Medtronic 780 insulin pump – REVIEW
I realised that it’s unpleasant to write a review on a system worth around 5000 USD. It is much easier to write about for ex. a sensor, because if you’re not satisfied – you spent much less then you would for a pump, and you can easily sell sensors you don’t want to use anymore.
Still, there are people that can spend or “borrow” that amount of money. Especially if they know the pump will be useful to them and bring them peace, better sleep, better blood sugar control, easier tracking of their children and a better reaction in case of an emergency.
So, let’s get to the point: I think that the chances of getting all those things that I mentioned earlier with this pump are big!
Because I want to keep my credibility, let’s start with the cons:
1) Medtronic 780G insulin pump is currently connected to Guardian sensor that is supposed to last 7 days, which is ok because you can extend it for a few more days, but it is the only sensor on the market that requires at least two BG meter readings a day in order to generate sensor glucose readings. If you are used to Libre sensor, this part will be a little hard for you.
2) If you expect that the pump algorithm “knows” you perfectly the first day and will get you in range immediately – you will be sad. After you set the sensor and the pump, you have to wait at least 48 hours for the autopilot to work and it’s desirable if you let the algorithm learn as much as possible about you. The first few days, the algorithm will be careful and will balance your BG on approx. 8-9 mmol/L, but as the days go by the algorithm gets “braver” and is getting closer to the numbers that you set (in my case 5.5 mmol/L).
3) If you thought that you can eat a pizza and let the pump do its thing, I need to stop you there and say – no way. Knowing how to count carbs and calculate carb/insulin ratio correctly is still important. Of course, less then before because the Medtronic 750G pump can somehow correct our mistakes, but it’s still important.
Few more good things:
1) There are compatible sensors on the HZZO list already. Yes, we get 40 per year, and need 52, but if the people from Slovenia and Serbia did manage to get more, I hope we will to. Besides that, you can also extend it (illegally though).
2) The rechargeable transmitter still isn’t on the HZZO list, but you pay it when you buy the pump.
3) As soon as the algorithm gets to know you, it will start to send more insulin more seriously and hold you on lower BG more aggressively if you adjust it.
4) As a major fan and a user of DIY system similar to this one – I never thought I will write this: most often it is easier to manage the pump with the pump alone, then with mobile phone! The pump is always with you – so you always know where it is, but the mobile phone on the other hand…
What is really, really good? – The nights!
This is a product that will bring peace and sweet dreams to you and your family. I am sure you will have better BG then you had before the 780 pump. My thoughts are that you can’t get bad regulation with this pump even if you are ignorant or had bad regulation previously, at least you will get very good regulation at night.
Days – food and sports
To expect that hypoglycemia (during the day) will disappear completely is not real, especially if you suddenly began to exercise or had more physical activity, and haven’t “told” the pump. During physical activity your sensitivity to insulin will suddenly increase and there is a chance you will slide to a mild Hypo because of insulin accumulation (IOB).
However, you can expect that numbers and the power of your hypoglycemia will drastically decrease. Medtronic 780G algorithm is “afraid” of hypo’s and will almost surely turn off the insulin delivery before the hypo happens, but that doesn’t mean that it will succeed to avoid it every time. In comparison with 640G, this pump will automatically increase insulin delivery, if and when it notices that the BG is rising. The pump makes decisions of increasing and decreasing insulin delivery every 5 minutes for 24 hours. Which patient can do that?
My results are extraordinary…
However, it is fair to mention that the results are good thanks to this modern pump, but also because I personally convinced myself that people who recommend large portions of carbs (according to traditional guidelines) – are wrong. Of course, someone who posted a picture eating an ice cream couldn’t be called a low-carb fanatic, so you couldn’t say I’m one.
Parents and children with diabetes
I’m not exaggerating when I say that this is currently the most advanced insulin pump in the world. However, Medtronic is the last in the competition when it comes to other things. They were the last ones that realized that Bluetooth is a fantastic and very necessary technology that an insulin pump has and it’s especially important to parents. For ex. Roche installed Bluetooth in its pumps in 2010.
This story is just as it needs to be – fantastic. You need to give your child a mobile phone, which is going to transfer the data from the pump to the internet via MiniMed Mobile application. That will happen automatically, also via for ex. The school Wi-Fi. Another problem is a very poor list of mobile phones that can use it. There is a lot of iPhones and Samsungs, but there is much less other brands.
Therefore, you need to install MiniMed Mobile on your child’s phone and the parent needs to install CareLink Connect on its phone. After that you will be able to see what is going on with your child in every moment. How high or low his/hers BG is, how much insulin does the pump deliver etc. Well done Medtronic! Parents can use their app on officially unsupported cell phones, while children have to have officially supported ones.
On your CareLink app you can’t give your child insulin from a distanced location (for safety reasons), but you can get to know a lot of things and if something is wrong you can call the teacher immediately:
Notifications on parents cell phones
I am aware that currently the price is very high, but at least the ones that can afford (or the ones that are more clever) can buy this technology miracle. If you haven’t noticed – as it goes in life, that is a necessary precondition for a concept to spread and become more accessible for a “small man”. The ones that are currently very seriously thinking about buying this tech miracle, can use an opportunity to test everything that I wrote. You can buy this pump at the authorised distributer – Mediligo company.
Wishing everyone good luck.
P.S. This review is made in cooperation with Mediligo company. Thank you for borrowing Medtronic 780G insulin pump. I think their educators will work hard this year, but believe me they are very excited and happy about it.