The future of flash glucose monitoring

07 November 2021

Written by Amber Penrose

The future of flash glucose monitoring.

As a Type 1 Diabetic of nearly 18 years, I have experienced first-hand the advancements of T1 Diagnosis. The right technology, medication and equipment can be life-changing. They can put people in control of their diabetes and revolutionize the way they deal with their diabetes every day.

Flash glucose monitoring has been a momentous development for me personally. It uses a small sensor worn just under the skin. It stores blood sugar levels which you can access by scanning the sensor whenever you want to. It gives people more information, more conveniently and can help people better manage their diabetes.

Advantages of using FGM

  • You can see what your levels are like at times when you don’t normally test, eg during the night
  • You can see trends: when your sugar levels are starting to rise or drop, so you can take action earlier. This has also made my appointments at the Diabetes clinic much easier.
  • You don’t need to do so many painful finger prick checks!

Disadvantages of using FGM

  • You can get overloaded with data, which can confuse or worry you. I have spoken with Diabetics who can become quite obsessive with having the “perfect” blood glucose at all times
  • You may find wearing the sensor irritating or unsightly. Insertion can also be very painful
  • You need to be motivated to use the data it gives you to get the best diabetes management

I have had a great experience with the The FreeStyle Libre from Abbott. It is an expensive piece of equipment, and this can pose problems in the UK with regards to eligibility for funding. This can be frustrating for those who don’t match the “criteria”, as you can expect to pay around £500 for a standalone system with monthly payments on top of that.

Of course the best part of using the Freestyle Libre is receiving information about your glucose levels without having to prick your finger. No test strips, lancets or blood needed! All you have to do is press the button of the reader device and scan the sensor. The result is a very informative graph with your recent glucose readings, your current glucose level and a trend arrow that indicates which way your glucose is going.

This ease of checking my glucose has completely transformed my way of living with diabetes. Whether I’m on the run, in the middle of a meeting, travelling, exercising or partying – with one swift move I can check my glucose. Fast, easy and pain-free. To me, that’s still incredible.