Friday, October 5, 2012

Why did I never try this before?

I've been getting 6-7 days out of my Medtronic sensors, which are labeled to last three. When they time-out I just restart them and they keep working until the battery runs out, which is usually about the 7th day. By that time, I'm usually pretty grateful for the extra time and take it out and start a new one.

This week I had a particularly good one. It was comfortable, accurate, and I didn't want to see it go. When the battery ran out I disconnected the battery pack and recharged it. I started it up again and the sensor has continued to be accurate for another week, and I'm still using it on day 12. So, yes, with a battery recharge, the enzymes in the sensor have been able to keep working 4X longer than the stated life.

In my last blog post I was talking about the fact the box of expired sensors I was using were showing themselves to be inaccurate. Well, this new box of sensors are showing to be accurate and, so far, long lasting.

Since I've been following an anti-inflammatory diet I've noticed that my infusion sites and sensor sites don't get irritated, and I don't have to remove them at 3 days, or even 6. I have been leaving them in until I begin to notice a loss of function. If my blood sugars run higher than usual it will often prompt an infusion site change and if the sensors become inaccurate I change them as well. However, I've been getting more time than I used to.

I was encouraged to try to see how long a sensor could work by the reports around the diabetes online community that people are getting more time out of their Dexcom or Medtronic sensors. I know it might be a fluke, but, I'm happy to win the min-lottery once in a while.  Inserting a CGM sensor is still one of my least favorite activities in my diabetic life. Looking forward to the Enlite, Dexcom G4, and a non-invasive sensor  someday.


  1. Wait, what?
    Anti-inflammatory diet? I've seen people use that term to mean a lot of different things, and I've never seen you use it before (I just searched your blog to be sure). When did you go on an anti-inflammatory diet, and what is it?

    I got an average of almost three weeks per sensor with sof-sensors, but that was because I tolerated worse accuracy as the sensor got older.

    1. I've referenced the way that I eat to be anti-inflammatory in the past, but maybe never called it the specific diet. I know there are a few people touting different diets as such. I'm not doing Dr. Weil's version.

      I follow a version of the Paleo diet, which is focused on lowering systemic inflammation. Since I've adopted it and also tightened up my glucose control I've found that my immune system has been stronger and I have had noticeable benefits in my body's ability to heal. I've especially seen this with the devices that penetrate the skin.
      At one time I was changing my infusion sites every 2 days because they would get irritated and work less effectively. These days I just leave them in and often lose track how many days have past.

      Good to know you got more time on Sof-sensors. I will see how far they go. They have a large ribbon and I don't like what they do to tissues upon insertion. I get bleeds and bruises often enough that I want to limit how often I have to insert them.