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Friday, July 9, 2010

Technology Troubles

On a daily basis, how many pieces of technology do I use?  Let's see:  phone, meter, pump, CGM, computer, and TV.  Not to mention all those shiny appliances in the kitchen that are used to make food.  So, when one or more these gadgets decide to malfunction, it can totally throw off my day. 

Take yesterday, for example.  I had put in a new sensor for my CGM, hoping for another stellar week like before.  Everything began like last time:  put in the new sensor before bedtime, dealt with false highs and "???" most of the night, start getting "real" data around 5:00 AM.  I know that technically the data is supposed to come as soon as the 2-hour calibration is done, but from what I've heard via the DOC and twitterverse it takes the sensor almost a full day to get "wet".  But after 2 hours of "real" data yesterday morning, the "???" began staring back at me . . . for 2 hours!!!  I knew this meant there was something wrong with the sensor.  After consulting with several tweeps, I decided to call Dexcom and see what's up.  The very energetic lady told me that if the sensor continues to give "???" for at least 3 hours, they will ship another sensor as a replacement and told me that I should rip that one out.  I gave it until I got home from work, but after 6 hours of "???" I decided this sensor was toast.  Ripped out said sensor and started a new one. 

I think there may have been some user-error going on ("No, really?  Not you, Holly!"  Yes, reader, I'm quite non-graceful.  Please contain your surprise.).  When I inserted the new sensor, I noticed the insertion was a lot smoother following the two clicks of the insertion plunger.  "Hmmm, did that happen last time?  I don't think it did."  Also, the old, bad sensor experienced some . . . ahem . . . activities between the hubby and I that may or may not have been detrimental to its placement (BTW, this isn't the first TMI post of this week.  Right, Elizabeth?)  So, between a not-so-smooth insertion and some non-purposeful tape pulling, the sensor was a dead man walking . . . on me, anyway. 

So, after a new sensor and the typical 6-10 first hours of "???", I'm a real-time diabetic once again.  But thanks to the always helpful DOC, I'm learning all the secret tricks of the CGM trade.  For example, it typically takes a sensor several hours to get "wet" even after the calibration.  Some folks even let theirs sit for 24 hours before data processing, just so they know they're getting good results.  And isn't that the whole point of this little gizmo?  Also, if the placement of the sensor becomes an issue again *blush*, then I might need to invest in some medical tape.  I tried using some band-aids to hold the lifted edges down, but they don't last past the first shower which would be extremely inefficient and expensive. 

My next technological blunder happened to me this morning when my work computer greeted me with the blue screen of death.  After several attempts to reboot, nothing happened.  A call to computer services, 2 hours of conversing with the world via my BlackBerry, and 30 minutes of troubleshooting and I'm back on!  But how frustrating that I literally didn't get any work done for 2 hours because I had no computer access.  Just goes to show how dependent we've become on using technology just to get on with our daily lives. 

We have a beach trip coming up in September, and I'm debating how we'll survive without some of our technology just to make the vacation memorable.  I mean, if all we do is go down there with our laptops and watch TV the whole time, we might as well save the gas money and stay here!  /soapbox 

Anywho, this post just goes to show how dependent we are on technology.  Especially for us diabetics with our meters, pumps, even CGMs.  Now if I can just find an electronic pancreas with an extension cord . . .

 No kidding, annoying paperclip!

2 comments:

  1. So true. I have so many devices and alarms, when I hear something electronic sounding go off, I check my pump, then the iPhone, then the laptop and work my through all the other devices! What makes me laugh is my pump alarm is the ring tone I had on a phone several years ago and when it goes off, I always want to go for the cell phone instead of the pump! Gotta love the Pavlovian responses!

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  2. Glad things are back on track!! There are so many damn things to remember that I usually will forget at least one. I'm glad dexcom is replacing that sensor :)

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DISCLAIMER: I am not a doctor, nurse, certified diabetes educator (CDE) or any medical professional of any kind. (But I did stay at a Holiday Inn Express!) Therefore, please do not use any of my postings as medical fact. I am simply a blogger expressing my highs and lows (pun intended) with diabetes. For changes in your medication, exercise regiment, or diet please consult a qualified physician.

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My name is Holly and I live in north Alabama with my hubby, two cats, and a dog.