Dexcom Review

Hello wonderful people! As promised, here is my review for the Dexcom G4 Platinum Continuous Glucose Monitor. Just in case you don’t know what a Continuos Glucose Monitor (CGM) is, I’ll tell you. A CGM is a device that gives you a glucose reading every 5 minutes. This device is not approved to replace finger sticks. You still need to check your blood sugar before meals, when making decisions about insulin, and in order to calibrate the device. The sensor takes readings from your interstitial fluids, not from your blood. That is why it is necessary to check using a blood glucose meter as well. This can be useful, however, for trend information. It consists of three main parts: the sensor, the transmitter, and the receiver.

The sensor is very thin and flexible and is inserted under your skin.

The receiver is a small device that is about the size of an iPod that receives (hence the name receiver) the information from your sensor and displays it on a trend graph screen.

Dexcom Receiver

The transmitter in like the secret messenger between the sensor and the receiver. It wireless communicates with the receiver in order to share the glucose reading from your sensor.

transmitter

Things I Love:

It gives me flexibility and security.

I love how with my Dexcom, I can stop worrying all the time. I can sleep soundly through the night and not have my sweet dreams plagued by the fear of an episode of hypoglycemia. I can go exercise to my heart’s content. I am able to skip a meal or veer from my normal schedule because I know at any given moment my approximate sugar level.

I am aware of what is going on with my sugars at all times.

This is especially important for me because I don’t always feel my lows. Although the number on the screen is NOT 100% accurate, the trend information and the alarm settings make it easy for me to go on with my day without having to think about my BG levels.

It’s comfortable.

I do not feel the sensor under my skin and I barely even know it’s in me. The insertion seems a bit scary at first, and will feel a bit weird, but it is actually very quick. There is a minimal amount of pain, similar to an infusion set insertion or an injection. The whole process of insertion and setup from start to finish takes just a few minutes, once you get the hang of it.

Things I Don’t Love:

It’s a tad bulky.

The transmitter is a bit too bulky for my taste. Maybe it’s just the 16 year-old talking, but I hate that I can’t hide it well under clothes.

The sensor can only be worn on your stomach. 

This is something that I find is just a slight inconvenience because of the lack of variety. It’s not like a pump infusion set that can be worn on various parts of your body.

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Pump It Up

Hey fellow bloggers! I have some exciting news! I am currently researching and looking in to getting an insulin pump and a constant glucose monitoring system! I have been looking around on the internet and I found some I like: the OmniPod (pump) and Dexcom (CGM).

I cannot wait to get a pump. The amount of flexibility I will have and the accuracy is something I look forward to. It’s so frustrating needing to inject yourself every time you want to have something to eat! It’s especially hard for me when I go to a party or have a party in class and I can’t eat anything, not only because it’s gluten-free, because I can’t go to the bathroom to calculate and give my insulin. There will also be more accuracy for me hopefully. My insulin to carb ration is 1:15, and I always have to round down (yes, even if it’s .5 or above). If I eat something that is 50 grams of carbs, I can only give 3 units of insulin, even though I should give 3.33. With a pump, I can give an exact dose every time!  The OmniPod is TUBELESS and WATERPROOF (for up to an hour). It is attached to your body using a cappula and it stuck on with a patch. I would be able to hide it under my clothes and control it with the personal diabetes manager (PDM).

I am most excited about getting a constant glucose monitoring system (CGM). One of the things that is always a scare for my mom and I is worrying about a low during the night and not waking up from it. I wake up at 2:00 or 3:00 every night, but what if I go low at 4:00? Then waking up at 2:00 is obsolete! The system I am looking at tests your sugar every 5 minutes. It takes that data and puts it onto a graph that you can access from the wireless device. The best thing is that it can tell you when you are going to low and an alarm will sound if you go low in the middle of the night (even at 4:00 ;)). This would be such a relief for both my mom and I. We could sleep through the night and not need to worry!

I haven’t decided exactly which pump or CGM I want to use yet… Does anyone have any suggestions? I would really appreciate any comments you all have! What kind of pump do you use? Do you use a CGM? What would you recommend I do? Thanks!