Im not sure about other diabetics but for me every single airport security venture is always completely awful. I never ever remove my pump so when I walk through the metal detector thing it always beeps and they wand me and it beeps on my medic alert, pump and bra but they still insist on a full body search. Lately airport security has been urging me to go into the full body scanner but I am a little hesitant about it. I've read that I am not suppose to expose my pump to any radiation or x rays and I dont know how the scanners work. So, anyone out there know if these are bad for pumps? I will be going on a trip in less than a week so im looking for some answers. Thanks :)
I'm not a pump user, but if I were, I think I would conveniently forget I read anything at all about turning off the RF and use my pump on the flight as I normally would. But that's just me....
I'm sorry it is so confusing. The MM can only tolerate going through a metal detector, it should not be put on the conveyor under the xray and you should not go into a full body scanner. A good chart on the interferance can be found in this MM summary chart. Note that the the MM CGM adheres to standards that allow it to be used on the airplane at all times, they provide an informational card you can show airline personel. But remember, if airline personel demands that you turn it off, comply, even if they are wrong.
I have had several flights in the month of February. I wear a pump. I disclose that I have a medical device, hold it in my hand, pass thru the scanner. All four time that I did pass thru the TSA I was asked to rub my pump in my hands, then they swabbed my hands and tested the swab in the machine. No big deal. They even let my 5oz juice boxes pass in my purse. No pat down. It was easy.
TSA = Thousands Standing Around. This giant feel-good government bureaucracy is nothing but a money drain on the government treasury. They have never come close to catching a terrorist boarding an airliner.
Having said that, Animas does not recommend that pumps be exposed to x-rays. They recommend that users step out of the magnetometer line and opt for the pat-down. What am awful experience! There needs to be some exemptions put into place so that those of us who depend upon devices for life are not confused with the wakkos of the world.
I've been putting my insulin pumps through the hand-baggage x-ray for many years. I've been wearing and traveling with a pump for 25 years. The pump manufacturers may not recommend it but I haven't had a problem. YMMV.
I also remove all other metal including my glasses, medic-alert bracelet, cell phone, etc. Going through like that dependably without a beep.
The last time I flew, I took the metal belt clip off the pump, left it connected, and put the pump in my pocket. The metal detector beeped and I went through the extensive pat down. I travel with a hypo-alert dog and I am not required (eligible?) to go through the "naked scanner." I won't try to get through the metal detector without disconnecting next time.
I wonder what actual failures that MM or Animas have documented from airport x-rays.
I"m used to it by now. I just love seeing what kind of reaction TSA is going to give me when they find it. Luck of the draw at the airport, sometimes I have to go through the full body scanner and sometimes not. I love seeing the TSA morons wave the scanner and ask "what is that?".
One TSA employee shouted "we have a device here" after I told him I had an insulin pump on my arm (Omnipod). I made sure everyone around heard me reply "You dips***, I told you 5 seconds ago it was an insulin pump, you must be new". His manager was approaching when I pointed at him and yelled "We have a moron here!"
Some TSA employees are good, some are bad....
I am always a little cautious in what I say around a bunch of security guys with 5th grade educations, some whom may be carrying automatic weapons.
Thanks, Michael, for the wake up call. Now that I've learned what may happen, and the worst case scenario, I'm going to follow your lead and use the experience to amuse myself. How's that for an attitude adjustment! lol
Me too, Terry. My ping goes through the hand baggage x-ray without issue. Maybe the pump companies are erring on the side of $ caution as in, " If one in ten thousand gets damaged, even because the next guy put an 80 lb. brick on top of it, we still have to replace the pump unless we say NEVER SEND PUMP THROUGH X-RAY."
Good point - well taken!
I have traveled with my pump - and sometimes it sets off an alarm, other times it doesn't ... it just depends on what day of the week it is I guess. lol When I was still on injections, I had a screener go through my bag "randomly" and ask me if I had either a letter from my dr that I was supposed to have my insulin, or if I had a prescription for it. I said "No I don't have an Rx - I had to give it to the pharmacy to GET the insulin." When I asked my Endo if he'd had any other patients ask for such a letter.. he said he'd never heard of that before. I have had my share of being felt up at the airport, though ... no fun but it is what it is. I guess I'd rather them be safe than sorry!