Dexcom G6 – 3 Months In

The Summer of 2018 has shocked most of the UK, by actually being a proper Summer. It was like the ones we used to have when we were kids, you know the sun shone and everything πŸ™‚

They say time flies when you’re having fun, and here I am 3 months since my first G6 sensor, and just a week away from my first transmitter passing to the graveyard in the drawer.

It’s been a pretty busy Summer for me. I’ve lost count of the races I’ve taken part in, making sure that #T1drunswithme every single time.

I’ve spoken at a few different events as well as a recruitment day for the next batch of diabetes specialists for the NHS. I also became a member of the Dexcom tribe in the UK, which is great fun to be part of.

G6
A Few Of The Dexcom Tribe
So I thought I would have a little look back over the 3 months and what’s been good and what’s been bad with the G6 so far.
 

The Good

Accuracy – I can honestly say the biggest variation I’ve seen from finger prick to G6 reading has been 0.8mmol/l. My bloods were dropping fast, so with a bit of lag factored in, I can’t moan about that.
 
Smooth Insertion – This has been the biggest improvement I’ve found. No longer is it a bit of a faff changing the sensor, in fact it’s a 2 minute job now. The new inserter is as user-friendly as anything I’ve seen from others, including cannula inserters. For me every one so far has been pain-free.
Have a look ➑ Here
 
Reliability – Can’t moan here to be honest. I’ve used 9 sensors so far. Seven of them have lasted the full ten days with no issues. The other 2 have made it through to-day 9 and then lost signal. Both of those were replaced by tech support when I called them to report the issue.
 
No Finger-pricks – A big deal was made of the no finger-pricks aspect of the G6 at launch. After the first week I was still pricking my fingers 4 or 5 times a day. Not because the reading was inaccurate but if you’re trusting something that much, you need to be confident with the tech. By the end of sensor number one I went a full 3 days without the need to prick my finger. Now I’m almost at the end of sensor number 9 I only check with finger-pricks when I am about to drive.
The DVLA
I only check when driving to stay on the right side of the DVLA rules to be honest. I think this is accurate enough to be considered for use for driving. A finger-prick number is just that, it’s a number. It’s not the whole picture.
G6
The Only Way To Test For DVLA At Present
So if I check just before driving and finger-prick says 5.7 In the eyes of the DVLA I’m safe to drive for the next 2 hours, irrelevant that my number could be dropping quickly, madness!! In reality when G6 says 5.7 and arrow down, I wouldn’t drive. I dunno about you but I know which I think is the safer option!!
But until there is a change in the law, we’ll just keep pricking our fingers. Clunk,click and prick before each journey folks.
 
Lost Signal, No More – When exercising for a long duration, 2.5 hours plus I found with the G5 my readings would be quite erratic, and on more occasions than not I would end up with the ”???” of doom and be training blind to my numbers. Not sure what’s changed with the G6 but this issue has not occurred in the past 3 months of using the product. Every time I’ve been on a training run, I’ve had complete coverage from the G6, this really has helped my confidence when numbers were on the lower end of the scale. 
 
Confidence – The accuracy and reliability I’ve experienced has given me confidence in the tech. So much so that I will go out now without needing to take my blood testing kit with me, and for the first time in 4 years I can go out without a man-bag at last  πŸ˜€ 
 

Urgent Low Soon – This has prevented more hypo’s than I care to remember, I’m sure my HBA1C this time will be a better reflection of what’s really been happening to me.

G6
Not Too Many Of These Thanks To Low Soon Alarms
 

The Bad

 
Adhesiveness – This has been a bit of an issue. If I sit inside, with the air conditioning on, I’ve no doubt that every sensor would have lasted the full 10 days no problems. Considering we’ve just had the hottest 3 months for decades, this wasn’t the case. I would think adhesive problems have been a nuisance for the tech support guys!

In my world of training runs in 30 degree heat this Summer it’s become an issue πŸ™ 

G6
Getting 10 Days Can Be A Struggle Without An Over Sticker
Tech support supplied me with some extra patches to help with this and they’ve worked a treat. Although after 10 days and over 60 miles of training runs they didn’t look too clever.
G6
Tech Support
 
Compression Lows – Probably my fault for putting the sensor on the exact bit of my tummy I lay on at night, but none- the-less it’s annoying!!! We all know it happens with pretty much all CGM, but some night’s you just forget, doze off to sleep and are rudely awoken by the false alarm.
 

Wasteful – The sheer amount of waste one sensor makes is a bit of a concern. Although as these are 10 day sensors instead of 7, it makes the amount of plastic over a year actually less. I’m hoping Dexcom will look at this in the near future and offer a recycling scheme of some sort.

G6
The inserter is quite a chunk.
 
Security Policy – Not being able to screenshot my own graphs on Android! Come on, do I really have to get another phone and take a picture of my phone whenever I want to discuss a trend on Social Media? I guess this could be an Android thing though 😳 

And That’s It…

I’ve honestly been wracking my brain’s trying to find some other bad points – just to even the lists up a little and give a balanced view. Even having to do this says quite a fair bit about the G6 and its first 3 months in my world.

Long may these experiences continue. Especially as I’ve got a pretty special race coming up next month πŸ™‚ #1yearrunnervarsary

Any support you could offer me in this would be amazing  ➑ Please Help
 

And The Ugly

Nothing to do with the G6, just a few pics of what I’ve been up too over the Summer months. As you can probably guess, it’s been quite a lot of running  πŸ˜€ 
*** disclaimer for my safety***
The ugly does not refer to my running buddy πŸ™‚
 
 
For now 
Take Care, and run everywhere
 
Type1bri
 
***All views are my own experiences of the product I am lucky enough to be using as part of the Dexcom tribe. My opinions always have been and always will be my own experiences, shared with you.***
 

7 thoughts on “Dexcom G6 – 3 Months In

  • Your experiences with the system mirror mine (although I use xDrip as the receiver, still using the onboard native algorithm). Interestingly, the accuracy remains high up to about day 15-18 when the sensor gets restarted, and has been great on days 1-10.

    What is perhaps worth noting is that I’ve found the day 1 accuracy to be a lot better than it was with the G5, which is a huge benefit.

  • Great blog, recently diagnosed with diabetes so it’s great to read about others and their experience! I switched to a more affordable insurance through Insurance Line One to cover my medical costs.

  • Tom

    Just read this- your part about not being able to screenshot graphs…. try downloading Sugarmate. It’s a free app that gives you more data from your dexcom (averages, predicted a1c, etc). You should be able to screenshot that. πŸ™‚

  • Laura Aucott

    Hi – I am currently looking into the Dexcom but as it is a large cost I wanted to check that it is the right thing for me. I have been type 1 for 20 years and my control is definitely slipping – I have to admit I am terrible at checking my sugars now as have become a bit complacent about thinking I know how I feel (which seeing as my control is slipping, probably is incorrect). The idea of continuous monitoring is very tempting, can you think of any reasons why this wouldn’t be the right sort of system for me? Appreciate the review, very comprehensive and made me feel better to see someone who uses it!

    • Hi Laura
      Thanks for the feedback, always nice to know my witterings are helping somebody🀩🀩
      I think that the G6 would be a great move for you, it will at least give you some insights into how your D is getting on day to day.
      I can’t think why this system wouldn’t be a good step for you, it has honestly been the jey for me understanding my needs around insulin and exercise

  • Katie Drummond

    Hi, really good to hear about your experience using the G6 Dexcom. I’m keen to use it also however my iPhone runs off IOS 12.2 which Dexcom have told me hasn’t been tested yet for compatibility however they are pretty sure it should be fine. Stupidly I had just updated my software to the latest iOS version just before I heard about G6 Dexcom! They have told me they will be compatible soon but don’t have a definite timescale so it would be wise to check in on forums to see if anyone else is using it with the iOS 12.2 software? Do you know if it works okay? Thanks

    • Hi Katie
      Ah I am on the opposite team, Android man here lol!!
      I know the Facebook group Dexcom UK G5 and G6 CGM Users is full of knowledgable folks who use Ios
      Also reach out to the official Dexcom UK pages on Facebook ,they are great at getting back with answers etc

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