Still in LOVE with my “Baby T:Slim”!….

My T-Slim

The above Photo was taken on the day I received my T:Slim Insulin pump. I got this Insulin pump back in November, on the day before Thanksgiving. So now, for me, “T-Day” also stands for “T:Slim Day”.

After these past few months, I am still nuts over this bit of diabetes technology. I Love its’ ease of use with the high-contrast touch screen, and 10-key number pad for entering my blood glucose and carbohydrates, adjusting basal and anything else I may need to, makes it so much easier than the old days for ‘scrolling’ with an up or down arrow button.

Today, on Twitter, someone asked me for a little run-down of what I like and what I hate about the T:Slim. Well, it’s like this: I don’t “Hate” anything about it!! I think this is the best bit of Diabetes tech I’ve owned. “Hate” is a pretty strong word.

I prefer to say I have an “I would LIKE” List. Things I’d LIKE to see added, but it is not a deal breaker if they’re not added right now. Indeed, the Tandem Diabetes Care company is new, they have ventured into the piranha-infested waters of the Medical device industry. In my opinion, the only way to go is UP!

My “I would LIKE” list is as follows:

** I would LIKE to see a slightly longer “pigtail” from the cartridge, It should be longer by about 2″ to allow us to tuck the ‘luer lock’ into our clothing… Me? Into my waistband or underwear.

With my Portable battery pack. See the 'Pigtail'?

With my Portable battery pack. See the ‘Pigtail’?

** I would LIKE the T:Slim to be integrated with the Dexcom CGMS (Continuous Glucose Monitoring System). If and when they do, I would hope my CGMS data would upload through Tandem’s T:Connect software on my iMac. At this time, Dexcom is a stand-alone CGMS, a very nice system, but it does not work with Mac OS!

Considering the CEO of Dexcom, Terry Gregg, in an interview on TuDiabetes (YouTube Link here) is a self admitted “Apple-Guy”, I find this to be …. anomalous. As I understand it, Both Dexcom and Tandem are doing trials of this now for the ‘Artificial Pancreas’ so… y’know, why not? The T:Connect is wonderful for me, and it also uploads from my OneTouch Verio_IQ meter. Both of these devices go into my main report in T:Connect.

** I would LIKE for the top membrane where one fills the insulin cartridge through, to be better marked on where to pierce the filling syringe into. I have noticed that I have to try two to four times before I can actually fill the cartridge. If I have not gone to the correct area, the Filling syringe plunger will NOT budge. So, I pull it out and try in another part f the little membrane.

Ironically, the ONE morning I had to do an emergency fill (I’d let the thing run completely out) before work, and Before COFFEE no less, it all went FLAWLESSLY!!

This is the T:Slim cartridge See the little part at the right of the 'pigtail'?

This is the T:Slim cartridge See the little part at the right of the ‘pigtail’?

** I have had no complaints but I have read several other posts in our FaceBook group for T:Slim users that the case/belt clip combo that ships with the pump is “Too bulky”, “Too fragile” and that people would like a closer clip for the T:Slim. Tandem sent us all a T:Clip case around Christmastime, which is nice, a bit thinner, comes in colours, but the clip doesn’t rotate.

I have pointed out on more than one occasion in our group that Tandem doesn’t make the cases. They have partnered with a company called Myabetic, who is known for dressy, quality cases and carrying solutions for the discerning PWD to carry their daily needs. Not just the T:Slim, but meter cases, cases for ones’ insulin and syringes, or pens, what have you… I suggested perhaps, that people should contact Myabetic with their wishes pertaining to this accessory. I use the T:Holster. This is a nice, slim pouch, with a rotatable belt clip and small magnetic tab at the top. This is a fine solution for me.

These are my T:Holsters. Very businesslike.

These are my T:Holsters. Very businesslike.

Yet, we all have different tastes and wishes. *I* would love to show this pump off. I’m not at all embarrassed to have diabetes and I really don’t see the point in trying to hide this part of me. I’m soon to try a rig-up of a Minimed belt clip on my T:Slim. Let its’ “Beauty” be seen! One poster in the Facebook group is actually using the Medtronic Minimed clip for their 5xx insulin pump series on her T:Slim and is comfortable with it. I ordered one from MM as well and will also try this.

I love the beeps, reminding me to change a site, Do a glucose test, Low insulin, whatever. I can hear them very well, and I need that sometimes.

I love the offset way the T:Slim delivers insulin. Instead of a Straight out, down the infusion line into your site, it’s brought up from the main cartridge into a smaller reservoir and sent out from this. Tandems’ Advanced Micro-Infusion is pretty darn nice!

This is, in my own opinion, a beautiful insulin pump. I got very tired of things we have to use as looking too “Medical”. Too utilitarian. If we HAVE to have this condition, I think we should have to use decent devices that can look nice. 

I know that – for some folks, it hasn’t been tested to use with an insulin called Apidra, I know of one who had to give up the T:Slim because it did not play well with her Apidra. I use Humalog, others use Novolog and those seem to work quite well with the T:Slim. From our group, I understand that if you change the cartridge and set every 2-3 days  even Apidra might be fine in the T:Slim. One must only be aware that this has not been tested with the T:Slim.

I’m very happy I went through the insurance hoops and appeals and got this insulin pump. If a medical device can ever be called “Beautiful’ in appearance and ease of use, this would be one of them. After all, I still call it “My Baby T:Slim” Even though there is NOTHING “Baby” about it in performance!

********UPDATE On Clips/Cases*******

I did a little experiment with a MM belt clip. Got the one for the 523 Paradigm series, and WAS going to gift it to a pal today. She already got one (!!) So I brought this one back, I tried my T:Slim in it.

Minimalist clip!

Minimalist clip, Almost a Perfect fit!

Nothing is really secure here, but it LOOKS nice!

Nothing is really secure here, but it LOOKS nice!

It works very well, but the pump could slide out from the side(s)…. So my Brain kicked in and I applied dots of Jeweler’s glue to the inside of the clip. I let this dry.

Putting some SNUGNESS in!

Putting some SNUGNESS in!

Glue dries to almost transparency.

Glue dries to almost complete transparency.

So, now it stays put. You can see the ‘dots’ of the dried glue, bracing the pump into the clip, but it is easy to remove when I want to.

So happy this worked out!

So happy this worked out!

My T:Slim is in the clip and the dots I put in are ‘tacky’ enough that it will not slide out. Now I can rock my T:Slim as the “STAR”. So pleased & I thanked our groups’ poster who had this idea!

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10 Responses to Still in LOVE with my “Baby T:Slim”!….

  1. Laddie says:

    Nice review of the Tandem. I still wonder if I made a mistake to go with Animas in order to get the Vibe.

  2. michelle toby says:

    Thanks so much for your great review of the Tslim. I am thinking about getting one, but I’m having a lot of anxiety about choosing the right pump (in fact, it’s keeping me up at night). I have been a type 1 since 1979 and I do okay on multiple injections (a1c is 6.4), but I have more lows than I’d like and I am always up at night checking to see what’s going on with my blood sugars over night. I was on the medtronic pump ten years ago, but I got tired of being attached to a machine all the time and I found that I had to change the infusion set every two days (control would always slip on the third day). I’m ready to try a pump again, but I’m wondering if the revel with the integrated cgm would help me. If I understand correctly, they are working toward a technology that would stop the flow of insulin if you dropped too low at night (don’t think they are there yet). I really don’t like all the stuff attached to me, so I’m reluctant to take on a cgm and a pump both. Plus, it seems many folks find the dexcom more reliable than the medtronic cgm anyway. Ahhhhhh!!!!!!!!! I guess my questions for you and other type 1s out there are, do you find that a cgm has simplified your life and improved your control, and should I stick with medtronic because they’ve already got the integrated system going, or get the sexy tslim and hope their integration with dexcom happens soon? I love the look of the tslim and how user friendly the screens are, but I don’t want to choose sexy over practical.

    • The Medtronic VEO, released in Europe already has the feature of basal cessation when you have the CGMS in and on too. Mainly, the FDA is the one the US market is waiting on to get it released here….

      I think the T:Slim is a lot nicer in everyday use. Just easy little things that make the day go by. T:Slim is already working with Dexcom on an ‘Artificial Pancreas’ but the Dexcom integration IMO, will come sooner than the AP. One thing about the pump compared to MDI, Once you have a lot of your basal insulin and bolusing dialed in, you won’t have as many lows as you do. On the CGMS, I was amazingly covered for a MM CGMS, so I use my MM Pump as a reader.I did use the Dexcom and think that was a lot nicer. It was closer to my fingerstick results and the alarms were much easier to hear.Also, with the Dexcom, you can use that alone with no pump to help in the MDI regulation. You could just use the Dexcom when you really want to see your trends and what you insulin’s doing to you in those lows. I would probably do the Dex first and then worry about a pump if you need to.

    • loubou says:

      Michelle, I had a medtronic pump for 13 yrs and was tired of being attached but I refused to go back to MDI. I recently got on the Omnipod + the Dexcom and love both. There are no tubes but you do have to carry around two PDM’s. But I prefer that to having a pump hanging on my clothing. Also having the Dexcom as a seperate unit allows me to hear the alarms at night if I go too low. I never heard my MM CGM since my pump was buried under me. Omnipod has reduced the size of their pods but they only hold 180 units. Works for me since I only use 100 in 3 days.

  3. Heather says:

    Thanks for the tip on the tandom a M clip. I got the clip & love it, plus it’s nice that it’s cheaper.

  4. miriam says:

    Is the tslim pump water proof. Can i go in pool/beach without having to take it off.

    • It is more what I would call Water ‘resistant’. If I go to the beach or water, I can put my t:Slim into a couple of Ziplock baggies and keep it dry. The touch screen still works, just not as sensitive to the fingertip as normal.

  5. Ash says:

    What infusion set do you use?

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