Advertisement

49 Responses

  1. Pieces of My Life
    Pieces of My Life November 22, 2010 at 4:36 am | | Reply

    Keep in mind too that if you’re pulled aside for additional screening and they wand the pod, it will deactivate. Not sure if that happens in every case, but I once went through a pat down and wanding with my pod on, and specifically asked them to avoid that area of my belly. An hour later I was on the plane and feeling funky, tested and my bg was approaching 300, where an hour earlier when I left my car it had been 97. It turned out that, even though they’d steered around the pod, they’d apparently gotten close enough to deactivate it. (The PDM never warned me the pod was deactivated, by the way, which makes things even worse.)

    I hate this, all of it. On the one hand, I suppose it’s good they’re taking extra measures to safeguard us. And I wouldn’t say I feel moral outrage about this, I know why these measures are taken, and I know it’s impossible for TSA to have thought up every scenario at this point. But I do hate that terrorism has driven us to this, and it’s definitely going to make me steer away from traveling anytime soon.

    1. elliepope
      elliepope October 17, 2012 at 9:58 am | | Reply

      When I flew in January I raised my tee shirt and pointed out the CGM and the Omnipod. I declined a private room. The TSA person dusted my pod and CGM transmitter for ‘exposives’ and on I went. No problem. Never heard wanding deactivated pods. Not sure about that one.

  2. Jasmine
    Jasmine November 22, 2010 at 6:40 am | | Reply

    Thanks for covering this so thoroughly. I must say, though, that the more I read, the less comfortable I am with these procedures. Marginalization is never fun.

  3. Sysy Morales
    Sysy Morales November 22, 2010 at 6:41 am | | Reply

    One shouldn’t have to fake looking harmless especially if we are…BUT I find it makes things go more smoothly when I give direct contact with officials and smile. They have long hard days too, and when I seem pleasant and kind, they are more patient with me. Aside from that I do always carry doctor’s notes although no one has asked to see them. The last several times I travelled I no longer used a pump and it was much easier. People do tend to be like, what the heck is that thing?

    Aside from all that, I would hate to be patted down. I think many of us don’t trust each other and this makes the procedure go much worse. I’d like to say I trust my fellow American but, I don’t always.

    Another thing. If someone has been patted down and doesn’t like it, this isn’t the same as being groped. I hope people who use the term groped are not exaggerating. I hope they are making a major case against the groper. Otherwise they are just lying.

  4. Leighann of D-Mom Blog
    Leighann of D-Mom Blog November 22, 2010 at 8:20 am | | Reply

    This is particularly worrisome to me since my insulin pump wearing child is only six. I would hate for her to have a traumatic experience when she flies. And I would seriously flip out if someone touched her or separated her from me.

    I see Insulet’s statement above, but what is their specific recommendation regarding their pump? Should the PDM go through the x-ray belt with carry on luggage or not? Should the pod be subjected to a wand or not? I would like those answers regardless of the new TSA guidelines.

    As an aside, when I recently flew out of Indianapolis, both my brother and I had to do the full body scan. It was pretty quick. We had to stand there making moose antlers with our hands above our heads. But at no point did they really explain the procedure or that someone could see beneath our clothing. Indy was probably the quickest and easiest security stop I have gone through (besides our local tiny airport).

  5. Michael Hoskins
    Michael Hoskins November 22, 2010 at 9:55 am | | Reply

    I always assume I’m going to get wanded, hassled, and will face delays – so always arrive early, have that invaluable letter from doc/endo saying you’re Type 1 and have a pump/CGM/supplies on hand, and plan on identifying it.. If you have any issue with being searched or patted down in this matter, then I’d respectfully ask that you either 1.) re-think wearing the pump/device through security; 2.) Rethink flying and consider another mode of transportation. These are, sadly, the times we live in. I wonder what happens if someone with less-than-honest intentions decides to pretend to be a PWD and wear a pump filled with dangerous materials… Then what? I haven’t flown recently since this has gone into effect, but I see it as a necessary-evil but one I am more than able to plan ahead for.

  6. Lulu Morrison
    Lulu Morrison November 22, 2010 at 9:56 am | | Reply

    I flew from Boston to Washington, D.C. several weeks ago. When I was asked if I had any liquids, I told the T.S.A. officer that I was wearing an insulin pump. I had to go through the invasive scanner anyway and it picked up the fact that I was indeed wearing a pump. I was immediately patted down in a public space by a rude officer who began to yell, “I need privacy, I need privacy!” The passengers who were behind me were held up until I was ushered into a kitchenette after all of the male officers who were on their coffee breaks left the room. (Please note: At least 10 minutes had elapsed by this time.) I was patted down again by the rude female officer. I lifted up my shirt and showed her my pump and my CGM. Another female officer was present and I had to rub my hands over the pump. Then they ran an instrument over my hands to see if I had any explosives on my skin.
    When I was returning home through B.W.I. Airport, I asked if I could please avoid the scanner because I knew they were going to frisk me again. This T.S.A. officer was nice and said that I just happened to be in the line that used the old machines. Luckily, I passed through without incident.
    I realize that the government needs to have a system in place to protect the flying public. I do not think that any officer, however, has the right to yell at a passenger and create a public spectacle that has all eyes focused on her. I was completely up front and honest about the fact that I was wearing a pump before I walked through the invasive scanner. I was exceedingly cooperative and polite because I knew I would never be able to board the plane if I expressed any frustration. I was very fortunate in that this incident happened a few weeks before the truly invasive pat downs were implemented. I have no intention of flying again until these invasive procedures are eliminated.

  7. William Lee Dubois
    William Lee Dubois November 22, 2010 at 9:59 am | | Reply

    Last time I flew (mid summer), my home airport had already deployed a full body scanner. I had disconnected my CoZmo pump and threw it in my carry on, along with my CGM monitor. When realized that they were using a full body scan I told the TSA agent that I had an implanted medical device on my arm and a pump connection on my stomach. He radioed the guy running the scanner to expect to see these, which they did. After passing through the scanner, he “patted down” JUST my arm where the Dexcom transmitter was and I was on my way in no time. Hopefully everyone else will have it as easy most of the time.

  8. k2
    k2 November 22, 2010 at 10:02 am | | Reply

    AMy –
    Thanks for the detailed post! I experienced a very agressive & “bitchy” search last February: http://diabetesaliciousness.blogspot.com/2010/02/flying-friendly-skies-if-you-have.html
    and I’m NOT looking forward to being scanned, searched, frisked & interrogated by airport security again!
    Last time I flew (July) I hid my pump in my bag and I’m glad I did.
    I’m dreading my next trip to the airport!
    Kelly K

  9. tmana
    tmana November 22, 2010 at 10:25 am | | Reply

    There have already been viral videos posted of three-year-olds (who are supposed to be exempt from pat-downs) full-body-searched, and horror stories, including an ostomy patient having his bag roughly removed (and left to stew in his own wastes for the duration of the pre-flight). The bottom line is, the government does not want honest people traveling. They want us to be so afraid of everything that we never leave our homes, relinquish all means of self-defense, and just sit calmly waiting for them to take us away and do whatever it is they want to at the time.
    While “don’t eat the pudding” and “don’t drink the Kool-Aid” are overexaggerating the immediate situation, said pudding and beverage have already been made…

  10. Scott Strange
    Scott Strange November 22, 2010 at 11:18 am | | Reply

    Thanks for that run down Amy, I’m glad to see that I was correct not to run my Ping or Dexcom thru the xray machine

    I traveled by air last week and described my experiences at http://strangelydiabetic.com/2010/11/19/on-the-road-with-the-big-d/ and http://strangelydiabetic.com/2010/11/22/after-the-pat-down-not-even-a-phone-call/

  11. B2
    B2 November 22, 2010 at 11:18 am | | Reply

    Ive been wearing an Animas pump for several years and fly 3-4 times per year, I truly do not feel violated etc when subjected to additional screening because I have a pump on. I smile, I’m nice and I inform the TSA agent that I’m wearing a pump, Ive always been treated well. Dont cop an attitude or feel victimized, and things will go well. The new screenings don’t bother me and I truly don’t understand what all the fuss is about. If we didn’t take these measures and another plane was hijacked, people would whine that enough isn’t been done to protect the public. Just chill people.

  12. VirtueB
    VirtueB November 22, 2010 at 11:31 am | | Reply

    Erm, I know this is a minor detail in all of this, but I wear an Animas and it’s not metal. Just the clip is metal, so I have to take that off when walking through the (old) scanners. Just thought I’d mention, so it’s one less worry for people going through.

    Thnx,
    V.

  13. Ophir
    Ophir November 22, 2010 at 11:42 am | | Reply

    Amy, Thank you so much for the hard work in putting this together for all of us T1′s out there! As always, your blog is very informative. I’m going to share with my readers as well. Thank you!!!! Ophir

  14. Allison Blass
    Allison Blass November 22, 2010 at 12:19 pm | | Reply

    I know people on both pumps and it seems very random when or if the pump will set off a metal detector. I have a Minimed and I usually don’t set it off, but occasionally I do. I think it’s just a general idea to be aware that it can happen, not necessarily that it will.

    -Allison

  15. Jen
    Jen November 22, 2010 at 12:28 pm | | Reply

    A great set of information.

    To, perhaps, provide an alternative to all of the ‘horror’ stories we’ve been hearing, I have flown three times since these new regulations have been in effect and have not experienced a single problem. I have worn my pump and my CGM through the standard screening/metal detector and never set anything off. Twice I told TSA beforehand I had an Insulin pump, and in both cases they said, “Not a problem”. Once (yesterday) I did not even get the chance to explain. They glanced down, saw it, and simply waived me through. (I should say, I am on the Medtronic pump and CGM, which I know is less likely to cause a problem).

    Another friend I was traveling with was on the Animas pump. She beeped and went through a painless (other than adding an additional 30 seconds or so onto our trip through security) and very ‘respectful’ pat down. (Something that I’ve experienced before several times because I’ve left coins in my pocket–not because of my pump; although I do recognize that the hand positioning, etc. has changed since years ago when I experienced the pat down).

    My attitude is based on my belief that the TSA is not out to humiliate all people with diabetes. I do not believe that they have a hidden agenda to treat us all as weirdos or to prove any sort of point. I feel that they are doing what is currently the set standard in hopes to make our flights safer.

    Just like everything in our lives, the technology will progress quickly. Good luck to everyone in their travels up until then!

  16. Colleen
    Colleen November 22, 2010 at 1:36 pm | | Reply

    For the two years that I’ve worn an Animas pump, I’ve set the machine off every single time I go through. Due to this, I have always been subject to a full-body pat down. Until my most recent trip (yesterday) this did not bother me in the least. It was completely respectful and all the agents understood what an insulin pump was. Now and again, they would swab it/me as well. About a month ago when I flew through DIA (Denver), I was subject to the full body scanner for the first time. In this case, most passengers were being sent through the regular machine, but the TSA guy had me go through the full body scanner so I wouldn’t have to be patted down. In this case, I wasn’t patted down, but they did swab both me and my pump (which, according to the TSA agent at the time (Oct), they’re supposed to do every single time someone has an insulin pump).

    Yesterday, I went through O’Hare. While I was able to go through the regular machine, my pump did of course set the machine off and I was subject to a pat down—a more invasive pat down that previously. The TSA agent was much more aggressive than in the past and I felt very uncomfortable as she ran her hand all the way up my thighs and the inside of my jeans. I understand the times we live in and the need to screen these types of devices (it always unnerved me a little bit how little notice they would take to my full plastic bag of sharps and copious liquids, even if I didn’t mention anything), but this is excessive. I couldn’t help thinking the entire time what would happen if I were wearing a skirt, or what kids would be subject to when wearing a pump. As an adult, I don’t like the situation, but I can deal with it. Kids, on the other hand? Completely unacceptable.

  17. Michelle
    Michelle November 22, 2010 at 1:41 pm | | Reply

    I am supposed to travel through security tomorrow with my 10 year old (MM pump and cgm) We are picking up his father coming in from R&R and as family we are allowed to pass through security and go to the gate (even though we do not have tickets) I am seriously trying to consider the following options:
    1) do not go to the gate. There are a handful of other soldiers arriving on the same flight with my husband and all will likely have family at the gate. Would hate for my husband to be the only one who won’t have family there. TSA wins. Diabetes wins. 10 year old boy loses.

    2) attempt to go to the gate and nothing happens: nothing happens, as nothing ever does when we’ve gone through security in the past. 10 year old wins. Diabetes neutral. TSA neutral.

    3) attempt to go to the gate and 10 year old is subjected to a bad search and stresses out, freaks out, and bg goes through the roof for which we’ll have to spend the next 6 hours fixing, tampering his enjoyment of the first few hours with his father. TSA wins again. Diabetes wins again. 10 year old boy loses.

    the last possible scenario is that I attempt to go through the gate but have alerted news prior and have it all get filmed. Wouldn’t it make great headlines? 10 year old wishing to welcome his father home from war subjected to brutal search.

  18. Eric
    Eric November 22, 2010 at 3:29 pm | | Reply

    I just took a trip and was told Insulin Pump -> pat down. Which I did on way out.
    On the way back I forgot to tell them and got no special attention.

    The first screener said it was “policy” to get a pat down if you have a pump. Though I am not sure what policy means here.

  19. Sara My
    Sara My November 22, 2010 at 4:37 pm | | Reply

    Thanks Amy for the great informational post. I notice no one seems to worry about the xray exposures of these total body scanners. I know what the TSA says about how low the radiation and how safe it is, etc. etc. but I am still worried! Who is trained in the use of these machines? how are they sure the levels of radiation are set properly? There have been no independent studies on these machines to insure they are meeting the standards they say they are. I’ll take that intrusive pat down, even though I don’t look forward to it because I do not trust the safety of the xrays – I’ll get over even the rudest pat down but I won’t get over the radiation if there’s a mistake there. .

  20. Scott Strange
    Scott Strange November 22, 2010 at 5:03 pm | | Reply

    @Michelle

    Tom Karlya of the DRI (www.diabetesresearch.org) recommends the following
    ———————————————–

    I have suggested to parents for years—to role play going through security; before traveling with a child with diabetes (and for that matter for any child).

    Don’t tell them it is a game but role play with item using an item that they are not familiar with (something in a tool box could work). Have your spouse stand with their arms extended…..and ‘wand them’ and also ‘pat’ them down; next do your child.

    Have them also do the same to you. Try it a few times before traveling. Kids fear the unknown…make it known, eliminate the fear. I cannot tell you how many parents have thanked me over the years.

  21. Dan
    Dan November 22, 2010 at 5:12 pm | | Reply

    I fly 2-3 times a month and up until this last Thursday had not gone through the full body scanner. I have always left my mini-med in my pants pocket and it has never been detected in the walk-thru. When I went thru the full body scanner at Atlanta I detached the reservoir from the pump and put the pump with my laptop and let it go thru the x-ray. I walked into the scanner and declared my reservoir and was scanned and had no trouble at all.

  22. sara
    sara November 22, 2010 at 5:26 pm | | Reply

    MNMD paper work says specifically to remove the pump when you get an xray or MRI. While I have no problem walking through the metal detector with it tucked in my pocket or bra, I absolutely would NEVER disconnect and put my pump in my carry on back and send it through the xray machine! I would also never disconnect myself from my LIFE SUPPORT and hand it to some one. Oops they dropped it, oh well, so sorry, these are the times we live in…baloney. I don’t even allow my doctor’s receptionist to take it!

    I m OUTRAGED at the new invasive “pat” down” – if you have seen any of the photos or film, it is most definitely sexual groping. All this new safety “theatre” does NOT make us any safer…and if people FEEL safer with these measure, then they are fools.

    As high as my bs will be from all the stress when that hand goes up my thigh tomorrow, after I opt OUT of the Nude O Scope, I expect I may feel a sudden urge to pee….

  23. Amanda
    Amanda November 22, 2010 at 5:58 pm | | Reply

    I’m with Jen – TSA is not dreaming up these things just to make our lives more difficult or humiliating (if we want to debate over whether or not they are affective measures, well, that’s a whole different conversation). I feel like a lot of people commenting here are getting worked up over very little. My Animas pump sets off a lot of the security machines at airports (but not all) and I fly a lot. So I unclip it and put it in my carry on. None of us are going to die because we take off our pumps for the few minutes it takes to put them on the belt and walk through the scanner without them. I realize for omnipod and cgm it isn’t that easy but I also know that those are a lot less likely to set off anything and I’ve rarely (though admittedly occasionally) met the TSA person that wasn’t reasonable when you alerted them to the hardware on your body.

    From what I’m reading here, it seems like the people commenting that are most concerned are the same ones who don’t even travel that often. Yes, there’s a chance that you or your kid might have to be searched. You should be able to prep your child for that possiblity and your chances of getting a TSA person who is going to treat your child with respect are pretty good. To assume otherwise would be to assume that most people in the general population are looking to hurt or humiliate children. TSA employees are regular people just trying to do a job. Like regular people, some are jerks, most are not.

  24. Scott Strange
    Scott Strange November 22, 2010 at 6:06 pm | | Reply

    @michelle

    Tom Karlya of the DRI (www.diabetesresearch.org) recommends the following
    ———————————-

    I have suggested to parents for years—to role play going through security; before traveling with a child with diabetes (and for that matter for any child).

    Don’t tell them it is a game but role play with item using an item that they are not familiar with (something in a tool box could work). Have your spouse stand with their arms extended…..and ‘wand them’ and also ‘pat’ them down; next do your child. Have them also do the same to you.

    Try it a few times before traveling. Kids fear the unknown…make it known, eliminate the fear. I cannot tell you how many parents have thanked me over the years.
    ———————–

    I think that is a good idea

  25. Kelli
    Kelli November 22, 2010 at 7:55 pm | | Reply

    Wow! I am amazed (and apalled) at the treatment listed here. I live in Washington DC and fly out EVERY Sunday or Monday and return home on Thursdays or Fridays. My travel experiences are completely different.

    1. I have the Accu-Chek Spirit and the Guardian CGMS–and do not consider detaching because I am at the airport.
    2. DCA to MSP, have never set off any scanner, the old or the new full body
    3. Have never been pat down
    4. Can count on one hand the times anyone has asked if I am wearing a pager/what is that…simple answer is–no, it’s a pump and that’s that end of our conversation. I get my luggage and head to the lounge.

    I believe I am one of the most defensive people on the planet and do not like or tolerate my diabetes on display or my privacy invaded. With that said, I dont have any travel issues….going up to TSA volunteering information most of them dont even understand will subject you to wanding, touching, and plenty of other things that annoy us all. I dont do that. If they ask, I make it a “matter of fact” response on move on.

    If you do run into an unacceptable issue–write down name, badge #, incident and fire it off to the ADA, media outlets and TSA.

  26. Dan
    Dan November 22, 2010 at 8:14 pm | | Reply

    Seems like much ado about nothing.

  27. Matt Farrell
    Matt Farrell November 22, 2010 at 9:46 pm | | Reply

    I recently traveled from San Jose to Long Beach on Southwest Airlines departing from San Jose and landing at John Wayne Airport (Orange County). I showed my Minimed pump before going through security and only had issues because of my metal belt buckle. I also had a full body scan and didn’t find it invasive or compromising. The TSA staff was very accommodating and friendly. While I strongly support the right to privacy, I think we are making much ado about nothing. TSA’s mission to enhance security and protect flight patrons. There may be a better way to achieve this mission, but nobody has made a convincing argument that these measures won’t deter terrorists. This requirement and change doesn’t bother me.

  28. Bernard Farrell
    Bernard Farrell November 23, 2010 at 6:36 am | | Reply

    Amy, thank you so much for all this useful information. I generally tell the TSA folks when I arrive that I’ve got diabetes. Up to now I’ve received a wanding and a gentle pat down. Next time I’ll be prepared for the enhanced pat down, as I have no shame or hang-ups that shouldn’t be a problem!

  29. ellen cooper
    ellen cooper November 23, 2010 at 7:43 am | | Reply

    Please don’t pull your reservoir out of the pump while you are still attached to it! Even in a controlled environment, this is not a safe maneuver.

  30. Dan
    Dan November 23, 2010 at 6:44 pm | | Reply

    It doesn’t hurt to pull the reservoir out of the pump for the 60 seconds you go through the scanner. There’s nothing unsafe about it.

  31. Mrs. Life
    Mrs. Life November 23, 2010 at 9:41 pm | | Reply

    Oh my goodness, I wasn’t aware that airport scanners are that invasive! I’ve never actually flown out anywhere, which seems like a wise choice with the aggressive forms of inspection and pat downs that seems to be prevalent. I wish they’ll invent a better way to detect dangerous possibles.

  32. Ariella
    Ariella November 23, 2010 at 10:49 pm | | Reply

    Last year while going through Cleveland airport I was pulled aside purely because of my pump. I went through the metal detector, which did not beep and after indicating that the object hanging off of my pocket was a pump, was pulled aside. Every item in my carry on bag was searched and swabbed for presumably, explosives. I was then told explicitly by the TSA agent doing the search- “My brother is also Type I. Hide your pump next time”.

    Now, I always hide my pump in my bra. If I beep then I get patted down and if I don’t, then I don’t and its not a problem. I refuse to go through the new backscatter machines because of radiation and privacy concerns and accept that I may need to be groped in public. But I am most appalled by the fact that the TSA thinks it has a right to my private medical history, which even physicians cannot discuss without risk of being accused of a criminal offense now.

  33. Lee Ann Thill
    Lee Ann Thill November 24, 2010 at 12:49 am | | Reply

    There are a lot of comments here from people who are either putting their devices through the x-ray machine or, for those who’ve encountered the full body scanners, wearing them into the scanner. I’ve been busy keeping up with all of this TSA news of late, and it’s now my understanding that putting the devices through x-ray or the scanner VOIDS the WARRANTY, which people either don’t know, or are possibly disregarding.

    As someone who flies several times a year, I had learned to take security procedures in stride, and didn’t feel bothered by them. However, I’m not OK with the new procedures. I’m concerned about the safety of the full body scanners, but as long as I’m connected to my devices, an Animas pump and MM Guardian, I’m not supposed to use the scanner anyway. That leaves the “enhanced” pat down to which I absolutely refuse to be subjected. Having people touch me in that manner shouldn’t be a condition of flying. I had accepted that wearing medical devices automatically made them scrutinize me more closely, but if wearing medical devices now means that I have no choice but to have an agent’s hand in my pants or touching my breasts and vagina in order to board my plane, that’s completely unacceptable to me, and frankly, I’m appalled that others are just shrugging it off as a sign of the times.

    I’m currently taking a wait and see approach. Thankfully, I can avoid flying until at least the fall because I have some flexibility and can take the time to drive. Although, it’s possible that will include driving to San Fran in the spring by myself, something I’d rather not do, but given the choice, it’s better than the alternative, IMO. Not flying is not something I can do indefinitely however. I’m hoping that by the time I have to step foot into an airport again, TSA will have pulled it’s head out of its arse, and its hands out of people’s pants. In lieu of, or ideally, in addition to that, I’m very hopeful the ADA will have been able to get some firm and consistently implemented guidelines for people with pumps and CGM’s.

  34. Chris
    Chris November 24, 2010 at 8:19 am | | Reply

    Hi, I am against the original upping of security they implemented because of the “underwear bomber”. I find it invasive and offensive, now only to find out people are facing descrimination due to medical conditions.
    I just find it offensive simply because now anybody who wants to fly, is made to look like a criminal until they clear security. I haven’t flown since the new regulations were in effect, but I have seen clips and it looks very uncomfortable (especially for women).

  35. Samantha
    Samantha November 24, 2010 at 9:33 am | | Reply

    For those who go through the ‘old’ metal detector scanners and want to do so while wearing their pump, you can minimize the chances of having it pick up the pump and start the hassle of a more thorough exam just by walking through the scanner SLOWLY. It really makes a difference and for some reason most people try to run through it.

  36. Georges Mom
    Georges Mom November 24, 2010 at 11:12 am | | Reply

    Thanks for this information. We are going to Disney world for Christmas and am grateful for the heads up. knowledge is power and my 13 year old pumper will do very well. I have forwarded this to our family traveling with us. Thanks, a pumpers mom.

  37. The Transportation Safety Authority Screens Travelers Inside and Out | Medical Lessons

    [...] per­spec­tive, there are some prac­ti­cal points that might help. Amy Ten­derich, at Dia­betes Mine, offers tips for indi­vid­u­als with insulin pumps. Trisha Tor­rey has an inter­est­ing piece [...]

  38. Ann in Wisconsin
    Ann in Wisconsin November 24, 2010 at 4:48 pm | | Reply

    Just my 2 cents worth. I wear a minimed pump along with a CGS and haven’t gone through the scanner yet, but believe all pumpers will be automatically pulled out for a pat down. My experience shows TSA can’t handle pumpers and must always err on the side of caution. Previously, each time I gave knowledge of being on an insulin pump, I had the full exam, including a check for explosive residue. When I stopped notification, I stopped being pulled out and wanded, etc. I also found wearing form fitting clothes helped as bulky clothes are a red flag for the agents. This is only advice for those metal detector scanners. My best advice to maintain your dignity would be to drive to a smaller airport which does not have the scanners in place. Hopefully, TSA will get more diabetes friendly in the future, but can’t count on it.

  39. Myra
    Myra November 25, 2010 at 11:00 pm | | Reply

    I flew the week before thanksgiving from O’Hare to Newark NJ and back. While the TSA screeners at Ohare were both competent and kind, in NJ I was subjected to the new enhanced patdown. Firstly, I didnt appreciate the breast patdown with the “back of the screeners hand” on my personal zones! I don’t wear a underwire bra (or any for that matter). I don’t appreciate someones hands (the back of) up to my crotch either. worst was the literal pulling away of the waistband of my pants and sliding of the hands inside the waistband of my pants. I got an extra pat on my CGMSas well and had to lift up my shirt to display my pump catheter. I have flown on ELAL the Israel airlines and been subject to the best security in the business, with my pump on! It was nothing compared to the new security in the US. I dread traveling. Bad enough I have to carry all my supplies and often have the supplies questioned…but truly, do I look like an underwear bomber? Has anyone ever tried to fake an insulin pump as a bomb? Anybody ever used insulin or glucose gel to commit a crime? For that matter, have any of us who wear orthopedic shoes for neuropathy ever been shoe bombers?????

  40. Jason
    Jason November 27, 2010 at 9:48 pm | | Reply

    i just traveled via air from Albuquerque to vegas and i too wear an omnipod insulin pump. i got hassled beyond belief because the TSA is not trained in any way regarding medical devices. i heard that a few weeks ago a man who had bladder cancer wearing a catheter bag urinated all over himself because TSA was too agressive and popped his catheter. this new security is absurd, overly invassive and stupid. if the TSA spent one week training their employees on modern medical equipment this could be avoided but of course that would be too much time !

  41. ben
    ben November 29, 2010 at 2:58 pm | | Reply

    I was talking to a freind about why poeple would not try everything in their power to save their most important part of life, their health, but opt to think death is un avoidable, well we all have to die anyway but atleast not a premature death..,well i advize anyone who would love to extend their life to try this super king of herbs called ganoderma which was used only by the royals in ancient china for over 4000 years,it is known to correct or reverses disorders in the body like allergies,diabetes and many more. the good thing is that it has been blended with tea,coffee and chocolate or mocha for easy consumption. google it and see this miracle herb,but if you want to make not only good health but good money out of it, check out these webs, http://www.blacktogold.com and benrich.organogold.com. make life is sweet and long.

  42. WildMom
    WildMom November 29, 2010 at 7:54 pm | | Reply

    Amen to don’t ask don’t tell! Even when traveling with my four young children, I have been ushered into the special screening area by myself with my kids left alone and terrified in the security area. Now whenever we travel we discuss in advance how Mommy is probably going to get stopped, and they know what to do so that they don’t panic. But the fact that we even have to address this shows the mindlessness of TSA.

  43. Meet the New Influencers, Same as the Old Influencers (?) | Common Sense

    [...] TSA Screening and Pumps/Diabetes Mine [...]

  44. Vitamins Deficiency » What We’re Reading: Holiday Travel, Insulin Pumps, and TSA Regulations

    [...] her recent article about TSA regulations and insulin pumps, Amy Tenderich explores the current regulations and reaches out to the TSA and ADA to ask what may [...]

  45. PETEDCURTIS
    PETEDCURTIS December 8, 2010 at 9:23 am | | Reply

    Unfortunately the new rules mean at FLL means that when they see my Pump they pull me aside for a full body pat down every time I go through FLL They will not let me go through the Full Body Scan unit and make me wait for a TSA Agent and then do the invasive pat down. Of which I make it quite clear to them I do not like. This has happened on my last four trips. Fortunately coming back through Bahamas or foriegn airports they are much more friendlier and seem know what the pump is. BTW: My Paradigm pump does not set usually off the Metal detector. I’m guessing I’m just going to have to hide it under my clothes from now on. I can only end up with less hassle. I have complained to TSA about this and got only a standard reply after about one week. I was thinking that a good idea would be to get TSA to stamp a card or something so you can prove you have been hassled every time you go through a TSA checkpoint. Otherwise it seems it’s your word against theirs. Of course some re-course in a legal sense would be the only way to get them to back down.

  46. Chrissy
    Chrissy December 23, 2010 at 7:36 pm | | Reply

    I flew on December 21st. I walked through the metal detector without setting it off, but then someone saw that I had a pump. I made the mistake of asking when they would stop automatically giving a pat down for pumps. That meant that I was forced to speak to three other supervisors and got a more invasive patdown–more on the breasts, butt, and inside my waistband. Then, as an offhand note, one of the women said that they would have new regulations starting Jan 1, 2011. Has anyone else heard this or should I just disconnect my pump to try and go through security?

    By the way, I have had problems at SLC(pat down every single time), PHX(looked through all of my carry on baggage) and no trouble at LGA and Atlanta.

  47. Laura
    Laura April 3, 2011 at 1:00 pm | | Reply

    I just got back from a trip to Denver. I went through the new scanner with my omnipod and CGM. I immediately got pulled aside for a pat down. However, on my way home, I noticed that there was a “medical liquids and families” line. That way I could just walk through the metal detector like the old days. Nothing went off and I got on the plane without a hitch.
    I have been type 1 for 30 years. I have always traveled a lot. With my old minimed I just disconnected and went right through the metal detectors with my pump in my carry on. No issues. With my new omnipod, I always put my PDM in my carry on and again never had issues with the metal detector. Even when I had both a pod and a CGM on, no issues. The scanners are the issue. If you can avoid a scanner, you will be fine if you use common sense. There is no reason to disclose any part of your diabetes with the traditional metal detector. My advice is to find a smaller airport of find out if they have a family line that only uses a metal detector. If you can’t avoid the scanners (like in Detroit), just disclose your insulin pump and don’t even bother going through. It will be faster if you smile and tell them ahead.
    As for the people who don’t seem to think the pat down is an issue-it is not the physical aspect of getting the pat down. It is the fact that now diabetes affects yet another aspect of our lives when it should not. Some stranger putting her hands in my pants looking for explosives won’t stop terrorists. They seem to be smarter than the TSA.

  48. Consejos para una inspección de equipaje eficiente

    [...] Imagen: Diabetes Mine [...]

Leave a Reply