What if I told you that you could wear a device that would manage your blood sugar without you having to do anything – no carb entries, exercise adjustments, or manual corrections. This system produces an average glucose of 129 mg/dl, 87% of time in-range (70-180 mg/dl), less and 0.5% low, and a little less spiking after meals. Would you want it?
Oh, did I mention that the device is about the size of a sandwich, requires the use of two separate glucose sensors and two separate infusion sets (with tubing), and has a tendency to clog up? Would you still want it?
What we’re talking about is real. It is a bihormonal (insulin and glucagon) fully automated closed loop system. The developers, Inreda Diabetic of the Netherlands, reported the results of a 2-week trial comparing their system to standard pump therapy in a recent edition of Diabetes Care. What surprised the developers was that, despite the significant improvements in glucose control, study participants reported no overall differences in quality of life, psychological adaption, and treatment satisfaction.
Imagine that! Safe to say that half the participants felt that the improvements in glucose control (and reduced mental workload) more than compensated for the size/inconvenience of the system, while half did not. Which goes to show that diabetes management goes way beyond numbers for many people. Ultimately, in order to be successful, a device or management approach has to make life better for the user. Some people are into super-tight control. Some want life to be as easy as possible. Others don’t want constant reminders of their diabetes.
At Integrated Diabetes Services, the first thing we ask every new client is: What are YOUR goals. We don’t just assume that you want to lower your A1c (some actually want to raise it) or lose weight (some want to gain it). While many people come to us seeking better glucose control, the goals have surprised us at times. Here are a few examples:
“Just let me sleep through the night.”
“I want to think less about diabetes.”
“Let my kid be normal again.”
“It would be nice to be able to eat out.”
“Just want to work smarter, not harder.”
“I need to be a better hockey player.”
Just about everything we do with our clients is centered around their goals. What goals do you have in mind? If you could use some help reaching them, please reach out. There is nothing we can’t accomplish by working together.