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Help with DexCom Seven Plus

Discussion in 'Parents of Children with Type 1' started by nighshade, Feb 8, 2012.

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  1. nighshade

    nighshade New Member

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    My little nephew (8 y.o.) was recently diagnosed with type I diabetes. My brother and his wife researched the diabetes forums and came to conclusion that DexCom Seven Plus is one of the best glucose meter on the market. However, the problem is that in Russia (where they live) this device is currently not available. It has been tested and all, but they still don't sell it there. I live in US and have been asked to help. I made my research and called several hot lines, where I have been told that I need a physician order to purchase the Starter Kit. I assumed that prescription from the overseas doctor wouldn't work and also I would probably have to buy using my name so then I'd be able to send it to my family. Is that even possible? I'm very eager to help and I want my nephew to live as comfortable as he possibly can but I'm not sure if there is something I can do.
    I'd appreciate any information regarding the matter.
     
  2. TheFormerLantusFiend

    TheFormerLantusFiend Approved members

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    Things to know:
    The Dexcom is not a blood glucose meter, it is a continuous monitor that is used with sensors and you need to also have a blood glucose meter in order to calibrate it every day.
    In the world, there are three companies making continuous blood glucose monitors. Two are available in the US: Dexcom and Minimed (which makes the Guardian, the Revel, etc). A third, which is just as good, is available only outside the US, the Navigator. Minimed is available in the most places internationally.

    I would not bother trying to get the Dexcom if there won't continually be a way to get supplies, because you will keep needing new sensors and because it breaks fairly often. Mine has been replaced three times in 16 months.
     
  3. nighshade

    nighshade New Member

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    Thank you, LantusFiend! I am sure they know about the DexCom way more than I do, I was just asked to help acquire it but I'll certainly will tell them about alternatives. I actually found Abbot FreeStyle Navigator, but it's almost twice cheaper (which is kind of suspicious) than DexCom and Minimed and seems to be available only within US, not outside. Minimed certainly seems to be alternative but in Russia it costs around 6,500 USD (while in US, same product is $2,500 at most) :( In these circumstances, DexCom seems to be the best, it also has the best reviews and seems to be not bad value...
    I would certainly keep sending the supplies to them, and I know that some people manage to send devices and supplies for diabetes and send them abroad to their relatives but I don't understand how.
     
  4. nanhsot

    nanhsot Approved members

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    The Dexcom does not replace blood sugar testing and it is NOT a glucose meter. In fact, it will not work without a glucose meter so you need to make sure they have a good accurate meter before you add anything to their needs.

    The Dexcom is a continuous glucose monitor and you must input accurate glucose readings twice a day for it to work, so if they have no meter this piece of equipment is useles.

    Also, are you aware that with either a glucose meter OR the Dexcom system there are ongoing supplies that also require prescriptions to continue to use? Glucose meters require strips,and you can buy them over the counter but they are prohibitively expensive to buy OTC for a Type 1 diabetic since testing is needed so often. Dexcom requires sensors, they only last 7-10 days and must be replaced regularly. They are available only by prescription. Basically buying the system does not mean you are done with this favor, you will also have ongoing prescription and shipping needs.

    I do not know anything more about shipping to another country so cannot help, but I do know that all of the Dexcom (the starter kit and the ongoing sensor needs) all require a physician's order and are very expensive without insurance. If you file under your name using your insurance that could considered medical fraud/abuse and that could get you into trouble.

    What I think is needed at this point is a good blood sugar meter with strips they can buy in Russia. Do they come to the states at any point? If so, they could see an MD here and get the needed prescriptions, and you could then help with the shipping at that point.

    I know we've got a few parents here who live in places it's a challenge to find supplies, so hopefully someone will have more concrete advice for you. Good luck.
     
  5. emm142

    emm142 Approved members

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    I don't think they said anywhere that they didn't have a BG meter... I'm sure that in Russia they have access to that kind of thing - it's a big leap to go from the Dexcom being unavailable to thinking that they don't have a meter at all. :confused: In principle I think Russia even has free healthcare (after taxes), so I think they should have access to that.

    But yes, I think that if they want a Dexcom in particular then they would have to see a physician in the US. The Medtronic CGMS is probably available in Russia though - any particular reason why that is less appealing than Dexcom?
     
  6. nanhsot

    nanhsot Approved members

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    I hope so, I was mostly responding to the comment that the Dexcom was "the best glucose METER". I'm not sure if that's just confusion or if they think that the Dex can serve as a meter, so I wanted to clarify that issue.

    Hopefully they have access to meters and strips.
     
  7. emm142

    emm142 Approved members

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    Ah, okay. I was assuming that was just a confusion in terminology. I hope they do as well.
     
  8. nighshade

    nighshade New Member

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    nanhost, Well, I admit I might have used wrong terminology since I really don't know much about all that but I underline one more time that my brother and his wife made a research and came to conclusion that this device is what they need and they probably know how to use it as well.
    I doubt there is a way to fake diabetes, so no way I can get physician's order on the device and that was never even considered. Yes, healthcare in Russia is free but the issue is that DexCom is not Russian "FDA" approved yet and as I already wrote Minimed that is available costs $6500 there (against $2000 here). I really don't want to argue or anything but issue regarding "meter" was addressed in second comment by LantusFiend and I stated that I am not quite competent in the matter. Maybe I'm exaggerating but I don't really like when people talk about Russia like of a third world country (simply because it's so not true). We are talking about medical device that is not available in Russia due to some legal issues (and hopefully will be soon); this could have happened if I was trying to buy some, let's say FDA not approved Korean device/medication in United States. I highly doubt that somebody would have ask: "Do you have access to bandages over there?" They are trying to find the way to acquire this particular device because alternatives (that do exist) do not satisfy their price range (Minimed) or for some other reasons seem to be not good enough.
    emm142, To be honest, I have no idea why do they want DexCom that bad. It seems to have amazing reviews all over the Russian diabetic forums. It also sees to be suitable for children and that is quite important factor as well. Some got DexCom as part of the product testing (but as I mentioned it still didn't get approved in the country), others somehow buy it from States and other countries. Everybody seems to be extremely happy. Thanks a lot for all the information, I'd certainly will pass it on.
     
  9. nanhsot

    nanhsot Approved members

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    My apologies if anything I said made it seem like I lacked respect for Russia or it's medical technology. I can't imagine what I said that implied that, as I know next to nothing about it and I can't recall saying anything but information regarding what is needed to keep Dexcom up and going. I wanted to make sure you understood that the Dex is not a one time purchase; if you are able to buy it here and ship it you will also need to regularly ship new sensors as they are consumable.

    The terminology can be confusing and I wanted to make sure they had what they needed to utilize the system in question, nothing more nor less was meant. I wanted you to know that they do need a meter before a cgm; I'm sure they have one, just wanted to eduate you before you started purchasing anything.

    Good luck in your pursuit, it is a wonderful technology and one I feel everyone should have access to. Hopefully either legalities will get worked out or you will find a way to get it to them.
     
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2012
  10. snail_on_wheels

    snail_on_wheels Approved members

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    In many European countries you don`t need a prescription for continuous glucose monitor if you buy it out of pocket. When my son was using Dexcom, I bought it from Finland, because my country`s diabetes market is just too small to be interesting for big companies. Some have also bought it from Sweden. The Finnish company sent me also sensors every month. I switched to Medtronic when the new Veo pump came out because they had integrated pump and CGMS and the cost of sensors was lower. One Dexcom sensor is around 117 eur and lasts 7-14 days, one Medtronic sensor is around 55 eur and lasts 7-10 days (for us, might be longer/shorter for others).

    So I would suggest looking around in the nearby countries if they are sure they want to buy the Dexcom.

    And I'm sorry for my possible mistakes in English, but my Russian isn`t any better ;)
     
  11. nighshade

    nighshade New Member

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    Thanks a lot, snail_on_wheels. That's very useful! I have my doubts now about purchasing and maintaining DexCom exactly, and will certainly share them with my family... Your help is much appreciated!
     

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