One of my purposes for getting Dex was to cut back on the number of times I test per day. I use way too many strips. However, because I don't trust my numbers on the Dex I find I still test just as much! I know that we must still test before eating, and are not to trust the Dex for calculating boluses. However, there apparently is a 20% margin of error on the Dex, and I find that too much especially when heading for a low. That could mean the difference of a serious problem or just the thought of "oh brother, I'd better eat something." So I get nervous and I test as much as I have always done. I am usually about 20% off in my readings. Occasionally I am pretty close, but not most of the time.
What are your experiences? I REALLY want to cut back on test strips.
I can't imagine my Dex unit is all that different than yours. I can keep my receiver in my pants pocket several feet away from my bed and turn over as much as I want -- sometimes laying on top of my sensor (placed on my abdomen), sometimes not -- and mine doesn't miss a beat. You might want to follow up with Dex about this. I believe in the manual it says the sensor and the receiver should be within 5 feet to work properly, and surely you turning over at night does not place you more than 5 feet from it, right? I've been well over 5 feet from it and had it do a pretty good job of keeping track of my numbers.
Yes, my nightstand is right next to the bed. It picks up the signal most of the time, but if I'm laying on the sensor it tends to lose signal. You know, this got me thinking. I have one of those thick mattresses, and the current nightstand I have is about 6 inches lower than the top of my mattress. I wonder if somehow the bed/bedsprings are blocking the signal? I will try putting the receiver on top of something to make it even with my mattress and see. Now that I think about it, when I've been in hotels and put it on the nightstand which lays even with the top of mattress, it works fine. Usually I can even go to different parts of my house, sometimes more than 5 feet away, and it still works. It must be something about the bed.
The lady doth speak accurately.
I too keep my receiver in pants pocket but I have to ensure it is in pocket on same side of my body as dexcom tranmsitter/sensor on my arm or it will disconnect. Inside a metal shouded trailor, I see easily see 10 feet separation and not lose tranmitter. At home in a townhouse with units each side and checking for RF fields from 100Mhz to 3 gigahertx, I can see all sorts of other radiators that seem suggestive why my receiver disconnects from my tranmitter while it is in range and me sitting at dinner table and units within 2 feet always. In fact the worst perfomance on disconnects and interference has always been at home in my condo.
On another case, at my dentist where it has worked mostly; one day it disconnected and stayed there till I left and got back in my car and the two immediatly connected - no sweat. I have no idea who was running the diathermy machine, RF energy source or why.
Also, for some, rolling around can compress veins and arteries and cut off Dex readings.
Been there done that. Most annoying. Didn't even scrape tranmitter sensor off.
Due to fact that my BG can sometimes shift around faster than dexcom can track, I end up testing with caveman to see where we are. This has proven beneficial but expensive. A number of times for reasons unclear, I will see receiver showing diving readings, I grab glucose tablets and immediately run a caveman test and low and behold, Caveman stable at 150 or 164 both hands and all is quiet.
False alarm - dive alarm.
All that said, I still appreciate the Dexcom trend data and am able to compensate/cope/translate Dexcom readings.
Alll that said though, there should be on-going improvements in the technology moving forwards and nor is it a crime to question bizarre behaviour that depletes one's piggy bank buying caveman test strips. These test strips should be the lowest cost item purchased in ones care with Doctor's and meds being the larger share.
The issue of filtering plus interstialial delay can be as high as one/half hour or more and released specs provide no better clue than that.
A younger body in good shape on the circulation system could well see shorter delays that may be as good as 5 minutes. i do not as 64+ year old goat.
Michael, I've had the same issues Kate describes. When I started on Dex, there were many nights when I was laying on the sensor on my stomach when the receiver just showed out of range even though it was inches away. Since then I've changed how I sleep and don't put weight on the side with the sensor and never have a problem. Something about pushing on the sensor just didn't work out well.
As far as range, I've found that it generally doesn't go through me well. While cycling, I can leave the receiver in my jersey pockets (in the rear) on the same side as the sensor, and that works fine. If I put it in the opposite side pocket, it only catches maybe half of the readings. I find that I get about 10ft of range if it's open space though.
Do you have lots of springs in your body that might block the signal??? j/k :)
That's so odd that it behaves so differently on different people. I put mine in my lower leg pocket of my NEMA Telonix shorts (lower down on the side/back of my right leg), and it picks up fine, no matter which side of my tummy the bug is on. Makes ya wonder if it's you/me, or the Dex which causes the differences...
I have heard that the charge level seems to make a difference too. If you plug it in everyday, then it might have a better range. I tend to let it drain each time until it says the battery is low before charging again, so maybe that is affecting it - who knows!
Success of performance in my opinion depends upon how much background RF noise in the 400 Mhz band in your area. Secondly, I am told line of sight tramission path and any flesh in way blocks signal.
Thank you for sharing your data and helpful information.
have great day.
As Andy points out about charge level may affect.
As the type of battery technology being used , I believe it is best to cycle battery up and down from full to low charge to exercise the battery. Leaving it every day on charger may be conducive to the "memory " problem hitting the battery in a year flat. That is battery indicateds fully charged but when you go to use it, the battery is suddenly flat.
The only rechargeable battery that loves to work on a float configuration on the charger all time without getting memory problems is the lead acid battery but that is only used in cars ( not new hybrids) and other applications. All the rest are nicads and berillium style.
WARNING TO OTHER READERS: That was almost totally WRONG, with respect to the Dexcom battery.
As the type of battery technology being used , I believe it is best to cycle battery up and down from full to low charge to exercise the battery.
I suspect that Dexcom's rechargeable battery is either a Li-ion "gel cell", or a Zinc-Silver. There is a circuit between the Dex mainboard and the battery; it could be doing over-charge protection, or buck-boost voltage adjustment (an "open circuit Zinc-Silver battery is only 1.65V), or other voltage regulation.
But the important point is: If you want it to last, then DO NOT run your Dexcom battery to a battery state of "blinking one bar".
Oh sigh, the old goat mis-spoke. I inadvertantly failed to discuss battery life and had seen my lithium ion batteries in cell phone drop after 1.5 to 3 years and thought was memory problems mistakenly. Nope number of charge cycles allowed reached.
Well in Lithium Ion - memory problems not issue but one can only do charge cycle so many times and then battery kaput.
If charger is bad , it can damage battery pre-maturely.
It turns out charging a lightly discharged litium ION battery counts against the life cycle charging like a full charge.
Issue still ends up at same gating point - how long does this sucker last and best approach to optimize that life.
I have attached article on lithium ion technology and issues
On another point, the nibbling to death by ducks over the strip usage and Dexcom not really saving much there is not totally wrong which was her main point.
Totally wrong? My goodness!
Even a stopped clock reads correct time twice a day.
LOL, you got me! your friend, Rick.
Good on you Jim...
I charge about once every 4-5 days (when it needs it). Ran my last system 18 months until I lost my transmitter while surfing. 2 months into my new unit (new receiver too in case it junked out before the year warranty...keep the old one as a back up), no difference in performance.