The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) just approved its first continuous blood sugar monitor and if you know anything about diabetes, it is actually a big deal.
No more needles
An estimated 422 million people were living with diabetes in 2014 - it’s estimated 1 in 9 people in Singapore have diabetes.
Part of diabetes management includes blood sugar monitoring, which means the unpleasant need to constantly draw blood by pricking of a finger. For people with needle phobia or distaste of needles/blood in general, it’s a necessary but wearisome daily routine.
The newly approved FreeStyle Libre Flash Glucose Monitoring System from Abbot uses instead a device that needs patients to insert a small sensor wire under the skin. A wand-like device then is waved over the sensor to measure and then provide a readout of a patient’s glucose levels.
It’s not a permanent insertion - after a 12-hour adjustment period, the device can be worn for up to 10 days. Still, 10 days without needing to prick yourself multiple times daily is, for many diabetes sufferers, a definite comfort.
No news when or if the technology will make its way here, but now that one device has been approved, more might soon be in the running. Even Apple is rumoured to be working on its own needle-less blood sugar monitor so expect the innovation to come sooner than later.