A Quick Rundown Of Three Top Continuous Glucose Monitors (CGM)
This post examines the Dexcom G6, Medtronic Guardian™ Connect, and Freestyle Libre 2 continuous glucose monitoring systems.
The introduction of continuous glucose monitoring (CGM) has been a game-changer for people living with diabetes both in terms of ease and convenience, and, more importantly, in terms of effectively managing their diabetes health and treatment plans. We’ll look at three great options all of which are available with a prescription from your diabetes physician. First, however, let’s discuss why your doctor might recommend switching to one of the continuous glucose monitors available from top diabetes providers.
What makes using a Continuous Glucose Monitor so great?
If you’re one of the more than 34 million Americans living with diabetes, or know a friend or family member who is diabetic, you know that pricking your finger a couple times each day to test your blood sugar level is anything but easy and enjoyable. Continuous glucose monitors eliminate all of that hassle. Using a small transmitter that’s inserted effortlessly under the skin, CGM’s are able to read your blood sugar levels continuously and transmit the results in real time to a remote receiver or even a compatible smartphone. No more pricks or pokes. Your CGM will tell you exactly what your blood sugar level is at any given moment, which makes monitoring your glucose a whole lot easier.
Advantages of CGMs for Diabetes Health
From a diabetes health perspective, continuous glucose monitoring provides you and your healthcare team with insights and immediacy standard glucose meters just can’t deliver. The readings taken by CGMs are far more accurate and reliable. You get a far clearer picture of your individual diabetes condition, which leads to more informed and more responsive diabetes treatment modifications. Standard glucose meter readings only provide blood sugar levels at a given moment. CGMs, on the other hand, provide continuous glucose monitoring, which takes into account those hours you spend sleeping; the moments immediately following mealtime; the hours after physical activity and other periods you might not test manually. By reviewing continuous blood sugar measurements, you and your doctor enjoy a far more detailed look at the different factors impacting your diabetes health, including the highs and lows of your glucose levels and how they impact your individual insulin needs. This leads to better lifestyle management and greater control over your diabetes without finger pricks or test strips.
For many with diabetes, continuous glucose monitoring is the right way to live. They make measuring and managing blood sugar levels far easier, plus studies indicate that the added depth of blood sugar data CGMs provide can help people lower their A1C levels. That’s a tremendous advantage for so many with diabetes who struggle to maintain healthy A1C scores.
Choosing a Continuous Glucose Monitoring System
Let’s assume your doctor thinks you might be one of the many people with diabetes who could benefit from continuous glucose monitoring. Now, you have to select a CGM system. To make it easier, your doctor probably has an opinion and it’s one you should definitely take to heart. However, it’s always good to know your options and there are three continuous glucose monitoring systems on the market that we at diabeticwarehouse.org think are worth highlighting. So here we go.
The Dexcom G6 Continuous Glucose Monitor
Dexcom is a leader that’s been at the forefront of continuous glucose monitoring for quite some time. Their latest offering is the Dexcom G6, an outstanding system that’s been carefully engineered for maximum ease and accuracy. It arrives factory calibrated, eliminating any need to manually check your glucose levels in order to “set up” the sensor. That’s already taken care of with this unit.
In terms of ease and comfort, the Dexcom G6 is also a winner. The system includes a hand-held, one-button applicator that quickly and near painlessly inserts a tiny sensor wire just beneath the skin on the abdomen. This is held in place by a small adhesive patch that also accommodates the Dexcom G6 transmitter.
Now comes the really cool part. You have a choice of where want to have your blood sugar data delivered. You can use the Dexcom G6 receiver unit or you can have your glucose levels transmitted to any compatible smartphone or mobile device. Either way, the system takes and transmits your levels at regular intervals throughout the day, as often as every five minutes! You’ll be able to see current readings at a glance, plus have instant access to historical levels to help manage your diabetes and insulin treatments. Additionally, the Dexcom G6 can be programmed to alert you when blood sugar levels become too high or too low - another big advantage.
The Dexcom G6 At A Glance
- Easy to administer sensor that’s low-profile so nobody knows you’re wearing it.
- Transmit data to a Dexcom 6 receiver or to your compatible smartphone, smartwatch, or mobile device
- Share data with up to 10 followers – family members, friends, care givers
- Dexcom G6 sensors are water-resistant and last for up to 10 days before needing to be replaced
- Integrates with Tandem X2 insulin pump for accurate insulin deliver
- FDA approved for ages 2 and up
- Covered by Medicare for patients who meet coverage criteria
Learn more about the Dexcom G6 and enjoy great savings on sensors, transmitters and receivers delivered directly to your door by visiting diabeticwarehouse.org.
Medtronic Guardian™ Connect Continuous Glucose Monitor
Medtronic gives you a choice of both a stand-alone glucose monitoring system or one that can be integrated with their MiniMed™ 770G Insulin Pump for worry-free and accurate insulin delivery.
Medtronic takes great pride in providing sensors that are small and comfortable, but that also stay in place for those with diabetes who maintain active lifestyles. In fact, the Medtronic MiniMed Guardian 3 Sensor, which powers the system, is the only CGM sensor approved by the FDA to be worn on either the abdomen or the back of the arm - whichever works best for you. These sensors also feature a unique diagnostic chip that measures the health of the sensor itself every five minutes, reducing variability and ensuring your measurements always remain accurate.
Like the Dexcom G6, the Medtronic Guardian Connect can alert you when your blood sugar level elevates or become too low. It also allows you to collaborate with your care team by sharing data through an exclusive Carelink™ software platform.
Medtronic Guardian™ Connect at a Glance
- The only CGM that is FDA approved to be placed on either abdomen or
- 30-day, no-questions asked return policy
Guardian 3 Sensors last up to seven days before needing to be replaced
• Alerts you 10-60 minutes before a high or low change in blood sugar
- 1-year replacement warranty
- Integrates with Apple and Android devices
- Currently indicated for use by people 14-75 years old
Learn more about the Medtronic and the Guardian™ 3 Sensors and enjoy great savings and delivery directly to your door by visiting Diabetic Warehouse.
FreeStyle Libre 2
FreeStyle Libre 2 is the next generation of the world’s most popular continuous glucose monitor - FreeStyle Libre. It works much like the other two CGMs we’ve examined; however, the Libre 2 is in the midst of getting FDA approval for its smartphone and mobile device app. Therefore, at this moment, you’ll have to use the compatible FreeStyle Libre 2 reader to see your blood sugar levels in real time.
One difference with the FreeStyle Libre 2 is that it does not use a transmitter to automatically send data to the receiver. Instead, the wearer simply waves the reader over the sensor for one second to get an immediate blood sugar level reading. The system records glucose levels every few minutes and saves the data for eight hours.
The FreeStyle Libre 2 also offers optional alarms that will notify you if you’re experiencing high or low blood sugar levels, as well as if there is a loss in connectivity between the sensor and reader for any reason. Sensors are applied to the back of the upper arm using a simple, single press applicator.
FreeStyle Libre 2 at a Glance
- Number one name in Continuous Glucose Monitoring
- Sensors last up to 14 days before needing to be replaced.
- Simply swipe reader over sensor to display immediate glucose levels
- Application to link with Android and Apple devices is currently under FDA review
- FDA approved for people with diabetes ages 4 and above
- Covered by Medicare and private insurances based on eligibility.
While we do not currently carry FreeStyle Libre 2 continuous glucose monitors at Diabetic Warehouse, we remain committed to providing our loyal customers, and anyone living with diabetes, important information on product options and the many new advancements we see in diabetes treatment.
So which CGM is the best choice?
In all good conscience, we really can’t answer this question. People with diabetes come in all shapes and sizes and live with all different types of treatment plans. Your individual lifestyle, insulin requirements, and A1C scores all impact your diabetes treatment plan. That’s why it’s important to consult your personal diabetes physician to decide if continuous glucose monitoring is right for you and which system aligns with your needs best. Besides, you will need a prescription from your doctor for any continuous glucose monitor on the market.
Hopefully, you now know a little more about your CGM choices and can begin a productive conversation with your doctor and diabetes care team. Whether it’s determined that a continuous glucose monitor is right for you or not, we invite you to visit www.diabeticwarehouse.org to explore great prices on all your diabetes care needs, including top CGM devices and sensors, insulin syringes and pen needles, as well as glucose meters and test strips.
Diabetic Warehouse is a trusted supplier of diabetic care products and accessories. For more information and to explore a complete range of products, including test strips, syringes and needles, glucose monitoring systems, and more, visit www.diabeticwarehouse.org.