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Dexcom problems and customer service

Discussion in 'Parents of Children with Type 1' started by MOM to KELLSE, Jul 7, 2011.

  1. MOM to KELLSE

    MOM to KELLSE Approved members

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    So we are having several issues with our Dex...no arrows for up to 16 hours at a time...lots of ??? marks....out of range signal when it's beside her...and last night we started a new sensor and it shut it's self down after I turned it on to hit start sensor...had to do a reboot...that was a first for that!! (Thanks Tammy E for the help)

    called dexcom today and the customer support more or less told me that the problems we are seeing are normal issues and that I am having to much expectations from it...they where going to contact sales rep to meet with me for training....well that didn't set ok with me so after a not so nice talk with the lady she transferred me to a supervisor who wants to look at our data...I'm all for that accept my computer is in the shop and have no way of downloading on the net book....anyway what I guess I?m asking is...am I overrating Dex and expecting to much from a machine or is what I'm seeing an actual problem with their machine???? By the way we have only had Dex since March of this year! Thanks for the help and appreciate the replys!
     
  2. TheFormerLantusFiend

    TheFormerLantusFiend Approved members

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    When I put in a new sensor, it often takes a day or so to start giving me numbers with arrows- I don't consider that a problem.

    Whether or no ???s are normal depends on what you mean by "lots". If you're seeing three or more hours in a row during the daytime of ???s, Dexcom should be replacing your sensors. I typically see ???s for brief periods on the first day of a sensor, and might have ???s for part of the nights early in a sensor or when it's at the end of its life. If it's every night (or half of nights) that's not normal.

    The only time I had the Dexcom turning itself off (or restarting itself) was in a two week period, when it did it more and more and more, until finally I got a hardware error and Dexcom replaced the monitor.

    The Dexcom has done better by me than the Guardian did in terms of giving 'out of range' messages. What I've found is that it does not give out of range messages if I have it right against the transmitter starting in the half minute before the next number is due (you can tell when it's due by looking at the spacing of the diamonds on the one hour graph). If I wear it on my belt, I get an out of range about 1 in 15 times. If it's sitting next to me, or if I put it down and walk around within the room, it may or may not find me, and sometimes in the night it loses the signal.
    It also may say "out of range" even when the receiver is against the transmitter, if I have it plugged into the computer.
     
  3. MOM to KELLSE

    MOM to KELLSE Approved members

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    For us the out of range and questions are not just with new sensors and having no arrow also...this sensor is 3 days old and I've been looking at it for over two hours and no arrow...it does seem to happen more at night but also does happen during the day also. All of this has been happening pretty much since we got our Dexcom...I called in on our second sensor and another call before this one to report stuff I was seeing since we where so new to cgms

    All 3 times I have been given reasons that these things happen and go through a check list and we are doing everything ok...I guess I am more frustrated with their customer service at this point than I am at the machine.
     
  4. anamih

    anamih New Member

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    Hello I am from Romania and I have a 5 year old boy with diabetes. In our Romania DexCom Seven plus does not exist. I called the Dexcom to order one and said that if you do not live in America or some European countries can not buy a DexCom.
    I asked an American friend to buy me one on the internet but can not because he need receipt. Does anyone know how can I get a prescription from a doctor whith IP number and then to buy this device. If is necessary I pay.
    Please help me, here in Romania all devices for diabetes are very old models can not buy new models that Romania does not have license to import it.
     
  5. kimmcannally

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    Paulla, we don't see arrows all the time. I pay more attention to the graph to see where he is going. The straight up and down arrows, of course, do get our attention. Are you talking about the slanted arrows, straight up or down, or just hardly any arrows at all, no matter what their position?

    We got more ??? at first, then as time passed, we hardly got them anymore. He tends to get them if he is asleep (worst time, right? :rolleyes:) and I think it's because he isn't moving as much and it isn't getting the blood flow it does during the day. (or intersistal flow, whatever :cool:)

    I'd say give it more time, make sure you pinch up a bit while you insert it, and if you are using her arms, try her abs if she will let you.

    Got to run - hope that is of some help, anyway :)
     
  6. MOM to KELLSE

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    KIm...we see absolutly no arrow and that has happened for up to 16 hours at one time...I'm like you I also look at the graph but also use the arrows and like to have them if she is rising or falling....we are pinching up...I pinch up while hubby inserts...we are using the arm and not sure I can talk her into the belly but I'll give it a try.....thanks for the reply....I'll check back in later today to see if there is anything else that might help.
     
  7. Michelle'sMom

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    Glad the reboot worked for you Paulla. :)

    According to Dexcom's literature, the lack of an arrow means the receiver can't make sense of the information it's getting from the sensor. We have times when no arrow is displayed, but it's not an all day/everyday thing like you've been seeing. Like Kim, I don't really use the arrows that much & rely more on the graph, but I do check to see if that it's there.

    As for the out of range errors, the only time we've had real issues on a regular basis, Dexcom replaced both the receiver & the transmitter. The tech said she couldn't tell from the data which had the problem, but there was a definite signal interruption.

    Frankly, if we had to place the receiver right next to the transmitter, we wouldn't use it. I don't expect miracles, but I expect a signal within a couple of feet...which you haven't been getting with any consistency. Maybe we've been lucky, but we get great range & have with all 3 of our receivers, except for the one wonky receiver that never worked right & was replaced. She's been outside, probably 15-20 feet away, & the receiver was tracking fine inside the house. I can place the receiver on top of the computer desk in the living room & it tracks just fine while she's in her bedroom about 30 feet away with the door closed. Of course, I've read on other sites that placing the receiver at a higher level helps with the reception, & my computer desk is a 5 1/2 foot tall armoire, so maybe that explains it.

    As for the ???s, we don't see those often, although we did have one batch of 3 boxes from the same lot where we had almost constant ???s & failure errors after 3 or 4 days. We did see them more often before we started securing the Dexcom with Skin Tac underneath & taping the adhesive patch down. We do this from day 1 because we have issues with the adhesive coming loose. Usually we see them either at night when she's been laying on the sensor, after one of her marathon showers/baths or swimming, or when the sensor is dying. In the case of showers/baths/swimming, we remove the transmitter & check for moisture then wipe both the underside of the transmitter & the pad on the sensor with an alcohol swab & let it air dry before replacing. I did call Dexcom tech support about getting the ???s for several hours once. The tech had me enter a calibration, then wait 15 minutes & calibrate again. The sensor worked fine after that.

    I would send the data & stay on tech support until you get it worked out.
     
  8. Lisa P.

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    That sounds to me like your sensor or receiver are having a hard time getting data.

    We get the no arrows thing sometimes even when there is clearly rapid movement -- it is usually because we are not getting numbers in. For example, Yesterday we had a jump of 150 points down in about 40 minutes. When we got our number, there was no arrow, but obviously she'd been in a rapid fall. But there were no data dots for most of the half hour before.

    Makes sure the sensor is clicked in on both sides, of course. I rolled my eyes when someone suggested that to me once, but it actually was a problem one time! Selah pulled the whole device out of its hooks last week on the seatbelt.

    I'm finding customer service at many places really suffering. Long waits, newbies with no info to help you with, staff without the authority to give you the assistance and replace things that need replacing, answer machines, answering services, and computer messages. I think it's the downsizing from the depression. It irritates the blazes out of me, these are not cheap devices and part of what needs to go with them is good tech support.
     
  9. swellman

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    Your experience is not our experience .... at least not for quite some time. When we get a good sensor it's a wonderful thing but we do have to go through a poor sensor every now and again.

    We almost never see the ??? any more but we do occasionally. When we see it odds are we calibrated either at an extreme BG or on a drastic slope up or down. I'm not usually surprised when I do see it because the sensor, most likely, has been wonky. We rarely get out of range though unless it's been far away from the sensor for a good period of time. It does happen though right next to him but it's rare. I have often thought the engineers programmed the receiver to go "out of range" as an excuse for something else - like bad data but I realize that's my paranoia talking.

    If I had ??? for 16 hours I would toss the sensor in a heart beat. If it was happening all the time I would ask for another receiver.

    My best advice is never enter BG unless it's > 20% off from BG readings unless instructed by the receiver. That's percent NOT actual BG so if the BG is 300 do not enter BG unless the sensor is <240 or > 360 for example.

    Make sure there's no acetaminophen in the blood - Tylenol is a no-no.

    I'm not sure what the deal is but we've had nothing but good service from CS. We do get an occasional noob that doesn't know what they're doing but that's rare.
     
  10. Seans Mom

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    Don't know if this could be it either but make sure you're not calibrating too often trying to get the information to show up. Calibrating too often causes it to get confused.
     
  11. momof2here

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    Bad sensors, a whole box.

    I had a whole box of sensors that gave me nothing but 'sensor error 1', ???'s and horrible readings. I spent far too much time on the phone with Dexcom. I wound up with one sensor replaced. I would call on the weekend (2x's I did this) and would have to go through a ton of questioning and then would be told that someone would call me Monday. The first time, someone did call me on Monday and that was when one sensor was replaced but the next time no one called.

    Once I got through that worthless box, we are back in business.

    I did get the receiver replaced due to a receiver problem but the ???'s and 'sensor error 1' continued the entire time with the previous box, even after the receiver was replaced.

    I was told that it was simply a calibrating thing and that the sensor should work - do a fingerstick one hour after getting 'sensor error 1'. I did all that and more, kept those sensors on for much longer than I should have and really think the box was bad.

    I feel they should have replaced all of them as it was one month of no good readings but they only gave me one and if I want to get the other one back that I called on I will have to go through the whole call again b/c I told a weekend person this.

    The third sensor stayed on for 4 or 5 days of ???'s and sensor error 1's and I guess they didn't want to replace it because they didn't call me back as they said they would.

    I spent over 2 hours talking to them and it was really because I did get a bad batch!

    Best of luck!
     
  12. MOM to KELLSE

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    Thanks guys for all the good info!!!! We will keep on trying here because when Dex is good it's so wonderful to have that extra piece of security.
     
  13. MOM to KELLSE

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    It sounds like we have been getting the same customer service person!! lol...I'm glad things are working much better for you!
     
  14. momof2here

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    Thanks so much Paulla! I am glad it is working out now for the time being too... what a feeling of loss, when a CGM is not working properly and each new sensor gives the same bad response!

    Dexcom's philosophy is that if one sensor is bad, it doesn't mean the whole box is bad and I do agree with that to a certain extent but when you spend almost a month of trauma, getting poor results and all you do is call and talk about it, it is a true frustration! I had one sensor that I kept on for 5 days and it had provided me with no numbers that were a true reflection of his bg, ???'s and ultimately a sensor error one. It had been five days of nothing and so I got the time to call them, after I changed the sensor and had similar problems right after calibration (I guess I was pretty much at the end of my rope by then) and they asked me, "Did you call us before removing that previous sensor?" -

    I was floored since I knew there was no need to call and get 'permission' to remove it - it was a horrible sensor for five days, I couldn't believe they thought I should call first. I don't think they realize that this takes so much time out of our schedules when equipment repeatedly malfunctions!

    Yes, now we are back in business, with a renewed sense of faith in the product and a strong conviction that their product does fail, at times, and when that occurs, Dexcom should make life easy and just replace it without lengthy phone calls and interogations! aargh.
     
  15. MOM to KELLSE

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    I told the lady on the phone that if I was calling in for her pump and it had this many problems that the pump company would be sending her a new pump and trying to help....yes I understand that her pump is 100% more important than the cgms but so far all Dexcom has done for me is make me feel like an idiot.....I called once about all the problems also on a weekend and they said they would send a new sensor....guess what I never received that sensor and then when you ask about your call from a weekend it seems like it never happened.

    As I speak dex has been in ???'s most of the night and lost range....I did a restart and it came back to life for a little bit but right back into ???'s...hopefully I will be able to send in the data soon and they can see what is happening....but then of course it will be our fault I'm sure and we are
    100% in warranty that's the sad part!!
     
  16. swellman

    swellman Approved members

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    Are the sensor wires bent when you take them out?
     
  17. MOM to KELLSE

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    @swellman...nope they are straight as can be!
     

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