Medical Device Development Helps to Ease Daily Life
Diabetes care technology has made a lot of progress in recent years.
To manage the growing burden of a chronic condition like diabetes, patients and physicians in the 21st century require new tools.
Diabetes technology has long been offered as an answer to the need for disease management for a growing number of patients. Particularly for those with Type 1 diabetes, it is hoped that insulin pumps, continuous glucose monitors and other “smart” devices can help to better regulate blood glucose and reduce disease complications – all while simplifying management of a complicated disease, as Healio’s cover story reported most currently. The pace of new approvals may signal a new era in diabetes technology.
Improving the outcome of diabetes self-management by providing user-friendly technology is as important as developing better treatments for diabetes.
How to Help Manage Your Diabetes Impacted Life
There are now several gadgets designed to make living with diabetes a little easier and more hassle free.
“If you have diabetes, you must consistently monitor your diet, lifestyle, and glucose levels, and keeping track of everything can be both inconvenient and difficult. Matters can become even more complicated if you have other health conditions with which to contend. Fortunately, technology can help”, stated Nicola Davies, PhD. “Strides have been made to ensure technology keeps pace with assisting people in self-managing their diabetes. By incorporating a personalized approach, technology has become a useful tool; mobile and Internet-ready smartphones have been found to be the most effective for integrating diabetes care into day-to-day living”.
Technology now has evolved beyond telehealth. Smart technology exists as wearables, implants, and mobile applications to track glucose levels, share data, access relevant information, communicate with both health-care providers and others with diabetes, and, ultimately, guide you in making better decisions.
Wearable technology comprises gadgets that can be worn and are equipped with sensors and wireless connectivity to assist with monitoring blood sugar levels, personalizing treatment, connecting with health-care providers, and even delivering medication into the body. It’s a huge departure from the traditional finger pricking method of glucose monitoring.
Traditionally, people with diabetes use injections or pumps to get insulin, both of which can be uncomfortable and inconvenient. However, companies now are developing implants such as a bio-artificial pancreas and skin implants that automate drug delivery.
While many wearables and implanted technology still are in the development or approval phases, many smartphone applications already are available. Apps can educate, assist with decision-making, communicate with health-care providers, and promote adherence to lifestyle and medication regimens.
Some glucose meters now are smaller, lighter, and capable of giving more accurate readings. Some are so small they can be plugged into the headphone jack of a smartphone. Apps that accompany glucose meters include sensors that count the number of steps taken in a day, the number of calories consumed in a meal and the resulting glucose levels, and whether a dose of medication is recommended.”
Find more late-breaking diabetes news online.
Best Diabetes Apps 2019
Whether you have Type 1, Type 2, or gestational diabetes, understanding how food, physical activity, and your blood sugar levels interact is critical for controlling your condition. It can be overwhelming to think about carb counts, insulin doses, A1C, glucose, glycemic index, blood pressure, weight… the list goes on! But phone apps can simplify tracking and learning. Use them to consolidate your health information into one spot and learn more about your condition so you can make informed choices to manage your health.
For novices and longtime pros, here are Healthline’s best diabetes apps for 2019.
An Artificial Pancreas is Within Reach
There is no replacement for a fully functioning pancreas yet. But connected insulin pumps and continuous glucose monitors are getting close. Some monitors nowadays stick to your skin, wirelessly transmitting information to your insulin pump. The pump adjusts insulin levels, automatically, to maintain improved glucose balance.
The FDA approved the first artificial pancreas for diabetes treatment in 2016.
What is a Continuous Glucose Monitor?
“Glucose meters are a great tool, but sometimes you need to keep a closer eye on your blood sugar levels. That's where a device called a continuous glucose monitor (CGM) can help. This FDA-approved system tracks your blood sugar levels day and night. It collects readings automatically every 5 to 15 minutes.”, reports WebMD.
It can help detect trends and patterns that give you and your doctor a more complete picture of your diabetes. The data can help you find ways to better manage your condition.
Continuous glucose monitoring (CGM) devices use tiny sensors that are typically put under your skin on your belly or alternative body locations. They are quickly applied and usually without pain. Transmitters on the sensors send information to wireless, pager like monitors or to your phone.
What Insulin Pumps Choices Do We Have in 2019?
Insulin pumps on the market are designed to deliver reliable, consistent doses of insulin to help people with diabetes with their medication management. Doses are delivered through a catheter, which is inserted into the skin.
For some guidance and shared experience by a globetrotting user visit Cazzy Maggenis’ blog.
Since the Near Future Holds More Exciting Advances in Diabetes Care, How Can You Be a Part of Revolutionizing Diabetes Management?
Many people say participating in a clinical trial is a way to play a more active role in their own health care. Other people say they want to help researchers learn more about certain health problems. Whatever the motivation, when you choose to participate in a clinical trial, you become a partner in scientific discovery. And, your contribution can help future generations lead healthier lives. Major medical breakthroughs could not happen without the generosity of clinical trial participants—young and old, says National Institute on Aging.
AMCR Institute, a premier clinical research center for diabetes, explained the benefits of volunteering for clinical trials. Benefits include:
· A full physical exam at no cost
· Free laboratory work-ups
· No health insurance needed
· Potentially free glucose testing supplies and medication provided
· The possibility of a stipend for time and travel expenses
· Improved health outcomes because of the attention to your overall health
· Improved A1C levels from increased attention to blood sugar levels
· Free education for you and your family and loved ones
By taking an active role in your health care, you both help yourself and further research for other people in your situation. Contact AMCR Institute for more information on clinical trials.