Paxx is eight years old and like any boy his age, he loves playing with his friends at school and on the weekend. The difference between Paxx and his friends however, is that Paxx has type 1 diabetes (T1D). To manage his diabetes, Paxx and his mother Sarah, decided to start pumping with the t:slim X2™ insulin pump. Together with the Dexcom G5 Mobile Continuous Glucose Monitoring (CGM) system, Sarah has been comforted knowing that no matter where Paxx is and what he is doing, she can monitor his sugar levels in real time. In this way, Sarah can sleep easy knowing she can watch Paxx’s levels remotely and guide him through his diabetes management when needed.
To find out more, we sat down with Sarah to ask her about Paxx’s journey with diabetes – from multiple daily injections (MDI) to pumping with the t:slim X2 insulin pump in conjunction with the Dexcom G5 Mobile CGM System.
Q: Can you tell us a little about Paxx and his diabetes journey?
Paxx was diagnosed with T1D when he was three years old. His resilience and bravery, along with my viligant approach to his diabetes management, meant that he remained stable for a while. However in 2017, we found that he experienced a period of blood sugar highs and lows. Paxx had to check his sugar levels so often that his little hands were so sore. From there, we made the decision to purchase Dexcom G5 Mobile CGM as that meant we would be able to monitor his sugar levels no matter where he is. It also meant that I could make decisions on bolus amounts with all the information I need, right on my smart phone. And then about a year later in 2018, Paxx started pumping on the t:slim X2 insulin pump – he finds it so easy to use!
Q: It sounds like Paxx is enjoying pumping with the t:slim X2 insulin pump. Have you noticed any differences with Paxx’s diabetes management since switching from MDI?
Absolutely – Paxx has achieved better management of his diabetes which includes a lower HbA1c reading! We are looking forward to his next test! He is also happier using the t:slim X2 insulin pump and that’s very important to me because he is the one that has to feel comfortable with it on. So for us, the t:slim X2 insulin pump has become our preferred method of insulin delivery due to the way the cartridge is designed and the overall pump functionality.
Q: What made you decide to go with the t:slim X2 insulin pump initially? Since using it have you discovered any features you think would help parents of children with T1D manage their diabetes?
Firstly, we love that it’s rechargeable which means no more batteries. The touchscreen feature is also great! We both find it easy to use and the fact that we can upgrade the software is also incredible. This upgradable design ensures we will remain up-to-date with the technology throughout Paxx’s treatment with an insulin pump.
Since starting on the t:slim X2 insulin pump, I have noticed the simplicity of being able to add up the carbs in a meal on the bolus calculator! Paxx is now able to add up his meals himself, as opposed to me just telling him the final carb count.
We have also found that we love the compatibility with the Dexcom G5 Mobile CGM System. Paxx can easily look at just one screen to see his sugar level and view the direction it may be heading.
Q: The Dexcom G5 Mobile CGM compatibility [with the t:slim X2 insulin pump] can be a great feature for parents of children with T1D. What have you found is your favourite feature about the Dexcom G5 Mobile CGM System?
My favourite feature of the Dexcom G5 Mobile CGM is having alerts sent to me at any time through the Follow app and having the ability to see what direction his sugars are headed. These are essential in being able to gain tighter overall management of his diabetes.
Q: So the Follow feature is a big plus for you and Paxx?
Definitely. I love the Follow app because it gives Paxx the freedom to be able to attend birthday parties and school events, while I monitor his sugar levels from afar. Because I have access to all the information in front of me, Paxx can simply phone me and I am then able to make a bolus decision for him.
Editor note: Sarah wanted to share this story to emphasise how advancements in diabetes technology has helped her family – with Paxx gaining independence and Sarah, peace of mind. Although unlike his friends, Paxx lives with T1D, the use of the t:slim X2 insulin pump and Dexcom G5 Mobile CGM system, has meant Paxx doesn’t have to miss out on anything his friends are up to. Whether PAxx is at home, school, a friend’s house or even camp, Sarah never feels too far away! And Paxx, well he’s now able to enjoy the little things like playing with his friends – all while counting his own carbs!
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“My favourite feature of the Dexcom G5 Mobile CGM is having alerts sent to me at any time through the Follow app and having the ability to see what direction his sugars are headed. These are essential in being able to gain tighter overall management of his diabetes.”
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Emily Vuong is a 23 year-old half-Australian, half-Vietnamese woman from Perth, WA, living with type 1 diabetes. Emily lives an active lifestyle, refusing to be held back by her diabetes. In fact, she just recently completed her first marathon!
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