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Anyone else see this? Pump fried by airport scanner

Discussion in 'Parents of Children with Type 1' started by DsMom, May 10, 2012.

  1. DsMom

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  2. Caldercup

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    We had a similar experience when traveling recently. We told the TSA agent that the Animas site recommended we go for the pat-down rather than the backscatter machine.

    The TSA agent was insistent that the machine wouldn't harm the pump, and I asked her several times if she was absolutely sure. My son didn't want the pat-down, so I let him go through the backscatter machine.

    In our case, the pump did not have any problems (and it's been several months now without issue.) In future, however, I will insist on the pat-down and hand swipe.

    But I do wonder if the girl's pump had issues already. And is an Animas pump (which is looks to be from the pictures on the news report) REALLY $10,000 at this point?
     
  3. danismom79

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    $10,000?

    I guess we've been very lucky at airports. My daughter always goes through the regular detector and they always hand-check the D bag.
     
  4. swellman

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    I'm skeptical the scanner had anything to do with it.
     
  5. Connie(BC)Type 1

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    I go throught the walk through scanners, at least 4 times a year, 4 different pumps(since 1998), without problems, I've also been patted down, the TSA agents have always been wonderful to deal with!
     
  6. Sarah Maddie's Mom

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    Fwiw, I wouldn't go through a full body scanner with a pump on. We just got back from a trip overseas that included six flights... easy-peasy even with a spare pump that I requested be hand checked. All you have to say is, "This is a medical device" and they either pat you down or have you walk through the metal detector.

    Maybe the teen was not clear on what to ask for, maybe the agent was misinformed, maybe the pump was damaged ahead of time, maybe not... hard to know, but in general I've found air travel to be pretty pump friendly, both domestically and abroad.
     
  7. Deal

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    I sure wouldn't want to have to depend on a device that was fragile enough to not be able to survive a scan. These 'medical devices' are just a simple computer and a mechanical pump. I can't even think of something that would be fragile enough to be concerned about. It would have to be some organic compound of sorts (like us), anything mechanical is simply not going to be harmed.

    Anyone afraid of the scanners best not have a cell phone anywhere near their pump either.
     
  8. Christopher

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    If she wanted a pat down, why ask the TSA what she should do? Just say, "I want a pat down instead of going through the scanner". Done.
     
  9. swellman

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    Even organic compounds would be safe ... there about as much radiation from a full body scan as 2 to 4 minutes exposure on an airplane. So, a 6 hour flight cross country is about the equivalent of 100 full body scans worth of radiation. A European flight about 200 scans. All one way.
     
  10. Deal

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    That is true, I heard that pilots are the highest radiation exposed of any profession. They are also the first to the scene of any airplane accident!
     
  11. funnygrl

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    I've gone through scanners numerous times with my Paradigm without issue. I also am in the boat that thinks the pump must have been damaged already, or just strange coincidence. I am wondering why Animas isn't replacing it. Is it out of warranty?
     
  12. mmc51264

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    First, my son got an x-ray of his abdomen and BAD mommy forgot about the pump. It survived a direct x-ray
    Second, my husband is TSA and he does his best to educate his colleagues, but the machine should not have hurt the pump. The girl should have been able to go through with the pump.
    The part that I find disturbing about the article are the comments. My husband is not a Nazi pedophile. :mad:
     
  13. swellman

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    Oh good lord ... never, ever, ever read the comments. They will make you eat a bullet.
     
  14. selketine

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    I've never read reports of the backscatter scanner harming a pump - I think we've discussed it here a few times. If the scanners had a tendency to break pumps I'd also think it would be discussed here or other lists I see.

    I also wonder why the company didn't replace it unless it was old. How did she know for sure it was the scanner?
     
  15. Beach bum

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    I'm on the "something wrong with the pump in the first place" boat. Think of all the pumps, pacemakers, cochlear implants that have passed through safely.

    Now, when we travel we choose to not have our daughter go through the scanner, but request the pat down. 90% of the time they say just go through the detector and if it doesn't set it off, we won't need to pat down. Then, TSA just has asked us to take the pump out and turn it on and show it to then.

    As for the $10,000, that is really inflated. A pump brand new doesn't cost that much, so I'm wondering where that number is coming from? I could see Animas not covering it if it is still under warranty if the person said that they wore it through a body scanner when Animas specifically states that they do not want customers wearing it through. The person should have (but may not be a savvy enough traveler) asked for a pat down and when calling the insurance company said I completely forgot my pump was on when I walked through that scanner. Play dumb in these situations;)
     
  16. Beach bum

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    Yep, because those people who write these things don't know how to properly function in society. Their way of communicating with people is submitting comments to articles. They have nothing worth while to bring to the discussion.
     
  17. Mama Belle

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    I know the Barry family very well. Very well. And I can confirm beyond a shadow of a doubt that Savannah's pump worked perfectly fine before she got to security and stopped working after. Was it the full body scan or something else? The fact is that the pump was 100% functional prior to the scan and an hour later was non-functional. It was broken to the point where Animas replaced the pump, which based upon my experience they will not do unless there is evidence that the pump is not functional.

    Sandy Barry, the mother of Savannah has worked for one of the nation's leading researchers in type 1 diabetes. Savannah, herself, is a highly intelligent young woman, who despite only being a high school junior has already been accepted to Princeton University. These are not stupid, uninformed people. Sometimes our kids, who don't have as much world experience as we do, are put into positions by people of authority that make them feel pressured into doing something that they know is not right for their diabetes care. It has happened to my child, despite us going through numerous "what if" scenarios. No matter how much we prepare our kids, until they gain some experience and learn how to advocate for themselves, they will be at risk for being pressured into these types of situations. Savannah is merely trying to educate the masses about what not to do with an insulin pump at an airport screening and asking that TSA take better steps to ensure that other teens are not put into the same position.
     
  18. ecs1516

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    Off topic but we have had at least 3 Animas Pumps(between 2 kids) replaced because of button not clicking as they should and other minor issues. The pumps were all functioning still. They are really good about replacing.

    I agree the news about what could happen to your pump if scanned should be known. Those screeners need better training
     
  19. Charliesmom

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    Honestly, I think a lot of people who have made those comments have never been on a plane and have formed their opinions from the negative stories they read.

    We usually have very nice TSA agents that chat with Charlie as they are getting him through. They usually seem embarassed that they have to wipe him down to check for residue. For whatever reason his original and replacement pumps set off the alarm.

    We only had one bad experience with a TSA agent but that was because my husband did something stupid that I didn't know about. The agent thought I did it and flipped out on me and made me get everything and go back through the metal detectors. I thought the agent went power crazed and it took my hubby days to tell me what happened because I was so furious about it.
     
  20. Mama Belle

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    For the record, we have never had a bad experience either. Sam has always just had to do a pat down and is used to it. The TSA folks are always very nice and accommodating. I would like to think that if Sam traveled without me and was put in a similar position as Savannah was, that she would refuse the scan and insist upon the pat down, especially after having seen what Savannah went through. But we never know how our kids will respond to these types of issues until they are faced with them.

    I wish I had the same experience. Sam's pump malfunctioned last week causing her to go without basal for over an hour, leading to blood sugars over 600 and they refused to send a new one stating that it was working now, so the pump must be working just fine.
     

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