CGM Tips


(irishdietitian86) #1

I start my CGM in 2 days, AHHH! I am so excited....  I need it so bad, my blood sugars have been ridiculous lately... I'm pretty sure it's stress related. 

I was wondering if anyone had tips/wisdom on working with the CGM to help new users be successful with it.


(mcbaio) #2

WooHoo Shannon!  You will be so psyched as you learn the tricks of this sometimes crazy system!

My best advice is to use good sterile technique when inserting...alcohol swab the site. wash hands

before starting.  use paper tape to hold the transmitter/sensor down (to protect it from sticking to other

tape layers when you recharge after day 6).  Use a tegaderm or IV3000 to firmly hold both canula and

transmitter FIRMLY against skin.  And use some sort of good tape (hypafix or flexifix opsite) to tape down

over the tegaderm/IV3000.  I tend to use the 2 inch width hypafix and make a cross over the sensor/transmitter.

YOU want to keep it as close to the skin as possible at all times with little or no movement.

Insert the sensor, tape it down and wait 2 hours before turning the sensor on the pump on..waiting 2 hours will

prevent 'sensor error' messages from popping up while the sensor 'wets' itself.  if you turn the sensor on

before the 2 hours...and get the 'sensor error' message..just clear it...do NOT remove the sensor like the

book says to.  My trainer failed to mention  this..and I was freaking out because I hadn't done anything yet!

By waiting the 2 hours and then turning the sensor on, you will make sure the sensor is wet enough and the

pump is ready to do first calibration.  After the two hour wait...the pump will fairly quickly prompt you to

"Enter Meter BG now". 

Try to make sure your BG is stable when you calibrate.  After the 1st calibration, you will be required to calibrate

again within 6 hours.  After those 2 initial calibrations, it is only every 12 hours, although MM suggests

no more than 4/day.  You will want to  try and time your calibrations so that you won't have to get up in the

wee hours of the morning to calibrate.  The pump will alarm one hour prior to the next calibration...so you might

want to think about that.  It can be quite annoying to be awakened in the wee hours of the morning to be

reminded!

My best hint is to insert at night...sleep with it off..and start it in the morning.  that way it is set when you get up and ready to go!

Good luck and have fun.  Just remember to be patient...it's a slow learning curve for the 1st month or so..but it does get better and better.

You do NOT have to remover sensor after 3 days....when you get that first 'sensor end' alarm..just go in and tell the pump it's a new sensor..and it will shortly ask you for a meter BG calibration.

After 6 days and 'sensor end' alarm goes off...turn the sensor off and CAREFULLY remove the tape and transmitter and recharge.  Be careful to NOT dislodge the sensor in you skin...i put a piece of tape over it if i have to get up to do anything while transmitter is recharging.  i lost my first sensor by just sneezing (it was in my abdomen) and was not taped down).  once the transmitter is recharged, connect again..tape back down....and wait at least 2 hours to turn sensor back on (it's like day one all over again)

after 2 hours..tujrn it on...and shortly you will get the 'meter bg now' message to calibrate.

 

have fun..and be happy!

Stable blood sugars are very important while calibrating!  Plan wisely!

Michelle


(ruthyhill) #3

OK, I don't use the same technique as mcbaio for the initial insertion procedure... but the whole hygiene issue, calibrations, and life span of a sensor are spot on!

One big issue that I had was the removal.  For the pump insertions, I just remove it with my bare hands since it feels like removing a bandage, so when given the sensor, I tried the same.... but man, was it painful!  My nurse failed to show me products like Detachol which are adhesive removals.  Ask for those if your educator didn't go over that with you, they make the removal so much easier :)


(mcbaio) #4

You can call me Michelle (mcbaio).  Call MM and ask them about taping options.  They SHOULD offer to send you a sample pack of tapes/dressings/liquid sticky stuff an sticky stuff remover.  They will also include in the (free) package, a few printed tips that they have collected over the years.  it's a good thing to get...it lets you try the various products at least one time to see if something will work for you.  Call MM now.

My educator also failed to mention the failed sensor stuff..and of course she had already left by the time I started getting them!  I was freaked...but I refused to insert another sensor..so I just kept clearing the message.  I think it happened 3 times in the two hour period for the transmitter/sensor to be ready to accept a BG meter reading.

My educator also did not mention anything about re-using...and it never occurred to me to ask.  I had not been paying much attention to the post on the various other message boards I belong to  when the subject came up.  I'll tell you....it was a very quick trip to the internet to look through archives to find posts about CGMS, and MM CGMS in particular.

The other two servers that I post on/get email from are  http://groups.yahoo.com/group/diabetescgms/
 and http://insulin-pumpers.org/  I have also been known to lurk at http://www.the last site listed has a CGMS section totally devoted to MM users.insulinpumpforums.com

HTH...we can all use all the little tricks from those have gone before us!!!

Michelle


(irishdietitian86) #5

I just started this morning and its not to shabby! I have a question though. When you say to insert it at night and then start it in the morning, do you mean just stick the sensor in me and then when i wake up connect the transmitter to the sensor and do "sensor start"  (eat my breakfast and treat it) then wait the 2 hours to calibrate it? I just learned SO much information today its a little confusing!! : )


(mcbaio) #6

Hi Shannon (and everyone else!).

When I insert my sensor at night, I also attach the transmitter and tape it all done.  I do not start the sensor until the next morning.  This allows the sensor to 'get wet enough' and when i get up in the morning, i do the 'start new sensor' and get a very prompt request for 'enter meter BG" (withing 2 minutes or so).  By attaching the transmitter, the timing period starts (that 2 hr startup).  The only drawback to this is that I don't have CGMS during one night of insertion.  I find that my BGs are typically stable in the morning and I can enter that BG when it requests it....wait 15-30 minutes before eating for the sensor to have some stability, eat my breakfast and then within that 6 hours after 'start-up' can than again be stable enough to enter that next calibration.

It is confusing at first when you first start it!  You will find a system that works for you.  You need to find a time that you are stable to calibrate (not after meals or exercise) and a time when it is convenient to insert the sensor and wait at least 2 hrs while you pretty much do not exercise or eat.  That is why I have found that the overnight process works for me.

On the rare occasion, I have inserted a sensor after getting home from work (4:30PM for me)...wait the 2 hrs for it to be ready to 'start' and need to be calibrated..and still be able to eat dinner after I calibrate and do a 2nd calibration before bed (so that it won't alarm in the middle of the night DEMANDING that 2nd calibration in the 6 hr period.

If you have questions..just ask.  I get the emails in my mail box..and check it before I go to work..and shortly after I get home..and before I head to bed.  I love getting info from many soruces..including this list!

Michelle