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Tips to make Dexcom Sensor last longer?

Discussion in 'Parents of Children with Type 1' started by mo779, Feb 18, 2015.

  1. mo779

    mo779 Approved members

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    Just wondering if any parents have tips to make the Dexcom Sensor last longer. My daughter is 5, and she wears her sensor exclusively on her lower back for now (switching side and height each time). I restart the sensor every week when the warning comes up (sometimes before the warning), but it seems that almost exactly on the 7th days the sensor starts to skip BG readings (showing "???" intervals). And pretty much on the 8th day, we just get "???" with no more readings, and we have to change sensor. I read frequently about people easily getting 10+ days of good use. Are we doing something wrong? We use Opsite tape around the sensor to keep it stuck on, so that's not an issue, but for some reason rarely ever get a day or two over 7 days. Any help would be appreciated.

    Thanks.
     
  2. LauraC

    LauraC Approved members

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    We had the ??? happening a lot too. We just recently started using a new transmitter and we haven't had it happen since. I'm not positive that was the issue but we were at 7 months on the old transmitter and they are warranted for 6. We are getting 14 days now without issues. Looks like you've been using the dex for about 6 months, so if it is a recent issue then maybe it's the transmitter.
     
  3. Melissata

    Melissata Approved members

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    On the Dexcom FB group there are discussions about the fact that the sensor gets "worn down" so to speak with high excursions. I think it was the over 300 numbers that are said to be most damaging to the coating on the sensor wire. That is likely why a lot of adults can wear it for weeks at a time, and a lot of kids cannot.
     
  4. Dad_in_Canada

    Dad_in_Canada Approved members

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    My first recommendation would be to try a different body location. We used lower back for several months in the summer/fall last year, and would typically get ~10 days out of a sensor. When the colder weather came, and DS started wearing long sleeved shirts, we tried back of the arms. There we could easily get 14 days.

    That was one foot forward.

    But then I ordered a bunch of sensors (12 in total), and all are from the same lot. Despite still using back of the arms, this batch is giving us trouble, and we often get ~6 days. Dexcom will replace the sensors individually if they have issues, but won't replace them preemptively.

    That was 2 steps back :).
     
  5. hawkeyegirl

    hawkeyegirl Approved members

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    We use the back of the arms exclusively, and almost always get 14 days from a sensor. I honestly can't remember the last time we got less than that. I don't have any special suggestions, other than perhaps trying another location on her body.
     
  6. Mo1

    Mo1 Approved members

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    We use back of arms as well, and easily get 14 days out of each sensor too. Seems more accurate in the second week. I've wanted to let it go longer but will try that out in the summer when she's not in school.
     
  7. steph

    steph Approved members

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    Same here. We use backs of arms for my 4yo and usually get at least 2 weeks. When we tried tummy or tush we were usually getting 7-10 days.
     
  8. mo779

    mo779 Approved members

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    Thanks for all the replies. Seems like maybe trying a different location is the first step to take. Will have to convince my daughter for that first. Will post how it goes. Thanks.
     
  9. dpr

    dpr Approved members

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    We use the tummy area and almost always get 14-16 days. The second week also seems more accurate for us too. Bad highs definitely seem to shorten their life.
     
  10. missmakaliasmomma

    missmakaliasmomma Approved members

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    I honestly can't eep track of how many times I start and stop the same sensor. I'm convinced we went three weeks one time. My daughter is 6 and wears it exclusively on her arm.. Maybe that would make a difference?
     

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