New Pump, Take 2

I still have the box that my new pump was delivered in.  That’s because I really haven’t had it for very long, and I haven’t unpacked all the swag that it came with yet.  (I live in a bit of chaos this days – don’t judge.)  The box says it was delivered on Wednesday, August 22nd.  That’s less than a month ago.

So I wasn’t really expecting this last night:

This morning, after dealing with Medtronic (right or wrong, I put it off until morning) I looked back at Scott’s post on Motor Errors from a few months ago.  It made me think that maybe I shouldn’t have been so surprised when this message came up last night.

The woman I spoke with from Medtronic technical support explained to me that a sudden increase in pressure on the piston can cause a Motor Error to display, and often this is just the result of an occlusion or otherwise bad set.  In that respect, it’s similar to the No Delivery error, but is a result of sudden pressure rather than a gradual buildup.  She said that this was most often the reason for the error message, and not an actual problem with the pump itself.  Interestingly, the explanation Scott was given at the time of his Motor Error was slightly different.  I don’t know which is the correct explanation.

Either way, the rep had me run a diagnostic test (the old air-filled-reservoir-with-tubing test).  My pump failed said test.

So I’m getting a new pump tonight.  Or, rather, a new new pump.

Since I bought my first pump in 2007 (this pump is only my second purchased pump), including loaners while malfunctioning pumps were being replaced, the pump arriving via courier tonight will be #8.

This.  Is.  Crazy.


13 responses to this post.

  1. wow. i’m thoroughly disappointed.
    that happened to me after being on the pump for half a year but I’ve never gotten it since.


  2. Have you read Wil’s stuff on the motor errors? Look at his posts from April/May, 2012.


  3. My GOODNESS. I can’t believe you’re going through this AGAIN. Agh–like you don’t have enough stuff to deal with right now, right? Sucks.


  4. Ugh. This is what made me switch from Medtronic. I got so sick of motor errors waking me up, i started to not trust my pump. I am so sorry you’re battling with it.


  5. Hearing this story makes me, yet again, question my love for Medtronic pumps. It’s still my first choice, but they’re really testing me.

    By the way, I had a more recent post on Motor Errors (here: ) in which I came up with a new theory on why they keep happening. Is your new one the same model as the old one, or is it a more advanced one that lets you set basals with tighter precision? You can be case #2 in my very limited, unscientific study.

    I’m not so sure that I believe the pressure-on-the-piston thing, as I was told Motor Errors are based on electronic measurements and not physical sensors. But I can see how pressure may affect it. Ever connect the tubing to the reservoir the wrong way and try pushing the plunger? It goes a little, but then springs right back. I can see how that can cause a motor error. (Here I go playing scientist again about things I know nothing about).

    Also, with my second-to-last pump (Gamma), they had me do the air-in-the-reservoir test, but with the last one (Delta), they just had me test it without a reservoir at all. I’m not sure why they changed tests. Curious — how did yours fail?

    I’ve got to admit, Medtronic’s service is awesome. I just wish I didn’t have enough experience to say that. Good luck with your new one! (By the way, I believe their policy is to give you a NEW pump if it is replacing one that’s less than 30 days old, otherwise you get a factory-refurbished one. It looks like you’re right near that threshold; make sure you get a new one!)


    • Hey Scott. Yes, mine is the “more advanced model”. I totally agree with your newest theory, and was thinking that myself, actually. It definitely makes sense that a more precise pump would be more likely to pick up on errors related to precision (which also makes your customer service rep’s explanation seem more plausible than mine).

      My test failure today happened when my pump primed to the half-full reservoir point and then flashed “0.0” to fill the tubing. It’s supposed to go all the way to the “Low Reservoir” point before that happens. Actually, one time it still showed a full reservoir when the “0.0” came up. Something I found kind of funny was that she made me run the test a few times. If it had passed after two failures, would she have given me the “A-OK”…?

      The “refurbishing” discussion is an interesting one too, as I was told today that none of the pumps are refurbished because the cases can’t be opened. I see you discussed this in your post as well. Seems that “refurbished” is an issue of semantics. Regardless, I did just receive a brand spankin’ new pump in a sealed box since it was within the 90-day period. So I’m as happy as I could be about my particular situation, I guess.

      Note that I did introduce myself to my new pump this way: “Hi, I’m Beth, and I’ll be your host for the next few months.” :S


      • Sorry to butt in, but they do refurbish the pumps. While at Medtronic in March, the chief quality inspector told us the process of pump returns and how they determine if it can be refurbished or trashed. So do please make sure that yours is a brand-new one since it’s within the 30-days. 🙂

      • Thanks Sarah. This is kind of the conclusion I’m coming to from reading other blogs/comments as well. I think it’s an issue of semantics (i.e. what exactly does “refurbished” mean). Regardless, I now don’t like the answer I was given. BUT, I do have a brand new pump in a shrink-wrapped box, so I’m happy for now.

  6. That’s crazy, I’ve had the same pump since 2004


  7. That is crazy! Hope you still have that borrowed pump to use until later….
    And also, hope, by the time this pump finishes its life, the Roche Team breaks into Canada, as I had Accu Chek pumps in the last 6 years, and never had such problems, which you had recently! I do recommend it, but know, it isn’t available there yet. Good luck!


  8. Oh no! That stinks.


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