« Things That Are Awesome. | Main | The Snowless Snowday Six. »

Minimed Trick I Didn't Know About.

I have had this Minimed 522 for over a year now, and just yesterday I discovered an option I hadn't previously known about:  Daily Totals Screen.

My old pump had daily totals.  I would hit the utilities option, scroll down to daily totals, and I'd see a running tally of how much insulin I took in total on the previous two or three weeks.  This was a cool option I clicked on every few days so I could keep track of my total daily dosage (and it also helped me isolate the days when I was running higher, because those TDDs were higher).   

Purely by accident (because I do not read the manuals that come with any technological device - technoJOY!), I realized that my new Minimed 522 not only gives my total daily dosage, but it also gives me averages of my blood sugars.  This is AWESOME because, thanks to the One Touch UltraLink that shoots my results over to the pump and thanks to the CGM sensor lodged in my arm, I have a really good sense of how crap my blood sugars have been for the last week and a half.  

Minimed pump features I had no clue about.

(Oh how I kid.)  Actually and unfortunately, I'm not kidding at all.  Last week was a veritable ping-pong match in my body and there is concrete evidence of this terrible run in both my Dexcom receiver and my pump.  My daily insulin totals have leapt from 22 units of Humalog a day to a whopping 35 units.  (And before you start thinking, "Hey, that's not a lot of insulin," remember:  your diabetes may vary.  It's a lot for me.)  Seeing my blood sugar averages and the number of correction boluses I'm taking during the course of a week shocks my brain into lurching into action.  "Average of 189 mg/dl?  Must ... improve ... control ..."

I think this Minimed bolus/TDD/blood sugar tracking feature is very handy, and a great tool for anyone who wants to see their diabetes in a customizable snapshot.  Like I said, I now know that my numbers truly have sucked for the past week, but I'm hoping that when I take a peek at my 14 day averages next week, I'll see some improvement. 

I wonder what other secrets this pump holds. Maybe if I press a few buttons in unison and hop on one foot while wearing bunny slippers, I can unlock this cryptex to find where Siah's been hiding my wallet ...

EDIT:  Just realized I didn't specify how to find the feature, if you haven't already.  Go to Utilities, then Daily Totals, then Daily Averages. Set the number of days you want, and hit ACT. Viola! 

Comments

You make me sad for myself. My average daily totals are running around 55 units right now. :(

Cara - But you shouldn't feel sad! It's not about how much insulin I'm using, but about how much my TDD have jumped over the last few days as a result of this frigging ping-ponging. :(

Don't feel bad. Like I said, everyone's diabetes may vary. This is just what mine is up to at the moment.

Thank you! I had no idea that the daily totals feature even existed! (although now I am ticked at the number it gave me, but that is all my fault! hehe)

haha. Everyone knows the code is: Up, Up, Down, Down, Left, Right, Left, Right, B, A, select, start.

One observation, you have eaten 2 grams of carbs by 3:19 PM??? So THAT'S the trick... ;)

Oh yeah, battery change soon.

Isn't that upgraded feature from the 512 glorious? I like to look at the 7 and 31 day averaged every few days to see how I am doing.

I aim for my corrections to be no more than 20% of my avg. bolus (2nd to last screen). I also like to be 60% basal 40% bolus if possible, but it usually ends up more like 50/50.

I'm not sure which pump you had prior to the 522, but the 515 also has the same features. I've been using that feature for years. I didn't realize that other people didn't know about it. I don't believe the 508 or any of the other Minimed pumps do.

Also, why is your bolus percentage so high if you only ate 2g of carbs? That seems odd.

Aspen - Glad to help!

Tony - LOL!! I can tell you used to play Contra with others because you also hit "select." Thirty guys! :)

And also, I don't enter my carbs into the pump. I eat more than 2 grams a day - trust me!

Sara - It is wicked. I feel like a tool because I never noticed it before. I just went and told the production guy I work with (he wears a 722) and showed him, too. Same result: "WOW! I didn't realize that was an option!" Thankfully, I'm not the only one who just plugs and plays without reading the damn manual. ;)

And this photo goes to show how CRAP my numbers were last week. Way too many boluses to correct stuff. This week has been better(ish).

Allison - Re: carbs, see response to Tony. I don't enter my carbs into my pump. Those 2 snuck in there by accident because I was in a hurry. And I had a 512 before this, so my old pump didn't have this option.

this is why i suppose is another reason I dont have a pump besides the obvious fact that it is very expensive . too complicated for a non techno person like me . I am so glad you can figure it out .LOL!! great blog as usual .

I took a 2nd look, only 22 units...mmm keep working on that and u will be down to zero in no time. I wish!
I use bolus wiz 95% of time, which helps me keep corr to less 10% most times, not bad days thou. I like the 522; waiting 4 the next one which will be better still.

Sara told me about the lack of option on the 512, so that makes sense why you didn't notice 'til now. I think I'm just button-happy which is how I found it pretty early on.

Why don't you use your Bolus Wizard? That's my favorite part!

I skipped the 715 too, so I hadn't seen this feature before my 722 either either. It's in the manual (read the manuals, girlfriend) so that's how I knew. read the manual!!! Lots of tricks in there!!!!

And BTW you aren't supposed to know everything. That's what makes you REAL!!!! KNow it alls are annoying heh heh

Wow, "daily totals" is my favorite screen. I'm really obsessive about checking it for some reason.

No bolus wizard either? I would be a mess without that puppy!

Did you know that you can turn on the backlight from any screen by holding the bolus button and then pressing down?

Just checking..

Awesome! I have the same pump and I can't tell you how many times I just scrolled right by the Daily Average option. Thank you Kerri!

One of my favourite places to check out the pump utilities menu , is when I sit on the loo , ha, ha ...my pump nurse is really happy , if I correct less than 6 percent (scroll to next screen ) ...for me not the case lately , bah humbug ..I use a Bayer Contour Link glucometer, find it easier than using the Wizard ...hope I make sense .And I am not a techy , however find this pump stuff quite user friendly .

I also just "discovered" the daily totals. I told my endo that I was always chasing highs so I stumbled on the daily totals and divided amount of insulin into carbs to find my ratio...Yikes! My ratio was way off! (What I want to know is why my endo did not use this to help me adjust?) My new ratio is based on the daily totals numbers for the past 10 days and guess what? No more uncontrollable high bs. I also used it to confirm that my sensitivity was off.

holy crap, I had nooooo idea that was there and my average was not bad, but......I know I had a ton of lows. Keep us posted on anything else you may find. :)

Thanks, Link ..can always teach old dogs new tricks ...turn on the backlight by holding the bolus button on the minimed pump etc.etc...

I LOVE this feature!!! I look at it every night before I go to bed. I use it as a weight management tool myself--a good way to see how much Ive been eating (just dont forget the protein and fats!).

You know that you can also set up your pump so that if the battery is out too long it will save your settings?
(Utilities, User settings (but to open this one, you have to hold down the bolus wizard button and push ACT at the same time), hit save settings and youre gold.)

Breanne , this is where I need some of your guidance " hold down the wizard button " to open and push act ...where is the wizard button ????
I'll have supper first ...the brains may /may not work better ...

Breanna, you are AWESOME. I had no idea about this one, either! Thank you so much for the tip!

Anonymous - To get there, the "wizard button" is the far left button with the arrows and the B on it. Otherwise, you get a "consult user manual" prompt. Let me know if you need anything else!!

... and Jill, that backlight tip is also helpful. :) You guys are the best!!

OMG! i use this all the time =]

Kerri , can I not use the setting at this moment , because I am delivering a " square "...pasta to night ??
And I have to clarify ( Dec. 18 posting ) ...I suppose I do use Wizard button regularly ( on the left of pump ..." B" ...I did not know , that the B stood for Bolus Wizard ????)

I love the daily totals bit, I use the averages to keep a check on things - I find the 7, 14 and 30 day averages give me some perspective on how good or bad my sugars have been.

I also found a formula to get a rough idea of how average blood sugar relates to HbA1c result - its not 100% accurate but I find it gives me a useful rule of thumb to know whereabouts I am. I have the Medtronic combined pump and CGMS so my figures take into account all my readings, not sure the forumla is that useful if you only do a couple of tests a day because the HbA1c result would include all highs and lows that get missed between tests.

A1c= (Average blood sugar [mg/dL] + 77.3)/35.6

Kerri, you shouldn't feel like a tool for not noticing it before... my diabetes educators didn't even know about it! When I was there last time they were wanting to know my average and started drawing a table to calculate it on paper and I was like, "What the hell are you doing? My pump can do that for you!", they couldn't believe it... even rang their colleagues straight away to tell them about it... lol

I love that feature! It's one of the best ways for me to follow my trends that don't show up in the log book (like carb and insulin use and all that). It also keeps my carbs in check, when I start seeing those carb averages over 100 grams, I know that elevated blood sugar averages are soon to follow.

Because I'm such a dork, I read the whole manual when I got my pump in April - so I've been using that feature. Not as much lately though - because like you, my blood sugars have been completely out of whack. (Hello 300s for no reason). Looking at "bad" daily totals makes me feel even worse about my blood sugars than I already did. *sigh*

I was able to save my 522 settings ...thank you all for the lesson( s) ...

Don't feel bad Kerri ... although I do use the daily averages A LOT now I didn't know about if for quite some time. And my endo and CDE do not ever look at this.

Ali, thank you so much for posting that formula for a1c. In the past 2 years I have had a HUGE problem with my bg averages tying into my a1c results ... my averages have been around the 130 - 140 range and sometimes lower even when using the CGM (which is pretty good in my book) but my a1c is usually 7+. It's totally frustrating :0

Casey's ped/endo told us to ALWAYS use the bolus wizard, it makes a big difference in the A1C...

Just thank you for that tip.

Okay, so I have to admit, I am a manual reader and a techy, and I somehow missed this feature. It's awesome, thanks for the tip!

Post a comment

(All comments are moderated. Thanks for your patience!)