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Artificial pancreas can control diabetes in kids

Scientists in the United States (U.S.) have found that the artificial pancreas system is safe and effective at managing blood sugar levels in kids as young as age six with type 1 diabetes. According to a result of the new study published in the ‘New England Journal of Medicine,’ compared to the control group, those who used the artificial pancreas saw a seven per cent improvement in their daytime in-range blood glucose control and a 26 percentimprovementinnighttime control.

This new method of diabetes control replaces reliance on fingerstick or continuous glucose monitor (CGM) with delivery of insulin by injection or a patient- or caregivercontrolled pump. The system however, uses a CGM to track blood sugar levels and automatically delivers insulin when needed, using an insulin pump.

The ‘Newsmaxhealth’ reported that the nighttime control during the clinical trial, was especially important for people with type 1 diabetes because severe, unchecked hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) could result in seizure, coma or even death. Based on the current clinical trial data, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved the use of the Control-IQ system in children six and older. Type 1 diabetes is a chronic condition in which the immune system destroys cells in the pancreas that makes insulin and when this occurs, the pancreas produces little or no insulin.

Out of 3.7 million people living with diabetes, DiabetesUK estimates that 10 per cent have Type 1. That translates to about 400,000 people. The peak age at diagnosis for type 1 diabetes is most often around 14 years old. On the current study, the clinical trial at four paediatric diabetes centres in the U.S. enrolled 101 kids with type 1 diabetes, aged six to 13 years. One group used the artificial pancreas Control-IQ system, while a “control group” used a standardCGMandseparateinsulinpump. Kidswerefollowed for four months. Project scientist, Dr. Guillermo Arreaza-Rubín, who is the director of NIDDK’s Diabetes Technology Programme, said, “Fewer than one in five children with type 1 diabetes are able to successfully keep their blood glucose in a healthy range with current treatment, which may have serious consequences on their long-term health and quality of life.”

 

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