Better Control of Diabetes with CGM Systems

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Continuous glucose monitor (CGM) systems are advanced medical devices designed to provide additional information to patients and medical personnel regarding glucose levels. This can help caregivers and individuals with diabetes make more informed decisions regarding diet, exercise programs and daily activities with an eye toward better control of blood sugar levels throughout the day and night.

Constant monitoring can even protect against dangerous blood sugar fluctuations that can occur during sleeping hours by sounding an alarm when certain glucose levels are present in the blood.

CGM Benefits

  • Ease of use – Most glucose monitoring systems are designed to provide easy-to-read results and convenient downloadable historical data.
  • Added safety – Patients who must control their diabetes with insulin injections or via an insulin pump derive better protection against major blood sugar swings with CGM systems.
  • More accurate insulin dosage – Because health care providers have more complete access to the patient’s glucose readings with CGMs, they can tailor an insulin regimen to the specific needs of the individual.
  • Tracking – Patients who use CGM systems can track their blood sugar levels more closely in order to adjust daily activities and establish better control over their diabetes.

CGM Disadvantages

  • Cost – The glucose sensors and other disposable elements of CGM systems can constitute a major expense, especially for uninsured or underinsured patients.
  • Discomfort – Some patients experience significant discomfort with CGM systems because the sensors must be inserted under the skin to be effective.
  • Insurance companies – Some insurance companies still do not cover CGM systems and may not feel they are medically necessary.
  • Delay in results – Blood sugar readings from the interstitial fluids measured by CGM systems are usually delayed by at least five minutes, making them less useful for patients who experience rapid fluctuations.
  • Calibration requirements – CGM systems must be calibrated and tested against fingerstick tests at least once daily in order to ensure accurate results.

Recording Capability

  • Most CGM systems can store results for several weeks at a time, allowing patients to download the results to a computer and periodically forward those results to health care professionals for evaluation. Because CGM tests are conducted approximately every five minutes, these results can offer valuable insights for treating and controlling diabetes more effectively.

Insulin Pumps

CGM testing is especially useful for patients who require insulin pumps in order to control blood sugar levels. By obtaining more comprehensive information about basal levels throughout the day and overnight, patients and caregivers can ensure that the insulin pump is set to deliver the correct dosage of medication.

CGM systems can provide an added level of protection for patients with moderate to severe blood sugar fluctuations. Patients can enjoy an improved quality of life and better health by controlling their diabetes more effectively with CGM systems.

Jessica writes about a wide variety of topics.  She especially enjoys writing about diabetes. You can learn more about continuous glucose monitor at http://www.dexcom.com/

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  • Understanding CGMs and Their Role in Diabetes Treatment
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