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Tandem has lastly made its long-awaited app-based Cell Bolus characteristic out there to insulin pump customers due to a newly-released set of updates. We tried it ourselves to see how the primary app-connected insulin pump works.
As highly-regulated, life-saving gadgets, insulin pumps are typically a bit behind the instances. They’re utilitarian gadgets and did not get full-color contact screens till only a few brief years in the past.
The power to view your blood sugar, your pump standing, and — if essential — ship a guide insulin bolus out of your cellphone has been a very long time within the making. It is a massive step into fashionable life.
After being first permitted by the FDA in February of 2022, the replace is now out there to customers.
I have been a Sort-1 diabetic for roughly a decade. I believed I used to be within the clear, not exhibiting signs of this generic dysfunction till I used to be in my early 20s. Sort-1 diabetes is normally referred to as juvenile diabetes and has a a lot increased likelihood of inflicting children than adults.
It is Sort-1 diabetics like me that mostly depend on insulin pumps as we’re virtually fully insulin dependent. My pancreas creates little-to-no insulin, forcing me to dose insulin by guide injection or by way of an insulin pump.
I have been utilizing the Tandem t:slim X2 insulin pump which is — to this point — the one suitable mannequin with Tandem’s new Cell Bolus characteristic. Tandem has introduced its new Mobi pump that can haven’t any display screen and rely fully on the cell app to ship insulin due in late 2022 or early 2023.
I am additionally utilizing my iPhone 13 Professional for this testing. Many latest iPhones are supported, all the best way again to the iPhone X. For Android customers, it’s a bit grim. Solely choose Samsung gadgets launched within the final couple of years have help.
Updating our gadgets
To make use of the brand new Cell Bolus performance, you want the Tandem Cell App model 2.1.3 (or newer) and model 7.6 of the t:slim X2 software program.
The T:Join app replace is free from the App Retailer, however it’s good to full a collection of coaching modules earlier than the pump replace will develop into out there.
These modules stroll you thru the whole lot it’s good to know concerning the Cell Bolus characteristic. Tips on how to replace your pump, easy methods to ship a bolus, easy methods to cease a bolus, and lots extra. That is essential and certain required for regulatory causes in order that anybody who makes use of this has a strong understanding.
I do not take into consideration being tethered to a pump 24 hours a day, seven days per week anymore, nevertheless it’s essential to do not forget that insulin is critically essential. Too little or an excessive amount of can have life-endangering impacts.
As soon as I completed my coaching, Tandem emailed me a singular verification code tied to my pump’s serial quantity. I then entered that into the Tandem updater app for Mac and it was on its means.
It is price noting that through the replace course of the t:slim X2 restarts a number of instances and you will have to make use of a brand new cartridge if you restart it.
Lastly, the power to ship insulin from our iPhone
I have been ready for this present day for a very long time. My Dexcom G6 steady glucose monitor (CGM) — a longtime stage associate of Apple — has labored with my iPhone and Apple Look ahead to years and I have been eagerly ready for the day after I may handle my pump from there as properly.
Having to make use of the pump by itself has all the time been cumbersome. It is not all the time straightforward to get the pump out of your pocket and it may be conspicuous to make use of.
With the brand new replace, you possibly can ship insulin direct from the app. You faucet the bolus button and might set precisely the quantity of insulin it’s good to ship, like earlier than a meal.
If utilizing the Dexcom CGM with the t:slim X2, the Tandem cell app will mechanically pull in your present blood sugar studying. It is going to then use this to calculate any correction everytime you give your self insulin.
For instance, in case your blood sugar is trending low and you’re about to bolus for a meal, the Tandem will lower the quantity of insulin to assist stop additional lows.
Alerts out of your pump are displayed in your cellphone too. If there’s an occlusion, your insulin runs low, the battery is low, or ControlIQ has elevated your insulin because of excessive blood sugar you possibly can see the alert out of your cellphone, slightly than having to dislodge your pump out of your pocket.
You have already got your cellphone available alongside your Apple Watch. The mixture of Cell Bolus, notifications, and pump info gives a much better expertise than the pump alone.
Every part is not excellent with this new implementation. You continue to should clear alerts immediately from the pump, and prolonged boluses additionally aren’t capable of be programmed from the cellphone.
However this new replace exhibits a ton of progress that diabetics can really feel legitimately really feel enthusiastic about.
Tandem t:slim X2 value and availability
The Tandem t:slim X2 has been available on the market for a couple of years and has continued to obtain software program updates. With out insurance coverage, the retail out-of-pocket value with a prescription is round $4,000. What you pay out of pocket varies, based mostly on the protection you’ve — or haven’t got.
For current Tandem t:slim X2 house owners, the on-line portal has the coaching for the replace.