Continuous Glucose Monitoring

Continuous glucose monitoring is giving hope to thousands of diabetics today. A new experimental gadget is now available that checks a diabetics blood sugar and lets them know if it falls to a dangerous low. Researchers have been searching for the gadget for years. Monitoring devices are now coming on the market and by late summer will be available in the United States.

Although the monitors are not as accurate as blood tests but researchers are hoping that within a couple of years it will allow a diabetic to forgo sticking their finger to test for blood glucose levels. If the monitor signals that blood sugar levels are low, it is necessary to take a blood test for confirmation. The monitors are also slow to show rapid changes that occur, especially when you exercise. This monitor is working to make finger lances outdated for all diabetics.

Pain Free

Those who have used the monitors report little discomfort. A patch worn on the abdomen may hurt when it goes on because there is a tiny wire placed under the skin to measure the glucose in cell fluid. Once the patch is on, it is comfortable to wear and sends information to a receiver. The receiver is about the size of a cell phone. A patch can be worn for several days before changing.

Just imagine what this can do for the health of diabetics! The ability to control blood glucose levels gives us the ability to also control the chronic complications that diabetes can cause.

Research Funding Needed

The Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation is looking at the reports with interest. They believe that we are the verge of a new era in controlling or erasing diabetes. The Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation raise funds for research from bake sales, and diabetes marches all across the country. They are looking for funds to continue research on these new monitoring devices by showing how they will affect hospitalization because of kidney disease, heart problems, or other complications. The JDRF believe that car accidents can be reduced because of the accidents that are caused by impaired diabetics.

Insulin Pumps

Researchers are working toward pairing the new monitoring device to insulin pumps. These pumps have been on the market for years and could reduce the time needed for controlling diabetes to a minimum. One such product has already been approved on April 13 and is offered for sale now. The monitoring portion of the device will not be available until later this summer, so it isnt fully automatic yet, but it is promising news for those who are trying to control Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes.

This device, which is being made, is in reality an external, artificial pancreas and controls blood sugar levels for days. The diabetic would need to program in meals that are coming up and exercise. Scientists and researchers have been working on developing a glucose-monitoring device since the early 1960s. They now believe they are close to that goal.

Home Monitoring

Tracking software for glucose monitoring is available for at home PC use from several companies. One newer company is AgaMatrix. As noted on the blog Diabetes Mine,

    “Their Zero-Click Software, approved by the FDA last fall, supposedly enables effortless download of your glucose meter data “via a USB-style connection.” …Anyway, the software seems pretty neat. It can be operated in two modes: home user mode, which is the no-brainer option for “self-testers,” and a professional mode designed for more advanced users and multi-patient support by health care providers.”