[Previous Months][Date Index][Thread Index][Join - Register][Login]
[Message Prev][Message Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next]
[IP] Glucose test without the finger-prick
June 21 - A watch-like device that allows diabetics to painlessly
check their blood sugar levels works as well as finger-prick blood
tests done at home, according to a new study.
Health experts say an easier, more convenient testing method would
motivate more diabetics to test themselves more often.
A STUDY OF 39 diabetics conducted at the University of
Colorado in Denver found GlucoWatch provided glucose values that were
nearly identical to those obtained using traditional monitors. The
findings were being presented Tuesday at an American Diabetes
Association meeting in San Diego.
GlucoWatch, the first largely noninvasive glucose monitor that
is awaiting federal approval, automatically checks users' blood
glucose every 20 minutes and sounds an alert if the reading is too
high or too low. If approved, the device could be on the market in the
"It looks very promising," said Richard Kahn, the association's
chief scientific and medical officer. "This will have value for a lot
of people, and set in motion a whole new generation of testing
GlucoWatch, made by Cygnus of Redwood City, Calif., sends tiny
electric currents into the skin, opening the pores and extracting a
minute amount of glucose fluid. A sensor underneath the watch absorbs
the fluid, then sends a reading, which appears digitally on the watch.
"This can be one of the most revolutionary changes in diabetes
management," said Neil Ackerman, Cygnus' senior vice president of
HOW IT WORKS
The device, powered by a small AAA battery, is expected to sell
for about $300, or three times as much as standard monitors. The
sensors which are changed everyday cost about $4, or twice as much as
test strips used in traditional monitors.
The GlucoWatch is intended to be worn continuously by the
patient. The device takes glucose readings every 20 minutes for 12
Once a day, a patient has to calibrate the device by performing
a traditional finger-stick procedure.
Patients may experience moderate tingling sensation when the
device is first put on and some skin irritation.
Cygnus, which lost $39.4 million on $11.6 million in sales in
1998, is looking for a marketing partner to help sell GlucoWatch in
the United States.
Last week, the Food and Drug Administration approved an
implantable device that measures glucose levels continually for three
days. MiniMed Inc.'s "continuous glucose monitoring system" is for
doctors to use occasionally to customize patients' diabetes treatment.
Insulin Pumpers website http://www.insulin-pumpers.org/
for mail subscription assistance, contact: HELP@insulin-pumpers.org