If you’re living with type 1 diabetes, controlling your blood sugar can be a constant challenge. That’s where closed-loop systems (often called artificial pancreas) come in handy.
A closed loop system diabetes treatment makes checking and adjusting your glucose levels much easier.
What are Closed-Loop Systems?
A closed-loop system is a technology that can automatically monitor glucose levels and administer insulin. Unlike the standard insulin pump, which delivers a predetermined amount of insulin based on the sensor reading, a closed-loop system adjusts to each individual’s needs.
For example, people on the hybrid closed loop system are typically paired with an artificial pancreas device connected to an insulin pump.
The Benefits of Closed-Loop Systems
The rate of side effects from closed-loop systems was very low but included skin irritation at the infusion site and occasional nausea. On the other hand, benefits include:
Reduced Risks of Hypoglycemia
Researchers found that the risk of hypoglycemia was lower for patients using closed-loop systems. There was also an increase in the percentage of time when blood sugar levels were at or near normal.
Reduced Risks of Hyperglycemia
It significantly reduced the incidence of severe hyperglycemia. However, it is unclear how much of this benefit is due to more frequent monitoring and how much is due to tighter control of blood glucose levels with the closed-loop system.
Improved Physical Activity
Type 1 diabetes patients can now perform physical activities for longer periods.
Fewer High Blood Sugar Episodes
Overall there was a dramatic reduction in the number of high blood sugar events and episodes of low blood sugar events.
Patients who used closed-loop systems were also found to have better metabolic control, reducing long-term health risks like heart disease and kidney failure.
Decreased Need For Regular Injections
It is important to note that those with type 1 diabetes who use these types of insulin pumps do not need to take daily injections, unlike those with type 2 diabetes.
Alternative Methods Suited to Patients
Tandem Diabetes insulin pump therapy for type 1 diabetes patients is available in three delivery methods: hybrid closed loop system, automated bolus only system, or manual bolus only system.
Auto Adjusted Insulin Delivery
There is no limit to how many carbohydrates someone can consume on this system because it will automatically adjust the amount of insulin needed after every meal accordingly.
Better Management of Carb Ratio Data
In this treatment, people can either set their carbohydrate ratios or input data into a computer algorithm that will calculate what they should eat based on their activity level and desired blood sugar level.
Many patients with type 1 diabetes who use closed-loop systems have discovered that they spend less time above or below their target blood sugar range than without it.
Patients also had lower levels of HbA1c measure of long-term blood sugar control), better quality sleep, lower body weight, less neuropathy pain, and higher levels of quality of life.
Closed-loop systems can significantly impact the lives of type 1 diabetes patients. These systems can help improve glucose control and reduce the risk of complications associated with the disease.