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Do your sensors die a slow or a quick death?

Discussion in 'Continuous Glucose Sensing' started by Flutterby, Jun 19, 2010.

  1. Flutterby

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    I'm trying to decide if its my Dh's impatients or what. It seems that when I'm paying attention to the sensor I can tell its dying a slow death.. sometimes I let it go, if its being consistent, but reading lower, then I'll leave it for a bit.. other times I'll just pull it.. But it seems that I go off to work and get a phone call from DH that states the sensor is dead.. nothing leading up to it, its just dead (by the way this happens on day 5/6/7 usually, so well over the 3 day usage.) Or he's out camping in the yard, when they left, the sensor was fine.. but by morning its dead and wasn't 'accurate' all night..

    So, do you see both slow and quick deaths with your sensors, or do they typically always die the same way.. or is my Dh just really impatient and the moment he thinks its 'off' he pulls it.:rolleyes:
     
  2. hawkeyegirl

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    Honestly, we never see them die, because we pull them at day 7. On the few occasions we let them go longer than that, I usually give it about 12 hours of being "lazy" before I pull it.
     
  3. MReinhardt

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    Quick die here... Day 4 of the sensor. Alarming Chell is 80 two arrows going down, deep dive to 58...finger stick 278. On really, really good sensors she can get 4 days, possible 5 days. Very rarely does she get 6 days from a sensor.


    Michelle
     
  4. emm142

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    Slow death, from about days 7-9 on expired sensors. Non-expired sensors generally last a bit longer.
     
  5. Flutterby

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    A sensor never lasts us more than 7 days, because we pull on day 7.. but sometimes they only last 5... I typically see a slow death, I can tell when its coming (if it does.. sometimes we get to sunday night and have a pefectly good sensor), but DH usually see it die fast.. which has me thinking its his impatients and seeing a number not perfect with the meter he assumes its 'bad' and pulls it... actually, he doesn't pull it, he shuts it off and lets me pull.
     
  6. MReinhardt

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    Ever stop to think why the might die after 3 days?! They are only FDA approved for three days! MM has some issues to fix before the FDA will approve sensors to be used for longer time. NOT everyone is able to get 3-4 days out of them, and then expect us to get 6 days out of a sensor. If they go after an approval on the current sensors with transmitter, they they are not going to do their clients well. MM will be replacing many of sensors then.

    We have had sensors only last 2 days, and dying, its nothing we are doing, its the sensors them selves.
     
  7. Flutterby

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    We typically have no problems with sensors that go over 3 days. We usually get 7 days out of them, with some of them going out on day 5 or 6.. we use both expired and nonexpired sensors, and see no difference between the two.
     
  8. hawkeyegirl

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    I wonder why some people can go longer than others. We literally never see them die before we pull them on day 7. Jack wears his on his bottom and they get pretty knocked around too.
     
  9. Flutterby

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    I don't know but I'm sure it has to do with the interstitial fluid layer, the 'meat' on the body.. basically the body chemistry. We do sensors mostly on her arms.. I only do the bum when arms are looking bad because we just seem to have good luck there.. but their is definitely more fluff there than on her arms.. but they usually end up getting pulled/bumped/tugged by clothing.. plus she wears pullups at night (shhh.. don't tell her I told you. ;)) So the reactions with the wet skin and tape were awful.
     
  10. MReinhardt

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    I'm not sure why Chell can only get a few days from some sensors and then can go about 4 days on other sensors.

    Here's an example of what happened last night. Chell is holding steady around 155-150 for the past two hours, with 0.06 IOB. Since she is holding steady..I thought I might be able to calibrate, something told me not too...within a few more minutes of waiting...the sensor took a nose dive, now saying 128 with double arrows going down. Finger stick says she is still holding at 150. So I waited 20 more minutes, recheck the sensor, it now says 68 with double arrows going down, finger stick says 152. ISG 6.28 there was no way to even try and calibrate with an ISG that low, I know for sure it would give an error. I waited the sensor out..and it hung out at 61, with a low ISG of 6.00. Finger stick was still in the 150 range.

    I ended up shutting the sensor off for the rest of the night. Restarted the sensor this am, with an ISG of 16.00 and a finger stick of 152.

    The time of the issues of this sensor...it was only 19 hours old.


    Michelle
     
  11. Flutterby

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    We had a strange and wacky sensor start yesterday/last night.. I put it in, in the wrong spot.. was doing it by flashlight.. won't be doing THAT again.. :rolleyes: ... Anyway.. Good ISIG, calibrated at 138, ISIG was 15 something.. I then get a fall rate alarm.. go clear it.. and leave it.. waiting to see whats happening.. another fall rate alarm and low prediction.. check her, she's 139, hasn't gone anywhere.. So, I calibrated again (I know, I'm a daredevil.. lol) hoping to turn the sensor around.. 15min later, another fall rate.. go clear it and check her, she's 130something.. hasn't moved.. 20min later, I get a another low prediction.. I checked again, she hasn't move.. this time she 126.. so I calibrated again and said to hell with it, I'm going to bed (it was 3am).. sensor was spot on this morning.. I don't know what the heck the problem was last night.. but at this mornings check she was 119, sensor was 119.. weird.
     
  12. MReinhardt

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    Must have been wacky senor night for some! :) I knew if I calibrated, then it would just be calibration error. Oh..this was around 2 am...I havent even went to bed yet...I think finally it was around 3:30 that I finally went to bed. I really was just tired of messing with it.


    Michelle
     
  13. emm142

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    I have a whacky sensor too, which started early this morning. Woke up, SG 93, BG 94, lovelyy, calibrated.

    20 minutes later, sensor is yelling at me that I'm low, like REALLY low. Recheck BG, 72, okay, that's a bit lower than the first time, but the sensor is still way off. Go have breakfast. Go to school. "BEEEP YOU'RE REALLY LOW". Recheck BG - "Nope, not low CGM, I'm 140, go away."

    Sensor just magically popped up to right in line with my BG. Awesome. Maybe it's going to work.

    Couple of hours later: "BEEEP YOU'RE HIGH - 200". Check BG. "Nope, I'm low, 53... WHY ARE YOU WRONG?" About 2 hours later and the CGM seems to have caught up with itself again, but it's certainly not performing by MM's usual standards.
     
  14. Flutterby

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    I hadn't gone to bed yet either.. although I was ready for bed around 11pm.. I didn't get there till 3am.. and woke up at 8:05, kids get the bus at 8:30.. and they made it.. but I still had to run to school and drop off the things they forgot.:rolleyes:
     
  15. Flutterby

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    was the alarm 'ignored' when it first went off.. Kaylee will do this.. if she's playing somewhere and we can't hear it, she'll either completely ignore it or she'll clear it and not tell me.. so I'll finally hear it and clear a high alarm from an hour ago, and she's not high anymore, but on her way down..

    OR

    Could you have dropped REALLY fast and the sensor hadn't caught up?
     
  16. emm142

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    Nope, didn't ignore the alarm, and the number on the graph screen was the same as on the alarm. I did drop pretty fast (fingerstick BG had been 176 20 minutes ago, so that IS a rapid drop) but it took the sensor like 2 hours to catch up.
     
  17. Flutterby

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    I figured you didn't ignore is at you aren't 7 and busy playing when it went off, I'm sure. ;)

    We will see a large difference when she drops fast, but usually doesn't take very long to catch up.. hope its all good now.
     
  18. emm142

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    Yep, it's all good now, although the BGs aren't so much. Seems that the sensor and my BG can't both be on track at the same time. :eek::p

    Oh, trust me, I've missed alarms plenty of times. Especially when it's not on vibrate and I have headphones in my ears.. Bad teenage habit of mine. :rolleyes:
     
  19. dqmomof3

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    Our sensors just die. No warning usually...they just bite the dust. Can be anywhere between about day 4 and day 7. Sometimes we'll lose one earlier, but usually we get 5.5-6 days out of one.
     
  20. rickst29

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    The two brands seem to "die" in slightly different ways.

    Before I begin: I'm an adult, so they don't get "bashed around" much. And of course, I'm ignoring Sensors which didn't make past day 2 -- I'm only talking about the "good ones", when the Sensor and the Site are both "lucky". Got it? ;)
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    The usual symptom of a dying MM Sensor is a failure to show high BG levels. It still reads OK for levels of 80 mg/dL, or 120 mg/dL or 150 mg/dL (at least somewhat; MM accuracy on low readings always stank for me) but it can't get past a plateau. And, as you near the end, the highest reading which it can show gets lower and lower.

    So at an early stage of "old age", it can't show more than 250 mg/dL anymore (even though actual bG might be way higher). But it tracks pretty well with numbers from 80-220. A couple days later, it will be unable to show more than 180 mg/dL, even though it seems OK for readings between 90-170. And the next day, it might not show more than 150 mg/dL-- even thought your Infusion Set was accidentally torn off, and you're actually at 480. :eek: (Unless your bG is always below 150 mg/dL, you'd better quit long before that day arrives.)
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    Dexcom is more difficult to figure out. It also doesn't provide an ISIG (and even if it did, you probably wouldn't be able to use it effectively -- the raw signal voltage of Dexcom changes with much less "slope" than the voltage versus BG curve of Minimed.) It can die quite suddenly, giving good numbers for half of the day and then going to unrecoverable "???" or "ERR1" without any warning at all. But more often, you see the graph become fuzzy:

    Instead of smooth, thin black line, you start seeing a fuzzy one: adjacent readings hop up and down in comparison to their neighbors. ISF and BG don't do that: If glucose concentrations are tending upwards, they will not change direction for just one reading and then go back upwards again. Mathematically speaking, the graph looks like a "continuous function" - yes it changes slope, and changes direction from time to time, but it's smooth, like a rollercoaster track. Not like a stairway, and DEFINITELY not like a stairway which goes 3 steps up, two steps down, 5 steps up, one step down, 3 more steps up... all in the same flight of steps.

    When the line goes fuzzy and you're moving normally (not sleeping on the Sensor), then you probably have only a few hours left.
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    I use Dexcom, not Minimed. When I used to run them until the end, my Sensors typically lasted 15-18 days. For convenience, I now usually terminate them on day 14. That way the odds of getting "Caught with a dying Sensor" at an inconvenient place or time are very low.
     
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2010

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