For those interested in seeing a review of three new glucose meters on the market, I recommend reading this blog post from Adam Brown(diaTribe). He reviews the OneTouch VerioIQ, Telcare, and Freestyle InsuLinx meters. Each of these new meters has different feature sets that try to differentiate it by doing more than “just checking a glucose level.”
There are two ongoing clinical trials to be aware of.
One is at the Univ of Maryland and is using the forementioned Telcare meter. This study is a 6-month pilot study taking 100 patients with diabetes (both types 1 and 2) and randomizing them to either typical glucose meter or the Telcare meter. The outcome measures will be to see if connecting the patients via the Telcare meter will improve self-monitoring of blood glucose (SMBG) compliance, to see if A1c is affected, and to see if patient satisfaction is improved.
The other is being sponsored by a company called Diabetech with a link to the trial information here. This study is using an investigational device designed by Diabetech that attaches a self-contained wireless accessory to a glucose meter, and then transmits data to a centralized data management system. The system then analyzes the data and either sends educational materials to the patient or alerts or reports to the healthcare team. The primary outcome measures in this study are glucose control and patient satisfaction. The secondary outcome measures are HbA1c, self-test frequency of glucoses, and standard deviation of HbA1c and SMBG.
The new Telcare glucose meter has received a lot of attention in the last few months (including Walt Mossberg in the WSJ and in the blogosphere from DiabetesMine), as well it should. The most important advance that this meter brings is that patients no longer have to do a separate task to record their glucose value in a logbook or to download their meters. Currently, the only way for a provider to see a patient’s glucose values is for either a) the patient to copy them down onto paper from the meter, or b) the patient or physician to download the data off the meter. Both of these steps have proven to be barriers to efficient transmission of information. The Telcare system removes this barrier because there is no extra step required once the patient checks his or her glucose. It is all part of the same, usual workflow. Brilliant.
The drawback is that you have to use Telcare’s hardware. You can’t use your Contour meter or Freestyle meter, etc. This limitation will, in my view, slow adoption of this technology.
But, it is an exciting advance nonetheless.
One other noteworthy fact is that the Telcare system uses Qualcomm’s wireless technology. Qualcomm has established themselves as leaders in mobile health and this certainly won’t be the last innovation that uses their technology.