me to calculate way too often or sensor updating excessively for no reason. It might go another week with good service.

If I have an important event, I’d change sensor 24 hours early, even if I had to end a cycle early. Of course, I’ve had sudden Sensor Updating or change sensor now for no reason on a new sensor. That’s why I always have 2 or 3 backups. Good luck.

Thanks! My main reason for restarting or just stopping a sensor early on Friday is just because of the two days ahead. It isn’t the first time I’ve had to do that, either, which is a little frustrating but I know if I didn’t plan ahead I’d probably be dealing with some stupid malfunction or something while out (I’ll make sure to keep an extra on me, though we aren’t going far from home). So far all of my sensors except the last one have lasted me a full 10 days with good / decent readings, so I hate having to stop any early so it would be nice to try a restart if only it would work out just as good as replacing it.

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My advice is to start a new sensor when the old one expires and not mess around with trying to restart an expired one. For one thing, prying a transmitter out of a sensor while leaving the sensor intact in the skin is NOT easy.

Having seen videos about restarting a sensor (by taking the transmitter out of the sensor and then placing it back), I tried to remove a transmitter from a sensor, just to see if I could do it (even though I planned to put in a new sensor anyway). I was not able to remove the transmitter from the sensor while the sensor was still on my body.

Even if you are more successful than I was, I suspect that the odds of a restarted sensor being more accurate than a new one are slim. I switched from Medtronic to Tandem in early 2022. So far, only one Dexcom sensor has been inaccurate on the first day. All of the other Dexcoms were pretty close to my blood glucose readings (taken when my glucose levels were relatively stable, i.e., not when changing rapidly due to ingestion of food or insulin).

I’ve had moderate success. Popping the transmitter out of the sensor is not an easy task so I have inserted a strip and interrupted the sensor for 20 minutes and that seemed to work OK. Afterwards, the readings are a bit off. In my case, they were high so plan on using a few test strips for a day or so afterwards then things settle down. I have to do this shortly as my insurance is screwed up and I am out of sensors for a while longer.Great luck doing this.Check youtube for the videos on how.

@schnauzer1 I think I’ll plan to just start a new sensor, yeah. Almost all of my Dexcom sensors have had something wonky about them the first day and even two days sometimes, though. Hopefully this one I’ll put on tomorrow is a good one.

@don I was going to use the test strip method if I decided to restart the sensor. I’d rather not see those high numbers just because I’m on the Tandem Control IQ and I rely on the numbers from my Dexcom matching up closely so my pump can adjust. If it reads too high I’ll get too much insulin and I just don’t want that, especially not at the holidays. Maybe I’ll try restarting the next sensor just to see how it goes, but this go around I think it would end up being too stressful. Thank you for the tip!

Everyone has an opinion on this. Best is to just try it yourself. Then you’ll know for sure. :smiley: