ALERT: Due to the inclement weather across much of the country, Medtronic deliveries are currently experiencing delays and there will be longer than normal hold times on the phone. Visit www.Diabetes.Shop if you need to place an order, get a sensor or belt clip replacement, or check the status of your supply order. X

In The First Few Hours of a New Sensor

Ever wonder what happens during those first few hours of your new sensor wear? What’s happening to the sensor, and why do you have to wait two hours before you start getting sensor readings? While it may be tempting to want a shorter initialization time frame, it’s important to follow the steps you learned in training to ensure your Enlite sensor performs at its best throughout the six days of wear.

Let’s review what’s really happening during the start-up time…

Step 1: Wetting Period- Five minutes

Right after inserting your sensor, the first step is the “wetting period”,which is the time between sensor insertion and transmitter connection. During the wetting period, the interstitial fluid of your body tissue (that’s the fluid between your cells and under your skin) wets the sensor electrode. The transmitter requires a certain amount of wetting before it will turn on.

With the Enlite sensor, the wetting period can take up to five minutes. However, you’ll want to connect your MiniLink transmitter as quickly as possible (within five minutes) after inserting the sensor to ensure optimal sensor performance. If the sensor sits under your skin longer than five minutes without the transmitter attached, a chemical reaction can occur and hydrogen peroxide can build up around the sensor site, causing performance issues. So avoid letting too much time go by between inserting your sensor and connecting your transmitter.

Step 2: Initialization Period- Two hours

Once the transmitter is properly connected, and if the sensor has had enough time to become “wet”, the green light on the transmitter will flash within 10 seconds, and the second step begins – the two hour “initialization period”. This is the two hour period where the device will begin to measure sensor signals. The initialization is built in to allow the device to create a stable signal from the sensor before attempting to calibrate and calculate sensor readings.

You’ll also know you entered into the two-hour initialization period when your pump displays WARM-UP on the screen. This means you’ve started a new sensor or reconnected an old sensor. During this initialization period, the sensor is not ready to take glucose measurements, so avoid entering a BG meter reading until your pump alerts METER BG NOW, which notifies you that the initialization period had ended, and the sensor is ready for its first calibration.

If the sensor is not wetting properly, you may receive Sensor Error and Lost Sensor alerts during the two-hour initialization period. If these alerts occur, don’t worry. If a Sensor Error occurs, simply clear it. If a Lost Sensor occurs within 20 minutes of a sensor start, select start NEW SENSOR. You do not need to replace your sensor or remove/reconnect your transmitter. Your pump will alert METER BG NOW about two hours after you connect the MiniLink transmitter to the sensor. You can read more about these errors here.

It’s fascinating how much takes place during those first few hours, right? Happy Sensing!

Want to learn more about other aspects of our CGM technologies? Let us know by posting a comment.


Medtronic Diabetes insulin infusion pumps, continuous glucose monitoring systems and associated components are limited to sale by or on the order of a physician and should only be used under the direction of a healthcare professional familiar with the risks associated with the use of these systems. MiniMed 530G with Enlite is intended for the delivery of insulin and continuous glucose monitoring for the management of diabetes mellitus by persons 16 years of age or older who require insulin.

Pump therapy is not recommended for people who are unwilling or unable to perform a minimum of four blood glucose tests per day. Insulin pumps use rapid-acting insulin. If your insulin delivery is interrupted for any reason, you must be prepared to replace the missed insulin immediately.

The information provided by CGM systems is intended to supplement, not replace, blood glucose information obtained using a home glucose meter. A confirmatory fingerstick is required prior to making adjustments to diabetes therapy. MiniMed 530G with Enlite is not intended to be used directly for preventing or treating hypoglycemia but to suspend insulin delivery when the user is unable to respond to the Threshold Suspend alarm and take measures to prevent or treat hypoglycemia themselves.

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