Cutting it awfully close

29 09 2008

I had a system set up for reordering my sensors.  When I put in a new sensor and I only had one spare for backup, that’s when I would call EdgePark to reorder.  That way, I would still have a backup and new ones would arrive before I had to tap in to my last sensor.

Things do not always go as planned.

I called to order and then didn’t hear anything for a couple days.  The nice CSR told me that they were waiting on a Rx from my endo.  Um, what?!?!?  Turns out that Dexcom “changed their packaging” or something and they needed an updated letter of medical necessity.  I instantly paled at the thought that my sensors would no longer be covered and I’d have to jump through a million hoops to get them back.

It took an awfully long time to contact my endo (they don’t have a number that goes straight to a person, only a line where you can leave a message) to know if they faxed the form.  Then an awfully long time to get confirmation from EdgePark that they were sending my sensor.  They were able to ship one box, then it looks like I will get a 90 day supply after that.

I stretched my penultimate sensor as long as it would go, but I eventually had to switch to my very last one.  I have been extra careful with it to make sure it lasts until my new sensors arrive.  I finally got the tracking information today and the new sensors arrive tomorrow.  Today was day 7 with my last sensor, so they are cutting it awfully close…

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Things I would like to see

30 07 2008

As I use all this diabetes technology, I can see a number of things that I think need improvement.

Dexcom

  • A secondary high alert.  I see 2 options with this:
  1. One alarm could be set at 160, then another one at 220 (just for example).  So you would get notified when you went high, then notified again if you went really high.
  2. One alarm set at 160 (for example).  But then, if you stayed above 160 for an extended period (user-configurable), it would notify you again.
  • Different ranges for day/night.  I hung out at 130 all night last night.  This isn’t high enough to trigger my high alert, but it’s not really acceptable for overnight.  I could manually set my ranges before I go to bed and when I wake up, but that’s a waste of time.

Cozmo

  • Super bolus option.  I am currently doing a workaround which involves taking the basal-as-bolus via the “fill cannula” method.  As far as I can tell, the insulin given that way is not calculated anywhere in my daily totals.  Given that they can do combo boluses, super boluses aren’t really that different.

I would think that these things could be easily implemented with some software updates.  They’re small changes, but would make a big impact on my overall quality of life.  Got any other ideas?





Proper introduction

4 06 2008

I know I’ve mentioned it already, but I am hooked up to a fancy Dexcom CGMS. It’s been almost a week and I loooooove it so much. The data is just fantastic and I can’t imagine being without it ever again. Anyway, I apologize for the crappy picture (GiR is not one for taking good photos), but I would like to introduce you all to Charlie!

(Normally I have my devices more to the outside of my hips, but my pajama pants do not have a sturdy waistband, so they tend to slide towards the middle.)

As a side note, Charlie is female. She also has a slight identity crisis as part of her is on my stomach (sensor and transmitter) and part of her is on my hip (receiver).

Having Charlie around is a very interesting experience. At times, I feel like I am totally consumed by diabetes data. Am I high? Am I low? Do I have enough insulin on board? Time to check Lucy. Time to check Charlie. Time to coordinate everything with my regular meter.  It can be very overwhelming.

Then there are the times when my fears and worries are calmed by the beautiful flat line on Charlie’s screen.  I got totally excited when I successfully combo-bolused for Mexican food at a party.  I am relieved when I see consistent blood sugars overnight.  I have prevented highs.  I have prevented lows.  I can go an entire day without being out of range (70-180).

I may feel like a techno-dork who carries around tons of electronics on her belt, but I wouldn’t give up my 2 girls for anything.





???

30 05 2008

I fired up my new Dexcom last night, and it seems that’s all I get: ???

The sensor insertion went fine, with only a small trouble figuring out how to get the plunger thing off.  Waiting the 2 hour startup time went fine.  Then came calibration.

Maybe it’s just because I didn’t know what I was doing, but it took 2 1/2 hours to fully calibrate the darn thing.  I know I entered at least 10 calibration values before it started showing me any data points.

I finally got a couple values, so I went to sleep.  When I woke up, I checked on the graph to see how I was doing.  Well, I have no idea really.  I got maybe 2 or 3 values an hour, with HUGE gaps in between.  What is the purpose of this thing if I doesn’t actually capture any data?

Thinking it might be that I slept on that side funny, I let it go.  I managed to get about 5 values in a row while eating breakfast, getting dressed, etc.   Then, more ???.   A couple more values while walking to work, then more ???.

Is this normal for the first day?  I was really looking forward to having a nice curve to look at, but it’s not much of a curve with only a handful of readings per hour.  I really don’t want to replace the sensor so soon, so I’m just going to wait it out for now.  Any tips or reassurance you have would be greatly appreciated.





SQUEE! My Dexcom is on the way!

23 05 2008

I got the final confirmation today that my insurance is going to cover 90% of my Dexcom and supplies.  They are shipping today and I will get it on Wednesday.  I am hoping to having my training Thursday morning, so I will have little delay.  This is going to kick so much ass!  =D





OMG OMG OMG

6 05 2008

I just got off the phone with my local Dexcom rep and I ordered my first CGMS!  He says he will contact my endo to get the letter of medical necessity thing (which hopefully will go okay), then my initial kit will be on its way.  I’m also hoping that I will get decent reimbursement from the insurance, if for nothing else other than the sensors.  The initial kit prices isn’t too bad; it’s the sensors that are killer.  I’ve heard good things about my insurance, so there is hope.

I am soooo excited.  This is just another step in the process of turning me into a cyborg.  It is awesome.





Recovering

5 05 2008

Well, turns out my high blood sugars were most likely due to happy happy female issues…  So, things are mostly under control again.  I also raised my basal rates a touch.  I know at my last endo appointment, I had been having a lot of lows, so we wanted to back off the basals a bit.  However, now I am finding that I have waaaay too many highs or semi-highs (i.e. 130 isn’t bad, but it’s not a good fasting number).  Constantly battling highs was wearing on my nerves, so I bumped the rates back up.  They’re not as high as they were before the endo appointment, so hopefully I won’t have as many lows.

This past weekend was crazy busy.  So many parties and get-togethers and SWAGing for homemade tasty food.  This whole month will be equally crazy, so I’m trying to figure out what things I can do to keep myself from getting too stressed out.  In theory, I’d like to stop beating myself up over my blood sugar, but I’m not sure that’ll ever happen.  My diabetes is just too important right now.

Next week is my follow-up appointment at the diabetes center.  I’m planning on requesting a Dexcom.  I think it will ease some of my stress about trends so I know whether to fend off a low or a high.  I’ve already got a name picked out, but I will save that reveal until I actually have it it my hands.  Wish me luck!