Implanted Glucose Sensor - No More Needle Sticks

The glucose sensor can be used for type 1 and type 2 diabetics. Through clinical trials, the sensor has worked on animals correctly monitoring their glucose levels for a year. Clinical studies on humans are set to begin within the next few months.

How the Sensor Works

First, the procedure to implant the senor would be done as an outpatient. The incision would be less than two inches and the most common risk as with any surgical procedure would be a post-operative infection.

The very basics of how the sensor works “Glucose and oxygen from the surrounding tissue diffuse to the sensor, where the enzyme glucose oxidase carries out a chemical reaction in which oxygen is consumed in proportion to how much glucose is present.”

What This Means for Diabetics

The information recorded by the sensor is sent to a box about the size of a cell phone. This is good news for parents who worry that their child’s glucose level may drop to low during the night. The recorded data will alert the parents and they can take the appropriate action. The same is true for adult diabetics whose glucose may drop drastically during the night.

It also means no more needle sticks to check your glucose level. On average, a diabetic has to do a needle stick three to five times a day to check their glucose level. That is as many as 35 needle sticks a week not including insulin injections.

The clinical studies on humans could take a few to several years. However, in the meantime this needle stick free possibility is great news especially for their poor fingertips.

A press release about the sensor provides the following credit. "Many of the people working at GlySens were trained at UC San Diego," said Gough. "This is a UC San Diego-industry collaboration."

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