It’s wiggity, wiggity, wiggity wack
After writing yesterday’s post, I had some time for some more rational thought, and I remembered the reasons I use the suite of diabetes devices that I do.
- The meter automatically sends my BG’s to the pump
- The meter automatically sends my BG’s to the CGM
- The CGM is built-in to the pump
- The meter is small, accurate, and uses little blood.
- The buttons don’t fall off.
These features are important to me.
- If I were to switch to the Animas Ping, I’d sacrifice feature numbers 2, 3, and 4.
- If I were to switch to the Animas Vibe, I’d sacrifice feature numbers 1 and 2. (It’s also not available yet)
- If I were to switch to the Dexcom G4, I’d sacrifice feature numbers 2 and 3, but the loss of feature 5 would pose a big problem.
- With the Omnipod and t:slim, which I’m not considering for other reasons, I also have to give up a few features.
Only the Medtronic Revel/TerrorSensor/NextLink combo offers all of the above five features. Plus, since every piece of data from every device gets stored in the pump itself, it can generate some really spiffy reports.
Sometimes I need to remind myself of these things so I don’t act irrationally.
Of course, paramount to all of those features is the requirement that the damn thing works. I’ve never heard of any other pumps generating Motor Error (or equivalent) alarms. Maybe they’re just built better. Maybe these malfunctions DO occur, but those pumps don’t have the technology to detect them. Maybe I just haven’t gotten my cursed hands on them. Other than MM515 (aka “Alpha”), I’ve never met an insulin pump that I couldn’t didn’t break.
* * *
My blood sugars on Thursday, after lunch, were up in the 300s. (Confession #1: my pump motor-errored in the middle of the lunch bolus; confession #2: lunch was pizza). Nearing dinnertime, and still hovering in the 300s, I looked at my reservoir and saw this:
Bubbles don’t photograph well, but trust me when I say there were a lot of them in there! Big ones, small ones, short ones, tall ones. I’ve never seen so many before! Did the Motor Errors cause the bubbles? Did the bubbles cause the Motor Errors? Who knows… but I’ve read that Novolog is more bubble-prone than Humalog. Just another reason to ask my doc about switching.
A few hours before that, when I first tested and saw my BG was in the 300s, the CGM was on a downward slope in the high 100-range (but soon after, it suspiciously double-arrowed up to the proper level). I have a few suspicions why the CGM was useless (related to the site, not the CGM itself), but still…
On Wednesday, I read lots of blogs with pictures of Dexcom screens. Of all the blogs, pictures, and dialogues I saw, Jess’s post “This Too Shall Pass” made me think. In what could only be described as an infuriatingly frustrating day (it gets better, Jess, but you know that!), the wrote that “the one saving grace…the brand new Dexcom sensor I put in yesterday morning was spot on from the get go.” These words, by the way, come from a former Medtronic CGM user.
My experience with Medtronic sensors is that it doesn’t accurately report my BG’s above 250 (it’s very resistant – and late – in reporting those high numbers), and then when my BG comes down, my calibration seems out-of-whack, even if I haven’t calibrated during that so-called “excursion.”
It’s frustrating when things don’t work as they should. But I have to prioritize which things I need to work and which ones I don’t need to work (well). And when it comes to the CGM, I suppose I can accept the imprecise ambiguity of…well… (to quote the late Chris Kelly, the Mac Daddy of the early ’90s kid-rap group):
“How high? … REAL high!”
* * *
Next week, I’ll be participating in the Fourth Annual Diabetes Blog Week, writing about topics that I’m neither smart enough nor creative enough to come up with all by myself. This means my ongoing pump sagas will be on hold. But you can still catch all the action (if there is any) on the Rolling in the D Facebook page! Mosey on over and click “like”, if you’re so inclined