Wednesday, December 17, 2014

The Dexcom and the Artificial Pancreas

I keep reading on the Facebook Dexcom group page about the Dexcom sensors failing, or equipment needing replacement. Can you imagine what would happen if, a few years from now, you were wearing an Artificial Pancreas (AP) and a false reading from the Dexcom component in the AP occurred? You could get insulin from the AP when you were not actually high, or glucagon when you were not actually low. The AP is going to depend on the Dexcom numbers to know when to give you insulin or glucagon. All it would take is one bad number from the Dexcom to give you an overdose of insulin or glucagon, and send you to the ER with a very serious situation. This is a major concern of mine!!!
This discussion is drawing a lot of replies on my Facebook page, and I am told that I should not criticize a device that will not be available until a few years from now. I don't mean to imply that the AP will not be accurate, I am concerned for the people who do not have the good luck with the Dexcom that is currently used. They may not have much better luck with the G6 sensor that is now being developed, although it is supposed to be much better than the current sensor. The G6 is awaiting testing and FDA approval. It will be wonderful if the G6 sensor is so accurate that we can trust the AP when it materializes.
Actually, my concern is for my friends. Medicare will not cover a CGM, so I am sure they will not cover an AP either. I will probably never get to use the updated Dexcom or the AP.

1 comment:

  1. I am younger than you, Richard, but will be on Medicare in a couple of years. I similarly do not expect to ever use the artificial pancreas. However, I am optimistic that we will see the coverage of CGMS by Medicare. I hope that I am correct:-)