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Airplane Mode.

When it comes to traveling by airplane, I follow all of the rules (if you don’t turn off your cell phone when it’s time to take off, I’m the one shooting you panicked looks, which is how my face remains for the duration of the flight).  Until we’re up in the air, I leave my Dexcom receiver fully shut down and when I was using the Ping meter, I kept the RF (radio frequency, aka the automagic shuttling of blood sugars from my meter to my pump) shut off.

imagine my delight when I finally figured out that pressing the button on the side of my Verio Sync twice in rapid succession would put my meter into airplane mode!  (IMAGINE IT!!!)

(But did I test in my seat on the airplane?  I’ll never tell.  ;) )

8 Comments Post a comment
  1. Paula Schecter #

    Ignorance is bliss. I don’t fly very often. also due to metal allergies, I can’t wear a CGM very often. When I do fly, I want to use all the tools I can to make my trip a success. So I wear the CGM and use the Ping meter. I am a rule follower, like you. But it never occurred to me to turn off the transmitters on either device. Happily, I am writing to you because the plane had no problems flying with my little devices turned on.

    03/7/14; 2:48 pm
  2. I don’t think it’s necessary to turn any of that stuff off anymore. As long as everything is in airplane mode, you don’t need to turn off your electronics so you could probably leave your Dexcom on. Not sure about the wireless stuff, though.

    03/7/14; 3:44 pm
    • When I fly Southwest and US Airways, airplane mode is fine, but for Air Canada and other international flights I’ve taken, they ask you to turn everything off for takeoff and landing. AND I LISTEN. :)

      03/7/14; 4:54 pm
  3. No one has ever died from cell phones, let alone medical devices, being left on in flight. But dozens of planes are diverted, costing airlines millions and inconveniencing thousands of passengers, for medical emergencies. For the sake of everyone aboard, please please please don’t turn off your pump or CGM if they might help prevent an in-flight diabetes emergency.

    03/7/14; 4:17 pm
    • I don’t turn off my pump, Scott. You don’t have to beg. :) But I went 21 years without a CGM, so I’m pretty sure I can go 20 minutes while the plane is taking off. ;)

      03/7/14; 4:54 pm
  4. Kyle Morgan #

    Turning your Dexcom off is not required. From page 189 of the Dexcom Manual:

    “You may keep the receiver on before take-off, while in flight and after landing. The Dexcom G4 PLATINUM Continuous Glucose Monitoring System is safe for use on U.S. commercial airlines. The Dexcom G4 PLATINUM Transmitter is an M-PED with emission levels that meet RTCA/DO160, Section 21, Category M. Per FAA Advisory, Circular #91- 21, 1B, dated 8/25/06. Any M-PED that meets this standard in all modes may be used onboard the aircraft without any further testing by the operator. This device can withstand exposure to common electrostatic (ESD) and electromagnetic interference (EMI).”

    I checked this the first time I flew, and sure enough, it was fine. Now that I’m repatriated back to Canada I can tell you that I fly Air Canada and I leave mine on.

    03/7/14; 7:39 pm
    • I think I wasn’t entirely clear when I wrote the post – I have a lot of flight anxiety, and I turn things off in an abundance of caution. I know my cell phone and my Dexcom are two different devices entirely! But I appreciate that you looked this up. :D

      03/7/14; 8:25 pm
  5. I hate to make you worry, but if anything has the ability to affect anything, it’s the TRANSMITTER and not the receiver. (Or, to put it another way, it’s the mouth that makes noise, not the ears). So unless you’re prepared to remove the transmitter, I have to agree with the earlier comment that turning off the receiver won’t make a bit of difference. But — it can’t hurt either.

    (Now, if your transmitter were like mine., which isn’t powerful enough to reach from the window seat to the aisle seat, there’s not much to worry about)

    03/7/14; 10:33 pm

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