Continuous glucose monitoring helps decrease A1c

July 22, 2021
A 15-center study of 175 patients with poorly controlled type 2 diabetes in JAMA found that continuous glucose monitoring, compared to blood glucose meter monitoring, or finger pricking, significantly decreased their hemoglobin A1c over eight months (-1.1% versus -0.16%, respectively).

Although the benefits of continuous glucose monitoring for patients with diabetes has been demonstrated before, the benefits have only been well studied in patients with type 1 diabetes or patients with type 2 treated with multiple daily insulin injections, referred to as prandial insulin.

Study Author Rodica Busui, MD, PhD, Vice Chair of Clinical Research in the Department of Internal Medicine at University of Michigan Health, says this work is one of the first to thoroughly understand the impact of having access to and using a continuous glucose monitor in adults with poorly controlled type 2 diabetes that are only treated with basal insulin, a long-acting insulin designed to be injected once or twice daily to provide an adequate level of insulin throughout the day and night.

She adds that approximately half of the study’s participants were of a racial or ethnic minority.

The randomized clinic trial began enrolling patients in mid-2018 to late-2019, with follow up in mid-2020. The participants received one or two daily injections of long-acting basal insulin, with or without non-insulin medications to help lower blood sugar levels.

Aside from testing the efficacy of continuous glucose monitoring paired with basal insulin in the study participants, Busui and her team sought to better understand how the impact of this diabetes treatment approach affected patients’ adherence to managing their disease as well as their overall life satisfaction.

The result: 175 study participants exhibited better adherence to managing their diabetes, and their life satisfaction was higher.

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