Tandem t:slim X2 and t:flex Insulin Pump 2018 Reviews

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Pros & Cons of the Tandem t:slim X2 and t:flex Insulin Pumps

tandem tslim x2 insulin pump

  • Unique Advantages: Pros

    • X2 has software/features updatable through download from website
    • Bright, full-color touch screen
    • Modern, high-tech appearance
    • Compact, thin dimensions
    • Rapid number entry/fastest bolus entry
    • 2-Way Bluetooth (X2) allows full integration with multiple devices, including smartphones & CGM
    • X2 displays data from Dexcom G5
    • T:flex holds up to 480u
    • Charges; No disposable batteries
    • Can calculate boluses up to 50 units (60u with t:flex)
    • Site-change reminder w/customizable day & time
    • Graphic on-screen history display
    • Carb counting calculatorTemp basal up to 250%, 72 hrs
    • IOB & time remaining displayed on home screen
    • Missed bolus reminders customizable by day of week
    • Alert for high temperatures
    • Secondary basal programs can be linked with secondary bolus formulas
    • Limited unintended insulin movement with changes in pump position
    • X2 with G6 and Basal IQ – Low prediction, basal suspend feature (suspends on prediction of BG 80 or lower, restarts basal with 1mg/dl rise in BG in suspension)
  • Potential Drawbacks: CONS

    • Hybrid closed loop features pending Small buttons can be difficult to activate; screen goes blank if buttons missed 3x
    • Unlock procedure required to perform any programming
    • No attached clip (must put in a case that has a clip)
    • Tubing connector looks “medical,” can snag on clothing
    • Proprietary tubing connection, cannot use third party infusion sets.
    • Basal & bolus settings in same time slots; may take several steps to edit
    • Extra confirmation steps with all programming
    • Weak vibrate mechanism
    • No meter link
    • Company’s long-term viability is uncertain; pump is their only product
    • Requires charging 1-2x/week

About the Author:

Integrated Diabetes Services is the worldwide leader in one-on-one consulting for people who use insulin. Diabetes “coaching” services are available in-person and remotely via phone and the internet for children and adults.

10 Comments

  1. Lisa Hoffmeyer June 12, 2018 at 7:26 pm - Reply

    I’ve been wearing a Tandem pump for nearly 4 years. I liked it very much until the nice case with an alligator clip broke and I got one of the new style cases you are using for your new pumps. It’s AWFUL !!!! It’s hard to clip on my waist band. Makes it impossible to push the on off button. But worst of all, it took dynamite to get my pump out to change the cartridge. I took it off and hoped the new cases when I get a new pump would be better. Just talked to my friend with a brand new system. SAME problem. She could not deliver a dose when she was high. The pump faces away from her when clipped to waist, and she cannot get it off. I won’t buy the new one this fall unless this is corrected.

    • alicia downs June 18, 2018 at 5:42 pm - Reply

      To clarify IDS does not produce the Tandem pump or cases 🙂
      We agree the metal clip on the current case was largely a response to pump wearers that many other clips have plastic parts that break. but the static wear angle and tightness are an issue. We do find that the button issue does get easier to press with use, but it is very stiff when new.

      • John in Alaska January 16, 2019 at 6:17 pm - Reply

        I have the new X2 TSlim pump by Tandem, with the slip in case and a metal clip. The clip won’t break, but it lets go much too easily. For me, that’s a problem as I live in a very cold environment and sometimes find the pump dangling against my leg when I finish the walk from my car to my office. Needless to say, insulin doesn’t like sub-zero temps very well. My solution for now is to put the pump in my pocket. When it’s time to get a new pump, I’ll be evaluating any other options, though the Tandem pump will still be a choice as I really like the functionality of the pump itself. The mention of the connector is also a problem. I like Medtronic’s connector much more than Tandem’s.

        • alicia downs January 21, 2019 at 7:11 pm - Reply

          agreed on all counts
          the clip is often either too tight, or too lose (You can tighten it up by giving it a pinch with some pliers since it’s just a bent piece of metal (Like a paperclip) Or you can use a secondary holder like an old school phone case etc. Myabetic makes one that fits the X2 nicely.

  2. Pat July 10, 2018 at 6:56 pm - Reply

    I wear tandem have for over a couple of years I have had issues a couple of times your tech team is horrible you guys don’t back your product it takes to elements in a company to be successful witch is product and customer service you lack at the customer service people like me type one diabetics rely on you guys to do your jobs when your product fails to replace it not to tell me lets see if it happens again that plain stupid

    • alicia downs August 29, 2018 at 2:07 pm - Reply

      Hi Pat,
      To clarify, Integrated Diabetes Services does not sell Tandem pumps. WE are an independent diabetes education and consulting company. We are not affiliated wih any device or pharmaceuticals companies.

  3. Tina Welsh October 23, 2018 at 5:01 pm - Reply

    I paid a lot of money for the Tandem pump and in less than a years it stoped working and had to wait til I called back a second time and they sent me a (new) one. Well it wasn’t new it was refurbished and now a month later have issues with this one always showing 100 % on batterie charge and my blood sugars are high so now the pump is malfunctioning and all the technicians keep say let’s wait and see if the battery changes in 2 more hours and it’s already been 24 hours. Wow really! Called everyone I had numbers for from when I bought this pump a year ago and NO ONE! Can help! I spent a lot of money for a pump that lasted a year! And maybe technicall support will finally send a refurbished one ( someone else’s old broken pump). I will be saving for a new pump from Medtronics!

  4. Payton December 21, 2018 at 11:26 pm - Reply

    I would recommend avoiding Tandem Insulin pumps at all costs. Since switching to a Tandem pump, most of my sites have failed prematurely. The reservoir/cartridge will stop delivering consistently at 25 units, which (if you’re like me) and need to stretch out your supplies as long as possible, is a serious detriment. Every single time you change the cartidge/tubing, you are REQUIRED to waste Ten units of Insulin for Priming (for those of us doing the math at home, that’s 100 units every ten sites, a HUGE waste and frankly very greedy move by Tandem). The touch screen was described as “innovative”, but it is extremely sensitive. I regularly (we’re talking more than 3/5 days of the week) wake up to find that rolling over in my sleep has suspended my pump by accident. We’re talking about bloodsugars of 400+, essentially ruining my A1C for an option the user cannot change! The cases provided to me by Tandem were too tight-fitting, and required the sheer herculean force of two adults to remove when I next needed a cartridge change. If you forget to charge your insulin pump electronically (an option so annoying I would rather use syringes, and may have to since one box of supplies is 600+ for Tandem, which is two week’s pay for me), the Tandem pump will erase all saved settings. The charge time is very close to one full hour, which means that (unless you feel comfortable just not having insulin for an hour), you are LITERALLY attached to an outlet and can’t move around (which frequently drives me to actual tears, as it makes me feel like a cyborg rather than an accomplished Diabetic with choices).

    Other pumps give you a low battery warning that starts days before you truly require a change, but Tandem gives you a few hours if you’re lucky. I started to cry the first time my pump died, especially since that feature was never disclosed to me by my trainer. The tubing segment (or whatever ridiculous name Tandem gave it) is far from environmentally friendly, and so much as sneezing on one will cause it to set off the tubing-insertion piece early, ruining the site unless you feel like being a mad scientist and lumping your medical supplies into acceptable condition. If your bloodsugar is high, and you’re crying from the pain, this makes even a simple site change a horrible experience. Once, I changed my site THREE TIMES in one day, all correctly, and found that ALL THREE picklines into my body had failed. That could easily have been a hospital trip if I hadn’t realized the problem, and almost was regardless.

    Travelling through an airport requires a full-body search, as Tandem pump trainers warn you the device will fail under ANY scanner.

    This over-priced machine is irritating, the supplies over-priced and low-quality, and the features are far outstripped by the cons. Do NOT choose Tandem under any circumstances.

    Now, if you’ll excuse me – I have to change a DAY-OLD SITE because it stopped working, AGAIN. When I removed the “old” one, it was in perfect condition with a straight pickline, brand new tubing, and new cartridge with more than 100+ units of Insulin.

    STAY AWAY FROM TANDEM!

    • alicia downs December 27, 2018 at 2:07 pm - Reply

      HI payton, I wanted to reach out and invite you to give IDS a call. We would very much like to help you through some of your struggles.
      The issues you have mentioned are dramatically different from what our patients report.
      The Tandem X2 requires a series of three specific touches to unlock the pump and then suspending insulin delivery would require a minimum of three additional touches. Three random screen touches deactivates the screen and locks the pump for safety. The infusion sets and insertes used by Tandem dataDiabetes are largely the same as others on the market, with the exception of the Tlock attachment.
      Charging typically is needed every 3 days with sensor use and weekly without it, and takes about 20 minutes for a full charge. You should get an alert when your battery falls below 20%, roughly a 12 hour period, if you are not getting alerts your pumps settings may be set to vibrate and are not being felt as the vibration is overly weak. A complete battery drain should not cause data loss (I have had a total battery drain happen a couple of times when I’ve ignored earlier warnings to recharge of just forgotten!) The only data loss was from my CGM session needing to be restarted when the pump restarts (because I do not have my Dexcom on my phone) The issues you are having sound very extraordinary and we would like to work with you to resolve them and facilitate an improved pumping experience.

    • Jaimee December 28, 2018 at 2:07 pm - Reply

      You can pull the insulin out of the cartridge if your site fails, and you can also just change the site, not having to change the entire set up.

      I don’t know how it is suspending in the night, I’ve had mine 4 years and have never had that happen. Did you disable the lock somehow?

      I flew from St. Louis to San Diego in September and had zero issues with my pump and Dexcom.

      I agree on the wasted insulin due to priming, but that would happen with any system except Omnipod. You have to prime the tubing or you would be giving yourself air for the first 12 or so units.

      The clip – they do have lots of room for improvement, but I don’t keep my pump in it’s case. I just slip it in my pocket.

      Diabetes sucks, but I personally love my Tslim X2 and couldn’t imagine having to go back to multiple injections and blood sugar checks. Hope it works out better for you.

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