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Safe and Effective Closed Loop Insulin Delivery for Type 1’s Decreases Hypo’s

Aug 8, 2014

A new delivery system has been evaluated and found to be safe and effective for young adults to use at home without any supervision needed….

Researchers evaluated a closed loop insulin delivery system with 16 type 1 adolescent participants between the ages 12-18. Results showed that the closed loop system improved glucose control throughout the day and night with less frequency of hypoglycemia overnight. Insulin was delivered by closed loop system for 3 weeks and then sensor augmented therapy for the following 3 weeks. 

Between the two systems, the amount of time spent with glucose being in the target range of <70mg/dL were low in both groups, however nocturnal hypoglycemia was seen less frequently in the group with closed loop insulin delivery. 

Researchers believe the strength of the study came from the combination of using closed loop system in a routine fashion including all days of the week, weekdays, and weekends as well as holidays. According to Horvorka, one of the researchers of the study, this closed loop insulin system will become a treatment option within the near future.

Overall, the benefits of closed loop insulin delivery are improved control of glucose levels throughout the 24 hour period, and fewer episodes of hypoglycemia overnight. Supervision is not required for this system. Further studies may be needed to determine whether the closed loop system really can benefit the young adolescents without any supervision. The study only evaluated a small number of patients with type 1 diabetes and there is not yet enough evidence to accurately make any recommendations.

Practice Pearls:
  • Researchers found closed loop insulin delivery to be safe and effective for young adolescents between the ages 12-18.
  • Results from the data showed the closed loop system to have less episodes of nocturnal hypoglycemia compared to sensor augmented therapy. 
  • Overall, the closed loop system may be considered as a treatment option in the future.

Hovorka R, Elleri D, Thabit H, et al. Overnight Closed-Loop Insulin Delivery in Young People With Type 1 Diabetes: A Free Living, Randomized Clinical Trial. Diabetes Care. 2014;37:1204-1211