Hands-on: Tandem t: Slim Insulin Delivery Feature for the iPhone X2 Connected | Camel

AppleInsider is supported by its audience and you may earn commission as an Amazon Partner and Affiliate Partner on eligible purchases. These affiliate partnerships do not affect our editorial content.

Tandem has finally made its much awaited app-based Mobile Bolus feature available for insulin pump users thanks to a newly released rollup of updates. We tried it out for ourselves to see how the first app-connected insulin pump works.

Being highly regulated and life-saving devices, insulin pumps tend to be a bit behind the times. They are utilitarian devices and only got full color touch screens a few years ago.

The ability to view blood sugar and pump status – if needed – to deliver a manual insulin dose from your phone has been a long time in the pipeline. It is a big step in modern life.

After it was first approved by the Food and Drug Administration in February of 2022, the update is now available to users.

Our devices

I have had type 1 diabetes for nearly a decade. I thought I was in the clear, and I didn’t develop symptoms of this general disorder until I was in my early twenties. Type 1 diabetes is often called juvenile diabetes and has a much higher chance of developing it in children than adults.

People with type 1 diabetes like me are most commonly dependent on insulin pumps because we are almost completely dependent on insulin. The pancreas produces little or no insulin, forcing me to dose the insulin by manual injection or via an insulin pump.

My Tandem t: Slim X2

I have been using the Tandem t: Slim X2 insulin pump and it is – so far – the only model compatible with Tandem’s new Mobile Bolus feature. Tandem announced a new, screenless Mobi pump that relies entirely on a mobile app for insulin delivery in late 2022 or early 2023.

I am also using my iPhone 13 Pro for this test. Many recent iPhones are supported, right up to the iPhone X. For Android users, it’s a bit grim. Only select devices from Samsung released in the last two years have support.

Update our devices

To use the new Mobile Bolus function, you need Tandem Mobile App version 2.1.3 (or later) and t:slim X2 version 7.6.

The T: Connect app update is free from the App Store, but you need to complete a series of training modules before the pump update becomes available.

These modules walk you through everything you need to know about the Mobile Bolus feature. How to update the pump, how to connect the bolus, how to turn off the bolus, and more. This is so critical and likely required for regulatory reasons that anyone using this will have a solid understanding.

I don’t think of being strapped to a pump 24 hours a day, seven days a week anymore, but it’s important to remember that insulin is very important. Too little or too much can have life-threatening effects.

Tandem update process

Tandem update process

Once I finished my training, Tandem emailed me a unique verification code associated with my pump serial number. Then I entered that into the Tandem updater app for Mac and it was on its way.

It should be noted that during the update process t:slim X2 restarts several times and you will have to use a new cartridge when it restarts.

Finally, the ability to deliver insulin from our iPhone

I’ve been waiting for this day for a long time. Longtime Apple partner Dexcom G6 Continuous Glucose Monitor (CGM) has been working with my iPhone and Apple Watch for years, and I’ve been eagerly waiting for the day I can manage the pump from there, too.

T: Connect Mobile Bolus

T: Connect Mobile Bolus

Having to use the pump on its own has always been stressful. It is not always easy to get the pump out of your pocket and using it can be straightforward.

With the new update, you can deliver your insulin directly from the app. You push the bolus button and you can select the exact amount of insulin you need, just like before a meal.

T: Connect the app

T: Connect the app

If you are using a Dexcom CGM with t:slim X2, the Tandem mobile app will automatically pull your current blood glucose reading. This will then be used to calculate any correction whenever you give yourself insulin.

For example, if your blood sugar is trending lower and you are about to take a dose, tandem will reduce the amount of insulin to help prevent further drops.

Alert on our iPhone

Alert on our iPhone

Pump alerts are displayed on your phone as well. If there’s a blockage, you’ve run out of insulin, your battery is low, or ControlIQ has increased insulin due to high blood sugar, you can see the alert from your phone, rather than having to take the pump out of your pocket.

You already have your phone readily available alongside your Apple Watch. The combination of Mobile Bolus, notifications and pump information provides a much better experience than the pump alone.

Everything is not perfect with this new app. You still have to clear alerts directly from the pump, as they can’t be programmed from the phone.

But this new update shows a lot of progress that diabetics legitimately feel.

Tandem t: X2 Slim Cost and Availability

Tandem t:slim X2 has been on the market for a few years now and continues to receive software updates. Without insurance, the retail out-of-pocket cost of a prescription is about $4,000. What you pay out of pocket varies based on what coverage you have — or don’t have.

For existing Tandem t:slim X2 owners, the portal has update training.

#Handson #Tandem #Slim #Insulin #Delivery #Feature #iPhone #Connected #Camel

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.