Conquering life living with Type 1 Diabetes

Sunday, January 1, 2012

How Dexcom CGM has changed my life.

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The Dexcom sensor has been a life changing device for me.  I have been Diabetic for 12 years and on an insulin pump for almost 3 years.  I recently tried the Medtronic CGM and absolutely hated it.  The insertion was terribly painful and painful for the entire duration I wore it.  I attempted to wear it on my leg and it caused so much damage to my muscle that it hurt for an entire month.  I was about to give up on CGM, that and my insurance was creating too many hoops.  Then on a Facebook goup a bunch of the members were praising Dexcom CGM.  So I inquired with them and then called Dexcom.  They put me in touch with Tim and he was exactly the person I needed to talk to.   He explained the system to me and made it sound great.  I also told him about my Endocrinologist issue and the fact that my current one didn't "do Dexcom sensors".  Tim told me about this newer Endo in Dekalb, IL and how much he really liked him and his staff.  I figured what could be worse, I'll give him a shot.  He was more than willing to listen to me and all my current issues. Their staff is just amazing, more than willing to do whatever they can to help, and I am a NEW patient.  So long story short, I was approved for the Dexcom thanks to all of their help and hard work.  Tim put me on a trial Dexcom system to wear, and the insertion pain was very brief and almost like a finger stick.  Afterward it did not hurt at all.  This was just amazing to me after trying the painful Medtronic system.  After the second trial sensor (first one failed at day 3) and seeing how accurate it had become I slept the best I have slept in 12 years.  I cannot even put in to words how much better I felt in the morning.  The sensor put my mind at ease and I just slept like I wasn't Diabetic.  Every single night I typically wake up and check my blood glucose and for the past few days if I wake up at all at night I check the Dexcom reading and if it is in the range I feel comfortable I just go right back to sleep.  Also recently the Dexcom woke me because my blood glucose had dropped and I was in the 50's but was totally unaware of it.  I most likely would have woken up near 20-30 and that is just plain terrifying for me.  With the Dexcom CGM technology being so much better than Medtronic's, I feel their system would have totally failed for me as I do not have stable blood glucose readings very often.  Calibrating their technology to me would have been a total nightmare.  Thank you Dexcom for inventing this technology and making it so user friendly AND as painless as possible!  This is the technology that has the potential to save thousands of Diabetic's lives who live alone or are driving in their car and their blood glucose crashes without their knowledge.  There are a million different scenarios where this can and will save lives.  No one should have to die from a low blood glucose or just Diabetes in general.  This is the technology that puts my mind at ease about my brother living alone, I have had nightmares about him living alone.  He is on Medtronic's CGM.  At least I can go to sleep and not worry every single night about getting a phone call that he has passed away in his sleep.  This is a real fear for me, a sibling, I cannot imagine the fear that parents have for their children.  Again, thank you so much, from a 12 year Diabetic who is willing and wanting to use any technology available to help me wrangle this disease.  My only wish is for all insurance companies to cover these wonderful devices for all Diabetics and without fighting them for months to get it.  A special thanks to Tim Palmer for all his help and for driving 2 hours, one way, to get that trial system for me to wear, TWICE!  
Originally written on 1-1-12