Having recently been looking into gadgets and tech currently available for diabetics, today I saw an announcement of a piece of technology that could revolutionise the industry and care for all type 1 diabetics.
Almost acting as an artificial pancreas, the device created by scientists at De Montfort University, in Leicester is about the size of a wristwatch. From researching this device it looks as though its been in existence for some time, possibly as far back as 2007 (as reported by MTB Europe back in 2011), however the device is now entering the stage of clinical trials, bringing it a step closer to reality.
This is a reservoir for insulin which would be surgically implanted in the patients abdomen. The device has a gel coating which at the presence of sugar in the blood stream liquefies allowing the insulin in the reservoir to be released when appropriate, and when the sugar dissipates the gel then reforms into a solid barrier to reduce the release of insulin into the body.
The main issue is then one of refilling the device inside the body, the idea with this particular solution is a piece of tubing attached to a capsule which sits just under the skin, and one a fortnight the patient can inject insulin into the reservoir via this delivery capsule under the skin.
Currently doing around 5 injections a day, sometimes more, this would be a massive step forward in reducing the impact on everyday life, but the potential for better control and hence better health prospects down the line is exciting, however I have seen news of miracle ‘cures’ for many years and I’m not naïve enough to believe this will be the standard any time soon.
Clinical trials are due to begin soon.