2018 review of the year: new technologies for diabetes treatment

In 2018, several new technologies for diabetes treatment appeared on the Canadian market. The BETTER team, which is interested in the role of new technologies in the treatment of diabetes and the prevention of hypoglycemia, presents a summary of the technologies that are now available in Canada that have the potential to benefit people living with diabetes.

t:slim X2TM insulin pump by Tandem Diabetes Care

The t: slim X2 insulin pump is equipped with a touch screen technology and a rechargeable battery. This pump can be used with the Dexcom G5® Mobile continuous glucose monitoring system (see below) and it can be programmed to suspend insulin infusion automatically if sugar levels drop.

MiniMedTM 670G insulin pump system by Medtronic

The MiniMedTM 670G system is the first insulin pump approved in Canada that helps to stabilize sugar levels 24 hours a day by automatically adjusting basal insulin delivery every five minutes. The pump receives sugar levels values measured by the GuardianTM continuous glucose monitoring system.

GuardianTM Connect by Medtronic

The Guardian Connect continuous glucose monitoring system measure sugar levels every 5 minutes and send sugar values to an app installed on a mobile device. Alerts can be set up if glucose levels go above or below preset levels. It is also possible to share the system data with care partners who can receive high or low glucose alerts on any connected mobile device. The Guardian Connect smartphone app is currently only available with Apple (iOS) mobile devices.

Dexcom G5® Mobile

The Dexcom G5® Mobile continuous glucose monitoring system measures sugar levels every 5 minutes and sends sugar values to a mobile device. It is the only system approved for treatment decisions (e.g. hypoglycemia treatment) based on data reported by the Dexcom G5 Mobile system without the need to measure capillary sugar levels. Trending arrows allow seeing where sugar levels are going and how fast. Alerts can be programmed to be alerted when sugar levels are low or high. Dexcom G5 Mobile data can be shared in real time with up to five people with the Dexcom Follow App. Since 2018, around 85% of private insurers reimburse costs related to the Dexcom G5 mobile.  

FreeStyle Libre by Abbott

The Freestyle Libre is a flash glucose monitoring system. This system is composed of a sensor (measures sugar levels) and a reader (allows reading sensor data). The sensor has the size of a $2 coin and needs to be changed every 14 days. No calibration is needed. To know your sugar levels, simply scan the reader in front of the sensor. The FreeStyle Libre Link app, available for iPhone 7 or later version, can replace the reader and enable the sensor to be scanned with a smartphone. It is not possible to program alerts to be alerted when sugar levels are dropping or rising.

*For more information on these products please visit their respective websites.*

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