Monday, October 27, 2014

Using Accu-Chek Smart Pix on Mac

The official system requirements for Accu-Chek Smart Pix software don't list OSX as supported, but you can use the reader and the software on Mac, quite easily.

The official system requirements indicate only Windows is supported.
This is how I do it:

First, I install the reader to the USB port on your Mac. I get a notification of an error, but I just ignore it.
The light on the device flashes and then starts blinking, indicating the device is already open for reading your meter or pump.

First a flashThen blinking

I then open the SMART_PIX device and launch the START.HTML file.

And there it is, Smart Pix software on my standard Safari browser.

The software is immediately ready to read a device, so I just put my meter in data transfer mode and set it in front of the receiver.

Once the transfer is complete, I get a notification...

... and can then access the information from my meter.

The same works with the pump. I click Read Device, set the pump to data transfer mode and put it in front of the receiver.

After the transfer is complete, I can see also the pump data in Smart Pix.

As I explained in the previous post, all the data from before the change from daylight saving time to standard time is unaccessible to Smart Pix, so here I only see a short period of data.

I can then examine the data with all the views and graphs Smart Pix has to offer, and also generate the report.

If I want, I can 'print' the report and save it as a PDF file to be sent to my healthcare team to look at.

So, works for me!

On my Windows machine I use a different version of Smart Pix that actually preserves all my data in an internal database, and therefore allows me to view data from an even longer period of time. But apart from that, the software works pretty well for me also on my Mac.

Please feel free to let me know in the comments if your Mac behaves differently.

Update: Please note the response from Accu-Chek. The software has not been certified to work with Mac, so you're using it on your own risk!

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Device data and Daylight Saving Time

Last year I lost a few months worth of data from my insulin pump, due to poor software.

When I downloaded the data to my computer on November 3rd, I could only see it back to October 27. When examining the raw data, the data available at the cutoff point was:

<BASAL Dt="2013-10-27" Tm="10:24" cbrf="0.75" profile="3" remark="time / date set (time shift back)" />

There was no data going back from that time. The previous time I had downloaded the data from my pump was at the end of August, so I ended up losing two months worth of data.

That data contained all the information of my temporary basal settings, and was really important for me. As I'm figuring out the correct basal dosing related to my exercise, I want to take a look back every now and then to see which rates have worked best during exercise and after it.

I really wanted to save the data from all the football matches from one season, where I had used different settings for different games and practices, to be able to analyze the results and also share it with my healthcare team and other people with diabetes. Now I could not do it anymore.

I explained my problem to the pump support team and they confirmed this is a flaw in their software. The pump actually preserves all the data, but the software used to read it gets confused when there are overlapping entries or gaps in the records. And this happens each time you change the time on the pump, whether due to daylight saving time or traveling to another time zone. They also explained that this is a well known problem and they are working on getting it fixed. As for now, there is no fix available.

So if you're using the Accu-Chek insulin pump and care about your data, make sure to download the data before changing the time on the device!