I feel like I’m only ever on here asking for help because of the issues with my daughter’s sensors. We have replaced three sensors in less than two weeks and 8 total within the last 30 days. Has anyone had issues with the sensors coming in contact with water?
We’ve noticed that every time she takes a bath or shower we start getting consistent Sensor Errors until the sensor actually fails and tells us to replace it. I have contacted Dexcom for every single sensor that we have had to replace to get a replacement for it and I tell them the same thing every time. They, of course, have no advice or possible cause for this. We have always followed all the correct application tips and use different brands of overlays in case the cause is the water lifting her sensor up from her. I’m desperate to find answers and help since I’m constantly up at night with her Sensor Error alerts.
Hi Ashley @Agerard1, I don’t think that you, or more precisely your daughter is the only one with sensor problems - although your daughter’s failures appear way too frequent. I’ve seen others on here and on other sites with similar questions. Unfortunately I have’t heard any solutions.
Dexcom is aware too - they hear from you and Dexcom has established a procedure - but that doesn’t do anything for your frustration or anxiety. Does her doctor have any ideas? Is your daughter “small” and possibly not have enough “room” for the sensor wire that gets embedded in her?
I use the G5 so I can’t comment on the application process, but bathing, swimming and hot-tub has not “hurt” my sensors - although I do notice when getting out of hot water I often have a “down arrow” - I think that is because I’m rather thin and could be causing false lower readings which later correct.
She is very small. However we’ve noticed now that she’s bathing a lot more due to the hot weather and playing outside, we’ve noticed these issues. After every bath or shower, the same night we start getting the errors.
I’m hoping I get some help from dexcom soon because this is becoming very stressful considering it’s now summer and she wants to swim and play in water all the time. They don’t seem to be very waterproof for us so far.
When I switched to the G6 I received similar sensor errors while scuba diving. I had similar experiences with Dexcom. They were supportive, replaced sensors, but really did not have answers.
What has worked for me after experimentation is the use of SkinTac, an overlay and site location changes. I started on my arm…and loved it! However, the arm does not work well if I have a dive scheduled. I also cannot use my front abdomen due to scar tissue (leg is the worse for me in any circumstances). So, if I know I have a dive coming up I use my love handles on my lower back and get good results in combination with the skintac and overlay.
Not sure if this helps, but I hope you find a good solution.
hi we are having similar issues here, especially with swimming or hot tub. I have bought every patch cover item Amazon has, used everything from vet wrap, medical tape to duct tape. nothing seems to work. The worse part is then you wait an hour plus to get Dexcom so they will replace… then the replacements don’t come for one reason or another and it takes another call, then I end up with 3 bad sensors but they are replacing only 2. I honestly, want to go back to finger pricks, but it is not my body and not fair for me to make the call. SOOO frustrated with Dexcom.
Kathleen @Katsumcat, I can see it is a difficult situation - but I also see that you are wanting to do what is best for your daughter.
Technology is awesome and works well for many, but a CGM is not always the perfect solution for everyone. It may be the proper move, even if way more finger-sticks are necessary, for you to return to using a BG Meter for a while. Yes, I know what that is like - for years, I did at least 8 BG Checks every day - often 10. What it may come down to is if your daughter will tolerate all the pokes into her fingers - or elsewhere.
As a side-note, if you want to use HbA1c as a guide, I had lower A1c with finger-stick than I currently have with a Dexcom CGM; although I must add that my SD [standard deviation] has decreased which I feel is a major accomplishment.
I’m not sure if this is the same thing and I don’t want to hijack the thread, but I am getting to my wits end on sensor failures on the Dexcom. I have been getting them a lot more over the last few months. My transmitter was near it’s end of life so I thought maybe that’s what it was. Then when it timed out I put on a new transmitter and sensor and the problems continue.
I went out of town for a week to visit my Mom and brought an extra sensor. The one I had on failed for over 3 hours so at Dexcom’s advice I put on my spare and it failed to initialize.
So for the next 3 days until I get home I’m going to have to do finger pokes. I did bring a tester and some strips but not enough to do finger pokes full time, so I’m going to have to go down to the pharmacy and buy some. I can’t depend on it. This is unacceptable.
Dexcom told me to call doctor which I did today and am awaiting a call back.
If they can’t get me going with much better reliability I’m gonna dump it and go back to a Libre. I NEVER had these kinds of problems with it. I lived without alarms for 40+ years, so I’m not too worried about that.
I’m mostly venting but if anyone has experienced this or has an ideas I’d love to hear about it.
I am really sorry and I don’t have much, or really anythign to add… but this line… what the heck is a doctor supposed to do? show up with a screwdriver or a laptop and fix the sensor? why can’t they fedex a new box to you? replacing a failed sensor, transmitter, or both is clearly on them so the “call your doctor” has me scratching my head. Sometimes you have to escalate when the person on the phone is trying to stall you or deflect… good luck.
Have you considered the Libre? I don’t work for them but had great experience with it. New insurance didn’t cover it but did Dexcom so I switched. Am seriously considering switching back and paying out of pocket for it.
They are sending me a new one but it would take 1-3 business days to get here. I’ll probably be gone by the time it gets here. I got the supervisor on the phone to try to overnight one since I’m out of town and have no more. 1-3 days was all they could do she said.
They said there is some issue with the sensor and intestinal fluid blah blah blah and that my doctor may be able to help me somehow with finding the right place to put it on or whatever.
If you are still encountering this problem, I might try a couple of things. One is an experiment to see what is truly causing the sensor failure. Is it possible for your daughter to avoid swimming or getting the sensor wet for a week? Yes, it’s a pain, but, to me, I’d like to narrow down the cause, as there could be another culprit. Just for a short time, wrap the sensor in plastic or hold out of the water when bathing. The results could help you isolate the cause, so you know for sure it’s the water.
I agree about trying skin tac and extra adhesive. I have used Dexcom 5 and never had a sensor fail more than once in two years. (I’m now on Medtonic Guardian 670 and water is not an issue with it either.) With Dexcom after the original adhesive would begin to lift, I’d add another adhesive to cover just the edges, not the transmitter. Have you tried to leave the transmitter exposed, so that it has fresh air? I’ve read if a small amount of water gets in under the adhesive, it can can stay wet, but, if it has air, it can dry. IDK, but, leaving it exposed, has worked for me.
Does your daughter have unusually oily skin? Does she use soaps with moisturizer? Shampoo, conditioner with moisturizer? Does she apply lotion or sunscreen near her sensor site? Just some things to consider that might contaminate the site when she sweats. I would also observe her sleeping, as sleeping in an odd position could dislodge the sensor when she is not aware.
I hope you find ways to help. The CGM is so vital, imo. I hope it gets better and you find some answers.
I use Simpatch from Amazon, it’s specifically shaped for a G6. Helps it stay on and no sensor failures. I would also cut out baths, showers are much less intrusive. No lotion, sunscreen, etc around the area. And make sure to clean thoroughly with alcohol swabs before applying a new one.
Dexcom Tech support used to be pretty good. I have a feeling they are now coming to us from somewhere outside the US.
I had an issue yesterday and noticed right off that they were reading from a script and speaking proper English at all times. I figure they must be going off of certain scripts based on the info we give them.
I had a sensor failure after 4 days and needed a replacement sensor. I mentioned I was on a Tandem T slim (in passing) and IMMEDIATELY was told they couldn’t help me and I would need to speak to a Tandem representative. Before I could stop them, I was being transferred.
Hi Andy @AJZimmerman, other than my first week using my Dexcom device I hadn’t needed to call for anything until recently and I had excellent and efficient service.
In May I was having a “problem” with my receiver and that was replaced in the customary “3 - 5 business days” fashion and actually expedited and I got the new receiver on the second day. Then two weeks ago I had my first faulty sensor and a replacement was received within three days - I told the agent, after she asked if I needed a replacement immediately, that I wasn’t in a rush for a replacement.
Both times I called the phone was answered immediately once I got through the recorded stuff and answered by who spoke my American Language clearly. Excellent service.
I had heard rumors that they moved their support. When I called them on Sunday, the first time I got a person with a thick middle eastern accesnt. He did all the polite stuff they do and when I asked a question he read me the answer from a script. It was obvious.
When I called back the second time I got a person that sounded American. I asked to speak to supervisor and she too sounded American. She expedited a shipment to me.
My problem is not really with the level of service, just that it’s needed so doggone often.
Next time I talk to them I’m going to ask them where they are located.
I’ve got an update. The sensor they sent me the last time arrived at my Mom’s house while I was still there. I put it on and it worked for the full 10 days without a hitch. A couple of days ago I put on another one they had replaced and so far so good with no problems.
After this one expires I will go back to the ones I have on hand. Hopefully they work like these last 2 have so far.
I’m new to this form. I just wondered if anyone has problems with deployment of the plastic thing that the transmittor is put in. In the last 3 weeks, we’ve had 4 not deploy. This is a real problem, because we use the Mastisol liquid adhesive, which is great, but a real problem when the plastic thing doesn’t deploy. We have to practical break the plastic thing to get it off the abdomen and the needle is sticking out. This happens when you press the orange button & only hear one click. I will say that this is a great system for us. My daughter who is type I also has autism is forgets to put her carbs in and ignores the alarms, but we and her school nurse can see what her sugar is at all times on our watches and phones.
My husband recently got the G6. He used to have the G5 and it worked great but this G6 is problematic. I’d say he’s had about 3 months worth and has had to request replacement about 10-12 times. This week it failed 3 times this week alone! One time his sensor failed and he got dangerously low! When he calls Dexcom, they seem to be aware of the problems but have no solutions. They have to be losing so much money at this point. I wish we could just go back to the G5!