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FreeStyle Libre reduces type 2 diabetes HbA1c levels

By Editor
1st July 2020
Technology, Type 2 diabetes

Newly published research has shown the FreeStyle Libre reduces HbA1c levels for people with type 2 diabetes on either long-acting insulin or non-insulin therapy.

Abbott, the company that makes the pioneering system, unveiled the results at the American Diabetes Association (ADA) 80th Scientific Sessions, which took place in June.

The study results are similar to outcomes typically seen when adding insulin therapy to treatment regimens, indicating people may be able to manage their glucose levels with sensor-based technology instead of adding insulin.

The real-world results are among the first studies that show use of the FreeStyle Libre system can deliver substantial reduction in HbA1c levels for those with type 2 diabetes, whether using insulin or not Dr Eden Miller, lead researcher

During the trial researchers assessed changes in HbA1c levels in people with type 2 diabetes who were either on long-acting insulin or non-insulin therapy. They analysed HbA1c levels from baseline to six months and baseline to 12 months after initiating use of the FreeStyle Libre system.

The results demonstrated overall lower HbA1c levels associated with the use of Abbott’s technology, specifically a 0.8% drop after six months (from 8.5% to 7.7%) and 0.6% drop after one year of FreeStyle Libre system use (from 8.5% to 7.9%) – clinically significant reductions of average glucose levels over time toward the ADA’s recommended A1c goal of 7% for adults with diabetes.

They also discovered the greatest HbA1c decreases occurred among the non-insulin users with type 2 diabetes, including a 0.9% reduction at six months and 0.7% drop after 12 months.

Among those people with type 2 diabetes on long-acting insulin, HbA1c reductions were 0.6% and 0.5% at six and 12 months, respectively.

Dr Eden Miller, a family practice physician at High Lakes Health Care and one of the lead investigators of the study, said: “The real-world results are among the first studies that show use of the FreeStyle Libre system can deliver substantial reduction in HbA1c levels for those with type 2 diabetes, whether using insulin or not.

“These data highlight how use of Abbott’s sensor-based glucose monitor could be game-changing for people beyond intensive insulin users, translating to broader use of the technology to benefit all those living with diabetes, no matter where they are in the spectrum of care.”

Another separate study involving the Free Style Libre also showed the device reduces acute diabetes events and all-cause hospitalisations among people with type 2 diabetes without bolus insulin.

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