Maintaining near-normal glycaemia in all patients with diabetes mellitus (DM) has become a standard and a well accepted recommendation. Unfortunately, most people with DM do not achieve this clinical goal because of marked glycaemic fluctuations and hypoglycaemia. Real-time continuous glucose monitoring (RT-CGM) has been introduced recently into clinical practice offering more knowledge about current glucose concentration and trend and enabling people with DM to intervene and prevent unwanted glucose excursions by acting upon real-time and predictive alarms. Several RT-CGM devices proved to be sufficiently accurate and feasible for routine use. Observational reports with The Guardian and Paradigm RT by Medtronic, the STS by DexCom, FreeStyle Navigator by Abbott and GlucoDay by Menarini established initial clinical benefit. Five randomised controlled trials (RCT) demonstrated significantly improved glucose variability or metabolic control, one of them showing a statistically significant and clinically meaningful decrease of HbA1c with a 3 months use of the Guardian RT (Medtronic, Northridge, CA). The great potential of RT-CGM devices to improve daily glucose control and quality of life in people with DM can only be developed further through RCTs, clarifying in more details the optimal clinical use and the most beneficial indications for this novel technique.
Keywords: Real-Time Continuous Glucose Monitoring, diabetes mellitus (DM), hypoglycaemia, randomised controlled trials (RCT), metabolic control
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