Diabetes revolution continues to brew

Friday, May 31, 2002

REDWOOD CITY, Calif. - Cygnus has launched its long-awaited GlucoWatch Biographer, the only FDA approved device that measures glucose levels frequently and automatically, but providers of diabetes supplies need not fret. The revolution hasn't come yet.

Although the GlucoWatch measures glucose levels non-invasively, the device is not a replacement for finger-sticking. The Biographer measures glucose levels in interstitial fluid, not blood, and has been designed to identify trends and track patterns.

"A lot of people have been under the misconception that [the GlucoWatch] would replace finger-sticking. We've been getting five-10 calls a week from people asking when this will be available," said Daniel Trecroci, managing editor for the Diabetes Interview, a journal read by diabetics. "But it won't."

Most Biographer readings are similar to finger-stick test results, according to the company's marketing information, but the company cautions that those results should not be used as a substitute.

Trecroci said the real revolution is still a few years away. Meanwhile, diabetics are investing hope in artificial pancreases and a new drug cocktail to alleviate problems associated with finger-sticking. HME