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Dexcom or mm?

Discussion in 'Parents of Children with Type 1' started by DsMom, Jun 12, 2011.

  1. DsMom

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    Sure this has all been discussed at length before, but I am not good at searching and can't find what I need!:eek:

    We are deciding between the dex and mm cgm and need some help. Please feel free to comment on the following...

    Looked quickly at the online tutorials...the dex looks pretty complicated to insert and looks like a manual inserter...is it manual or spring-loaded? The mm tutorial looks (although it is not really animated) spring-loaded and easier to insert. Will use numbing cream...but do your kids complain of more pain with CGM than with pump?

    The dex says it is only waterproof up to 3 feet for so many minutes...does this mean you can't swim with the sensor on? The mm just said "waterproof" but I could not find how deep or how long. So...how do your kids swim while CGMing?

    How loud can you make the alarms with either one? I have read threads about this and it seems to be an issue that you can't hear the alarms in your child's room. Plus, my own alarm clock is not even waking me up lately!!:rolleyes: I might need a megaphone attached to the darn CGM!:eek::p Do you find the alarms go off a lot? I'm worried I'll be getting up at night even more with the thing alarming all the time.

    I saw that the mm said you can leave the sensor on for 7 days...do you find that to be true? What about the dex...how long can the sensor stay on? (But I may have gotten these mixed up and the dex is 7 days??? Info overload and I'm doing this from my memory of the online stuff.)

    Any and all info and comments appreciated! What to do, what not to do, special tricks or tips?? Thanks!
     
  2. emm142

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    I've only used MM (the "old" sensors which are out in the US, and the "new" sensors which have not yet been released in the US but I'm sure will be at some point.. in this post, everything I say is about the sensors which are currently available in the US).

    I've had generally good accuracy with the CGMS and it has been useful to me in reducing extreme highs and lows. The CGM almost always catches lows more quickly than I would have caught it otherwise (I don't get symptoms, so my only other method is scheduled BG checks).

    Insertion is much more painful than site insertion. I don't use numbing cream, but I definitely would on a child. I swim freely with the CGM on. It's never been an issue, but I get out of the pool every 30 minutes or so to connect with the receiver and check how my BGs are doing. If you go out of range for more than 40 minutes, the reciever "loses" the sensor.

    CGM alarms are very very quiet on the MM. There are amplifiers you can purchase to make these louder. They don't even wake me up when the pump is in bed with me.... about 2 feet away :p so I don't imagine they'd wake me up in a different room.

    MM sensors are currently approved for 3 days in the US but the exact same sensors were approved for 6 days in the UK.
     
  3. nanhsot

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    My son uses Dex, primarily because the sensors last longer and I'm told that the insertion is MUCH less painful than the MM. Our startup we only got 7 days but the last few he got 10-14 days. If it lasts less than 7 days, they will replace (if it's the fault of the sensor, that is).

    The receiver (the part you read info on) on the Dex is not waterproof. At.All. But the actual transmitter that is attached to the person is waterproof, my son swims, bathes, etc with it on.

    My son does his own insertion, so I can't comment directly, but he learned it quickly and easily and does it all himself and has from day 1. I don't think it is as simple as the pump sites, but he doesn't seem to find it difficult at all.

    The alarm does not wake either of us, right now we're messing around with the bed shaker/light flash/loud alarm talked about on here, can find the thread if you like as it bookmarked! Basically it's a receiver thing that picks up the sound of the dex and transmits to a louder alarm that is designed for the deaf, so it shakes the bed or turns on lights or has a VERY loud alarm. We'll see how that works.

    So that's my 2cents. We've only used Dex and planned to from the start (it's why we picked the animas pump too, as they will eventually be linked).
     
  4. Flutterby

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    My DD has been using the MM cgms since the age of 4. We use ELMA to numb so she doesn't feel the insertion. We get 7 days out of a sensor (sunday to sunday).. they are only fda approved for 3 days, but a simple 'start new sensor' gets it back up and going in a minute or two.. and actually, if you calibrate and then hi 'new sensor' it won't ask for a calibration again (it will say that it'll be ready in 2 hours, but thats only for the origninal start, when you see the green light flashing).. We get great accuracy, alarms are loud enough for the day, but are hard to hear at night.. if you put it in or on something when it vibrats you'll hear it better.. Also, I actually like the fact that MM doesn't really come with any tape.. you need extra to keep it in place. I like that I can choose the tape that is best for my daughter. With MM, there is a 40min window where they can have a 'weak' signal and the transmitter will keep all that data, when you get back to the receiver it'll download it automatically, no missed data, with the dex, when you get ??? you are missing the data, it doesn't keep it to download later. MM you get a weak signal warning, dex you don't.. MM has the most alarms, rise rate, fall rate, low predicted, high predicted, low bg/sg, hi bg/sg etc.. these are ALL customizable.. you can even pick how you want the rise/fall rate to be.. meaning, how fast you want it to pick it up.. I love the low and high predication too.. I have highs set at 30m and lows for 20min.. so I can get insulin going, or glucose for a low, before we actually hit either of those.

    As long as the transmitter and sensor are connected, its waterproof.. my dd swims all summer long with the cgms on, never had a problem with it.

    While there is a big learning curve at the beginning and can be frustrating, I promise you that it pays off.
     
  5. hawkeyegirl

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    The MM has more features and a waterproof receiver. The Dex is simpler to use with fewer features. The needles are the same length, but the Dex's is thinner.
     
  6. Diana

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    We've used both.

    For us, the insertion of the Dex is easier and less painful. We use EMLA for both, so that isn't really a big deal. But - in a pinch my son was willing to put on a Dex sensor without it. No way he would EVER put on a MM sensor without it. The Dex was also less "fussy" for us - we rarely had to use over-tape - just slap it on and go so sensor changes were really fast.

    MM receiver is much more durable and is essentially waterproof. It has been left out in the rain for a few hours, dropped in the toilet, and run over by a car on a snowy road. It still works just fine.

    I think the Dex was simpler to learn, but I much prefer the MM. So much so that we stick with it even though we barely get 3 days out of each sensor. I offered to go back to the Dex for my son because he really hates sensor changes. We typically got about 10 days on the Dex. I was really surprised (and relieved) he said no. I really like all the extra options the MM gives you (different alarm thresholds by time of day, data on the receiver, the ability to scroll back through old readings, recovery of the last 40 minutes of readings if you end up out of range).

    The alarms really aren't very good on either. We use the MM on vibrate and put the receiver on top of an upside down metal mixing bowl. That usually wakes me up two rooms away.
     
  7. Gracie'sMom

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    We have used both also. Both are easy to insert, I guess the MM is a slight bit easier for me, but dex is pretty easy. Dex sensors last a lot longer. Using EMLA, dd prefers the insertion on the MM, without EMLA she says dex feels better. Makes no sense, I know, I think it is the sound dex makes when you click the button for insertion rather than the feeling. Either one she finds a lot more painful than with pump sites.

    The alarms are way too quiet on both of them. The nice thing with MM is if you use the pump, too, you only have one receiver. That is very important to my daughter, she did not want to carry dex anymore. Overall we were happy with dex but switched for the one receiver reason and it has been a good switch, we have liked MM, too. We only get 3-5 days out of the MM sensors, though, versus 8-13 out of dex.
     
  8. cm4kelly

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    Use a baby monitor for nighttime

    We have a minimed revel pump and the reason we decided on that pump over the animas was the integrated CGM feature.

    I hear alarms fine during the day. There are many different types of alarms that you can turn off and on and change settings depending on your needs.

    At night, I just turn on an old baby monitor and put if by my bed. I haven't had any problem hearing the nighttime alarms through the baby monitor. Sometimes it goes off a lot - and sometimes hardly at all. Just whatever the day brings!

    I look at my son's pump for his CGM readings but am thinking about getting the guardian - stand alone - to see his readings for myself. I will have to say that insertion is a little tough with my four year old - even with numbing cream. I can't speak to the DEX. We usually can get 5-6 days out of one sensor and we swim and shower with it on.
     
  9. hawkeyegirl

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    I wanted to add that while MM's warranty period is shorter, their receiver is much more durable, and they will really replace it for any reason. Dex has some finicky warranty policies whereby people have found themselves paying for replacement of an in-warranty receiver.

    We always change the sensor on the 7th day, and we almost always get the full 7 days.
     
  10. DsMom

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    This sounds like an excellent idea. But I worry that what will wake ME up will also wake up Daniel and his brother and sister!! I don't want the whole house awake every time the alarm sounds.

    Thanks so much for all of the other info. VERY helpful and just what I need to help make a decision.
     
  11. DsMom

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    This sounds wonderful and scarily complicated at the same time!! Maybe I'm not smart enough for a CGM???:eek::rolleyes:
     
  12. DsMom

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    Very nice synopsis!! There is SO much info to go through and decide on...this is a very helpful "nutshell!":)
     
  13. DsMom

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    Sounds like you REALLY have something against that receiver!:p:D
     
  14. sage68

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    We have used both as well and went with MM in the end, mostly because both of my girls developed nasty adhesive allergies to the Dex. Im actually glad we switched though because i like MM a lot more. The predictive alarms alone are worth it for me. The low predictor has caught many a low for me before they became serious. I also like how you can change your target ranges with MM depending on the time of day. Dex cant do this. I did like the Dex inserter a lot better though. Much easier to use IMO but I am now able to insert MM on my girls with no issues. We do use EMLA with MM, however, which I did not do with Dex.
     
  15. Flutterby

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    Nah, not complicated at all.. just make sure you don't loose contact for a full 40 minutes.. you don't need to do anything, just going near it, it'll pick up the sensor and down load. The only thing you need to do is make sure the graph is set for 40min and not 30min (comes with 30min already in there, but you can put it up to 40min). As for the other alarms, someone will help you set them up and then you'll be able to tweek them when you figure out what works best for you. :)
     
  16. chbarnes

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    The Dex is actually pretty easy to insert. The MM has better software. We originally used the Navigator, but switched to the Dex because of the sensor/transmitter which I think is the most comfortable to wear. It has the flattest profile, and the thinnest cannula. My son had already given up on the Navigator, so I figured I wouldn't get many chances.
     
  17. Wendy12571

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    The dexcom now has basically predictive software. If you set your low to 90 you can also set it to double arrows down or just straight down alarms.
    Wendy
     
  18. NomadIvy

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    This is good to know!
     
  19. JeremysDad

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    We are still fairly new to CGM'ing and have found that it is an invaluable tool. Given a choice, we would take the CGM over an insulin pump if we had to choose one or the other.

    On the 7th day when the Dexcom sensor expires, we just start it up again, like it was a new sensor, and just keep going until it actually fails. At that time, Jeremy puts a new one on. The first 2 sensors were less then 7 days but we were just getting started and needed our own "warm-up" period. Dexcom did replace them.

    Now, if they can perfect a CGM communicating with an insulin pump without user input, that will close the loop and we'll have a perfect system.
     
  20. hawkeyegirl

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    Oh, we could restart on day 7 too. I just hate not knowing when a sensor is going to fail. It inevitably happens at the point when you really, really, really want to have a working sensor. ;)

    The other reason we put a new sensor in on day 7 is that we have two transmitters. I put the new one on while the old one is still working. Two hours later, I change the transmitter number in the pump and start the new one. That way we avoid the warm-up period and always have an operable sensor.
     

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