Diabetus equipment hacking

Flyn

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That's interesting. I actually have two Medtronic Minimeds, my old, regular one and a spare.

The problems with this idea are you are relying on other people who may/may not know what they are doing with the programming. You are literally gambling your life on other people's knowledge and skills. Too much insulin and it's a coma or death.

The article doesn't mention one item I think is necessary to having an artificial pancreas type insulin pump. A glucose reservoir. Insulin pumps have an insulin reservoir now that releases insulin according to the program. There is no glucose reservoir or any way to RAISE blood sugar other than eating something.

The artificial pancreases companies are working on now may use glucose reservoirs to raise blood sugar levels if they dip too low. For instance, if your blood sugar is already low and you go out jogging, you had better have some way of raising your blood sugar because it's going to crash.

I may research this group a bit more but it seems reckless to me to give control of an insulin pump to an algorithm.
 

Mr_Roboto

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I agree with that but can't blame someone for being desperate enough to do it. Overall I could actually see the algorithm to do this being fairly simple (a PID setup basically.)

IMO it shows the impediments of government in approvals that they can figure out how to do this as "hackers" but there's not a commercial product that does this and as you say is a product improved version.
 

Flyn

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The medical device companies have to be ultra cautious about not killing people once their product would be released. Plus the government has years of testing requirements for new products.

Hackers don't need to jump through the hoops. I believe the insulin pumps are fairly simple devices (that cost around $8,000) and they are very well built as far as longevity and tolerances. I don't know about current pumps but my Mini Med has lasted for 14 years so far. I can see that people who know computers could reprogram them for this purpose.

I need to do some more research on this. For instance, what would an insurance company do if they found out? Probably drop me instantly. Talk about modding cars and warranties. Modding medical devices is a whole different level.

That's not to say I haven't modded my blood glucose sensors. Used to be you could Program them to extend the life of the sensors to double the programmed length. Dexcom built a completely different sensor to replace these and you need to contact the company if you need them to reset them. They remotely monitor every one of their millions of 10 day sensors now. If there's a problem, you call and give them the serial number and they can look up what the sensor has been doing. Tough to beat. The sensor also gets destroyed physically when you are removing it from the transmitter so you can't even try to re-use it. Dexcom didn't like modders, obviously.
 

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