Tandem tslim Cartridge, Syringe and Needle Problem

I have been using the Tandem tslim for over a year and a half. My latest shipment contining the cartridges, syringes and needles included Excel needles and syringes. Up until then the box always contained Becton Dickenson needles and syringes.

I did not think anything of the change until I started using the Excel needle/syringe. I find that loading the cartridge now requires a much greater amount of pressure. There always was some resistance but now I really need to press very hard to get the insulin in the cartridge.

Then today one of the needle/syringe leaked terribly. One might think I did not tighten the needle on the syringe but this was not the case. The leak was where the needle and syringe meet but was very tight.

SO my question is, have others recevied the Excel needle/syringes and if so, have they had any problems with them.

I wonder if the BD syringe/needles were substituted with Excel because of the hight demand of BD needles for Covid injections. If so I wonder if Tandem will go back to the BD syringe/needles.

I was surprised to see different syringes in a recent box (I’m not sure if the actual needles were different), which I recently finished. I didn’t have any problems loading although it did feel odd. I was happy to open the next box which had the “standard hardware.”

They only sent me Excel. Too bad. I’ve always found BD makes superior quality supplies, whether that be alcohol swabs, syringes, lancets, or anything else. I can’t compare, but I did have a little trouble the first time I loaded a cartridge. It took more pressure than expected, especially towards the end. But the trainer said it’s usually just a matter of where exactly it hit the port. She advised me to take the syringe out and put it in again to a slightly different spot, and that did help. I haven’t had too much trouble since. I don’t, however, understand why the syringe and needle are two separate pieces that have to be screwed together.

My theory - I think the separate pieces may be to make disposal easier. I have a sharps container I use for the needle - it holds tons when it’s just those, and the syringe I toss. There may be guidelines about how to dispose of the syringes but I’ve never had a problem.

I’d had the same thought. It does make disposal easier. (Infusion sets are another matter…) Not that it technically requires it. The needles are sharp, but they never go into the skin. It’s a sterilized needle that goes into a sterilized insulin vial and then a sterilized cartridge before being thrown away. So it’s not actually a biohazard. Less so than, say, a sewing needle, which is just as sharp and probably pricked someone’s finger at some point. I do still toss the needles into the medical sharps container and throw out the syringe, just as you’ve described, but I’m pretty sure it’s not necessary.

The nurse at the office where I used to work called me one time and said someone had been disposing of syringes in the trash without capping them tightly. The cleaning people were concerned about getting stuck so she was calling the diabetics she knew to find out who it was and have them dispose more carefully…
Since the people who collect the trash or dispose of the sharps containers, don’t know the history of those little needles I imagine it’s for peace of mind more than anything else.


Actually @Scott , the needles in the box I opened this week, as well as in my previous shipment are BD - exactly as they have been for the past three years.
The syringe has changed to the more superior [in my opinion] to Excel. You may have noticed the structure of the Excel plunger - it is designed to reduce the amount of wasted medication - insulin; also a more clearly marked scale.