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Understanding the Bolus Wizard Feature

By Naomi Kingery

Social Community Manager

Posted:  7/9/2013 3:00 PM


When I think of the Bolus Wizard, I think of a Wizard named “Merlin” with a magical wand and special powers. Although the Bolus Wizard on your insulin pump doesn’t have powers, it is actually a calculator (a calculator I don’t recommend using when taking your math test but definitely one that you can use for diabetes management). Not everyone uses the Bolus Wizard, but I think it’s one of the best features of my insulin pump.

The Bolus Wizard is a special feature that uses information from your insulin pump to calculate food and bolus correction amounts. It relies on information including:

• Current blood glucose (BG) reading
• Pre-set carb ratio
• Pre-set insulin sensitivity
• Active Insulin

It takes into account a lot of the individual settings that you and your healthcare team already have set up, so it takes only the push of a few buttons for it to do all of the calculations it needs in order to recommend your next dose of insulin. But wait, there’s more! Say for instance you have a high BG and you are trying to correct it with a bolus, how might the Bolus Wizard assist you? If you enter in that high number into your Bolus Wizard, it takes into consideration the amount of active insulin that is still lingering in your body from any previous boluses and only gives you the remainder of insulin needed to bring your BG within target. This way, for example, if I were to bolus 3.5 units for lunch and an hour later my blood sugar was high, it would actually take into account the fact that I gave insulin just an hour ago, then my pump might recommend a lower dose of insulin than if it were to just know that my blood sugar was high. That is valuable information!

Tip: I was freaking out one time and called the 24-Hour HelpLine because my Square Wave Bolus feature wasn’t “working,” but as it turned out, it was doing exactly what it was supposed to. Did you know that if you use the Bolus Wizard with the Dual Wave or Square Wave feature  turned on, and you enter in a BG that is above the target BG range set in your pump, the feature will NOT appear as an option? Why? Because your BG is high and your pump is saying you need insulin now. For those that don’t know, the Square Wave feature is used for extended insulin delivery (like if you eat a meal with high fat that takes longer to digest or for those with delayed food digestion).

To end on a high note, what I like the most about the Bolus Wizard feature other than the fact I no longer have to do math calculations in my head and that it prevents me from overcorrecting, is that I am ultimately in control. If I don’t like the recommendation that is calculated for me I can always change the value at the end of the day to meet MY needs. To learn more, check out the video below and review the “Bolus Wizard Quick Reference Guide” available on our website.

- 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.

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Valerie Pack

Posted on Tue Jul 09 02:13:37 GMT 2013

I'm willing!

Colleen Brannan

Posted on Wed Jul 10 02:16:15 GMT 2013

Love reviewing info I've been taught awhile ago.

Brenda Waddle

Posted on Wed Jul 10 16:14:32 GMT 2013

I still don't know how to give myself a fixed rate bolus after the pump has been suspended and turned back on.


Posted on Wed Jul 10 18:48:41 GMT 2013

Brenda, I’ll have a member our team reach out to you shortly to try to help answer your questions.


Posted on Thu Jul 18 01:54:14 GMT 2013

Thank you for posting this. It's great to be reminded of how it works without going to fetch the 1 inch plus book with detailed operations and settings

Donna Bickle

Posted on Thu Dec 19 03:57:44 GMT 2013

I got my Insulin Pump 2 weeks ago. My blood sugar has been pretty good up until last night and all day today and this evening. I do not understand how to use Bolus especially if it is high like it has been since mentioned.

Thank you


Posted on Thu Dec 19 18:20:23 GMT 2013

Thanks for reaching out to us, Donna. I will have a member of my team contact you to walk you through how to use the bolus feature. Please let us know if you have any other questions.

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