After a few days of sitting in back to back sessions on research updates, it was nice to have a day with a few gaps. I ended up spending most of the day wandering around the exhibition hall and speaking to many trade stands. Excitingly I also hung around to hear the launch of new resources from the National Diabetes Service Scheme including for women with type 1 or type 2 diabetes around pregnancy. To my knowledge, this is the first of its kind for women with type 2 diabetes. Check out their spanking new website at pregnancyanddiabetes.com.au.
Since I spent most of the day wandering around the stands, I thought I would write about recent and upcoming diabetes technology.
“Insulin administration without a needle”. Insujet uses a high speed jet through an optimised spring in the device to deliver insulin, similar to a needle. In essence, this is a device for those who dislike needles or are needle phobic. Looking at it, it is quite big and clunky and there are many steps to go through before delivering the insulin with a loud CLUNK. But I’m sure as you go through it and get used to it, it’ll be second nature. At the moment, you can only purchase it through the Insujet website at a steep cost of $275. There are also ongoing consumable costs. Cartridge adapters come at $4.50 for a box of 15 and each adapter needs to be replaced once the cartridge is used. The delivery nozzle is also $4.50 for a box of 15 and each nozzle needs to be changed every 2 weeks.
“Dario Diabetes Management Solution”. I’m pretty excited about the Dario meter, which has been around since the start of the year. It’s an all in one device that includes test strips, lancets and a meter that works through plugging it into the headphone jack of your phone. Obviously there’s an app to go with it that looks colourful and easy to use, read and interpret. One of the features I was impressed with was the automatic text alert to a family member or friend if your BG tested is in “alert” range, which you can set. The app also has a bolus advisor option users can work through with their educator. The meter is only available through their Dario website for $59.90. Strips and lancets can be bought through the NDSS website.
Roche has also launched a new meter that syncs to a smart phone app via bluetooth. The Accu-Chek connect app is similar to the Dario with the ability of a text alert if your BG is in the “alert” range as well as the bolus advisor function. I won’t talk too much about it here as I am told I have a sample meter awaiting my homecoming to trial. So you’ll hear more on this soon! Read more about it on their Accu-Chek Connect website.
Through the Medtronic team, the iPort is a great for those on multiple daily injections (MDI) considering a pump. It’s essentially a pump site that you inject your insulin into. Other similarities to a pump site the iPort has are the insertion method (looks exactly like Animas Insert II’s) and the “site” needs to be changed every three days. Although they are advertised as “coming soon” it’s only due to the limited stock prior to the official launch. You can purchase them the Medtronic online shop. Cost wise, it’s $89.95 for 10 sets. Ouch.
“Flash glucose monitoring is finally here (in a locked glass cabinet, TGA approval pending)!” No one could tell us about the Freestyle Libre as approval from the Therapeutic Goods Administration. But from the Abbott breakfast, I managed to get some insight into it. A sensor sits on your arm (at the moment it’s only validated for use on the arm) similar to a CGM sensor. You test your BG by swiping the meter over the sensor like you swipe a barcode at the supermarket. No calibration is needed. The sensor needs to be changed every 2 weeks and can store 8 hours worth of BG readings. All data is transferred as the meter is swiped over the sensor, with the meter storing 90 days worth readings. When is it coming to Australia? Well TGA approval has been put in so who knows. How much will it cost? In the UK, each sensor is about 25 pounds, which equate to 50 pounds a month or about AU$110 if that’s anything to go by. You can find out more about Freestyle Libre from the UK website.
If any of you have had any experiences in these products I would love to hear what you think of them!