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Defeat Diabetes
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CGMS Monitor Gets Kids Involved In Diabetes Care

Posted: Friday, June 23, 2006

A serendipitous finding was that the children tend to become very involved in their own diabetes management when using a continuous blood glucose monitor.

Stanford University's DirecNet director Dr. Bruce Buckingham presented results of continuous monitoring using the Freestyle Navigator Continuous Monitoring System at the ADA’s 66th Scientific Sessions, in 30 children, ranging in age from 4 years to 17 years, with an average age of 11 years.

The continuous monitoring device has a sensor, which penetrates the skin a few millimeters, and is changed every five days. Children in the study wore the device at home for 13 weeks. They were contacted about once a week by a healthcare provider.
Buckingham explained that, "The device measures" sugar levels between cells.. "The sensor is placed in the upper buttocks, which is the only flat surface in young children. Older children can also use the upper arm or abdomen...It has an alarm that goes off to alert the patients that their blood sugars are going to be too high or too low within the next 20 minutes... (The device) has been generally well-accepted by the children."

Buckingham and his colleagues developed an algorithm for each child that tells him or her how much insulin is needed. The algorithm is based on the child's age and history of abnormal blood sugar levels.

Buckingham reported the initial 7-week results at the ADA meeting. Use of the device helped subjects reach their target blood sugar levels.

The children, who were already quite familiar with adjusting insulin, said that the algorithm indicated a dose different from what they thought they needed 59 percent of the time

"The device brings the behavioral aspects (of diabetes management) into play," Buckingham commented. "Children were able to see when to change what they're eating and to adjust insulin accordingly...Some of the kids got to be pretty good at it. The ones who watched the closest really got it."

Thirteen week data is still being compiled, Buckingham said, but the children continue to show improvement in self-management.

Source: Diabetes In Control: The findings were to be presented at the American Diabetes Association's 66th annual scientific sessions, in Washington, D.C.

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