New data suggests that significant reductions in HbA1c have occurred over time among adults with Type 1 diabetes as their use of diabetes technology has increased, although there is still room for improvement.
The new study, involving 4,174 patients at the Barbara Davis Center for Diabetes Adult Clinic between 1 January 2014 and 31 December 2021 shows that – as technology use has increased – HbA1c levels have dropped in parallel.
Over the study period, diabetes technology use increased from 26.9% to 82.7% of the clinic population while, at the same time, the overall proportion of patients who achieved the HbA1c goal of less than 7% increased from 32.3% to 41.7%, while the mean HbA1c level dropped from 7.7% to 7.5%. However, among the technology nonusers, HbA1c rose from 7.85% in 2014 to 8.4% in 2021.
Moreover, progression from use of stand-alone continuous glucose monitors (CGMs) to automated insulin delivery systems (AIDs), which comprise insulin pumps and connected CGMs, have furthered that progress. Between 2017 and 2021, AID users had significantly lower HbA1c levels than non-technology users (7.4% vs 8.1% in 2017, and 7.3% vs 8.4% in 2021). CGM users also had significantly lower HbA1c levels than nonusers.
“It’s very rewarding to us. We can see clearly that the uptake is going up and the HbA1c is dropping,” lead author Viral N. Shah, MD, of the Barbara Davis Center, told Medscape Medical News.
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