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Top 5 Air Travel FAQ

By Amanda Sheldon

Managing Editor

Posted:  6/2/2011 12:00 AM


Summer is here and it’s time for many of us to hit the road – or air. Before you set out to satisfy your wanderlust, check out our answers to the top five questions we receive about air travel with an insulin pump and/or continuous glucose monitor (CGM).

Also, don’t forget to revisit our recent entry on TSA Screenings to get an update on airport security guidance. And, if you’re lucky enough to be travelling internationally, to Hawaii or Alaska or taking a cruise, check out our Travel Loaner Program.

Bon voyage!

Q1. Should I unlink my meter on a flight?
Yes, when on an airplane, you should unlink your blood glucose meter from your insulin pump and manually test your glucose levels using a blood glucose meter.

Q2. Can I use my CGM when flying?
Yes, if you wear a continuous glucose monitor (CGM) system, it is safe for use on U.S. commercial airlines. If you’re questioned by airline personnel about the use of your device, show them your airport emergency card.

Q3. What if, even after I show my airport emergency card, the airline asks me to turn off my CGM?
If you show your airport emergency card to airline personnel and they still request that you turn off your CGM system, you must comply.

Q4. If I turn off my CGM, how does that impact my CareLink reports?
If you are asked to turn off your CGM, you will have a "data gap" when uploading data into CareLink® Personal, where information is missing from the period of time when your CGM system was turned off.

Q5. What do I do if I need Medtronic support while I’m outside the U.S.?
When travelling internationally, be sure to keep our contact number with you (1.818.576.5555) as well as contact information for our Worldwide Sales Offices in the areas you’re visiting. They may be able to help you source extra insulin pump or CGM supplies should something unexpected happen.

- 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.
- Successful operation of the insulin infusion pumps and/or continuous glucose monitoring systems requires adequate vision and hearing to recognize alerts and alarms.

Medtronic Diabetes Insulin Infusion Pumps
- Insulin pump therapy is not recommended for individuals who are unable or unwilling 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.

Medtronic Diabetes Continuous Glucose Monitoring (CGM) Systems
- 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 treatment.
- Insertion of a glucose sensor may cause bleeding or irritation at the insertion site. Consult a physician immediately if you experience significant pain or if you suspect that the site is infected.

Please visit for complete safety information.


Michael Hoskins

Posted on Sun Jun 12 06:11:34 GMT 2011

I'd be interested to hear any feedback on how often people use the Airport Emergency Cards and the type of responses they get from those.


Posted on Fri Jun 28 00:44:12 GMT 2013

I don't even know where my Airport Emergency card is. I have traveled out of the US and in the states and have never had any problems with security other than I usually always have a "pat down" and they test my hands for chemicals. I have never been asked to turn off my pump. Traveling has not be a problem for me.

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