Mike's Excellent Glucose Monitor Adventure

(Michael - When reality fails to meet expectations, the problem is not reality.) #1

As noted here:

I purchased an Abbott FreeStyle Libre continuous glucose monitor today at my local London Drugs. I selected this item because the initial cost is fairly low ($55 for the reader device) and I don’t have to poke holes or donate blood. I’ve set up a free account at LibreView which will enable me to upload data from the reader. Not sure yet what exactly I’ll do with the data, but I don’t want to leave it on the handheld device, since storage capacity is limited. The device connects to my computer via a USB cable, which also doubles as the cable for charging the reader.

My initial plan is simply to apply the sensor patch, read the data every 8 hours, upload the data to LibreView. The sensor patches are expensive $100 a pop and last only 14 days. So I intend to monitor glucose only from ‘time to time’. To be determined.

When I’ve got data, I will post it here. Stay tuned. :slightly_smiling_face:

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(mole person) #2

You might want to talk to @KetoCancerMom to ask her how she adjusts the graph to get a good view of her range. It’s intended use is for people who are diabetics and who have wild swings in blood glucose. So for someone who’s glucose is relatively stable the unadjusted graph appears as a virtually flat line even when it isn’t.

(Cancer Fighting Ketovore :)) #3

I forget, what part of the world are you in?

If in the USA you can easily find coupons to cut the cost in 1/2.

(Michael - When reality fails to meet expectations, the problem is not reality.) #4

Vancouver, Canada.

(Cancer Fighting Ketovore :)) #5

can you still find coupons for them?

Also, all I do is upload the software and then import it into google sheets. Then I can manipulate it how I want.

(Michael - When reality fails to meet expectations, the problem is not reality.) #6

Possibly, I’ll check it out. I already did a very quick and superficial inquiry on coupons for the sensors and it looks like only with a prescription. But I will investigate further. Thanks.

(Michael - When reality fails to meet expectations, the problem is not reality.) #7

Tentative start date is Tuesday, Mar 3. I’m off work that day so I’ll be able to apply the sensor in the morning before my keto coffee and take my first reading at 8 hours. That timeframe will cover both my keto coffee and my mid-day primary meal. This is interesting:

(Rebecca 🌸 Frankenfluffy) #8

After you’ve started the sensor with the reader, there is a 60-minute waiting time before you can read a result for the first time.

I always apply my sensors 24 hours before I start them. That way I get much, much more accurate readings right from the off (in my experience the readings take a while to settle down, perhaps due to the mild skin and tissue trauma of having the probe fired in with the spring-loaded introducer needle, and I’ve found waiting a day really does make the readings more comparable to the readings on my blood glucose meter.

So if my sensor is due to expire on a Saturday morning, I apply (but don’t start!) my next one on the Friday morning. As soon as the old sensor expires I start the new one, and then wait 60 minutes for it to initialise.

I’m giggling at the 8-hour thing! I scan every few minutes. But then I’m a straight-line-obsessed T1D with perfectionist issues. Careful you don’t go over the 8-hour period between scans - you’ll have gaps in your graph.

Have fun!

(Michael - When reality fails to meet expectations, the problem is not reality.) #9

@KetoSnaps May I conclude you’re using the FreeStyle Libre? So I can stick the sensor on and it does nothing until activated by the reader? No loss of battery charge? Maybe I’ll stick it on the night before going to bed then get up for few minutes earlier than normal to activate the sensor. The first few days I’ll probably read the device multiple times. I am a gadget guy! Thanks.

(Rebecca 🌸 Frankenfluffy) #10

Yes, Freestyle Libre.

The sensor only starts when you scan it for the first time - then the 60-min countdown begins. After that you can scan it again for your first reading.

Absolutely I would stick it in the night before - that way your body’s reaction to being stuck with the probe won’t risk skewing any data.

If you want to keep track of actual number values as you go through your day, you do need to scan frequently. The reader is only able to go back 8 hours, so if you leave it longer than that you’ll get a gap. But it does store all the data it collects for a full 90 days. The Logbook screen will show you every number from whenever you scan, and these numbers are also recorded when you download the reader. I need these numbers in order to make dosing decisions.

The graph line is great, don’t get me wrong, but as a diabetic I need to know what the actual number value is.

Excuse the ironing board background - I’m off sick from work but feeling better enough for catching up on chores. :joy:

I love the Libre, but one day I’d love a CGM rather than ‘just’ a flash monitor! Okay, I could pimp the Libre with a retrofitted transmitter, but that’s only compatible with Android at the moment, which doesn’t fit with me. I’d love one that automatically transmits to a reader minute by minute, rather than having to harvest the data myself. That would be very handy while driving, or while at work, where my safety is important and it would be good to be able to glance at a screen in real time!

(Michael - When reality fails to meet expectations, the problem is not reality.) #11

Thanks again. I don’t have any metabolic issues that I’m aware of. I’m mostly interested, at least initially, in the trend. 3+ years into keto and pretty much 99% of the time in ketosis, I expect to see low glucose and not much up/down. If I don’t see that initially, I’ll try to figure out why not. If I do, then I intend to test the effect of various activities and foods on glucose levels. For example:

(Cancer Fighting Ketovore :)) #12

Yeah, should start applying my sensor a day in advance. Its annoying how "off " it can get. Also, I seem to run into a problem the last few days before the sensor expires. My BG (fingerstick) usually reads 15-20 points higher than the scan.

(Stephen Judd) #13

I’ve also experienced the off-readings at beginning and end of cycle and also between sensors. Luckily, I am mainly interested in the relative changes due to food and exercise, and don’t obsess over the specific numbers…

@amwassil - The elevation in blood glucose from intense exercise is easily noticeable. It can also stay relatively elevated for quite a while afterwards, especially if I remain fasted.

(Rebecca 🌸 Frankenfluffy) #14

When I first started using the system I found readings for the first day or so to be so out of the park (usually high) that my calculations - and therefore my wellbeing - were seriously compromised. I soon discovered that other users were applying them ahead of time, so I’ve been doing that habitually for the last four years.

A couple of months ago I had a sensor fail entirely, so I applied a replacement and started it immediately. It read ‘LO’ for the next 10+ hours (fortunately I was monitoring on my BG meter at the same time - and showing readings in range -, so I wasn’t in any diabetic danger. Annoying, though).

The only actual downside of applying my next sensor 24 hours in advance is that in wearing a sensor on each arm I feel I must look rather like a crash-test dummy for that period…! :rofl:

(Cancer Fighting Ketovore :)) #15

Right now my sensor is being annoying. It’s having trouble getting reading. Says to check back in 7hrs :frowning:. I’ve been told that it’s from White cells sticking to the filament

(Michael - When reality fails to meet expectations, the problem is not reality.) #16

2020/03/02 9:45 pm Attached the sensor. I have to admit when I saw that pin my first thought was “this is going to hurt”. It’s looks about 1/4 inch long. But it went in with no pain, although I did feel it.

(Michael - When reality fails to meet expectations, the problem is not reality.) #17

I activated the sensor a little after 7am. I’m posting this here as a reference. Almost everyone is talking in terms of mg/dL while my FreeStyle uses mmol/L. I need to have a reference to understand what others are talking about to compare my results. I’ll post my first morning’s results later. I first have to figure out just how to upload the raw data to LibreView to get the graph, then how to get the graph into here.


(Michael - When reality fails to meet expectations, the problem is not reality.) #18

Gluconeogenesis at work. I’ve eaten 5 grams of carbs in the last 18 hours and 1.35 grams in the last 12 hours, which was my keto coffee this morning between 11a-12p. That appears to have raised my glucose from 5.5 to 6.3.

(Rebecca 🌸 Frankenfluffy) #19

Here in UK we measure in mmol/l too - I remember when I first came across BG numbers in mainland Europe and US I was staggered, assuming they were on the same scale, and thinking ‘how on earth is 100 normal, when surely if mine were 100 I’d be dead?!’


(Michael - When reality fails to meet expectations, the problem is not reality.) #20

2020/03/03 16:30 19:00 20:00 PST Updates

I changed the ‘target’ limits to 3.5 x 6.5 mmol/L.

11:00 - 12:00 Keto coffee
13:00 - 14:00 Main meal

BrAce: 16.5 ppm
Lumen: 5 (my first 5!)

Interesting. I’m in ketosis, have a 5.6 mmol/L glucose, heading for 5.4. And I blow a 5 on the Lumen! I wonder if the Lumen is better correlated with glucose rather than ketones? Hmmmmmm.

19:30 - 20:00 Secondary meal

Lumen - let the conversation begin :yum: