Continuous Glucose Monitoring Systems (CGMS)

The rapid changes in blood glucose seen during and following training, and changes when asleep may be missed by intermittent blood glucose checks. We now are able to measure blood glucose nearly continuously using CGMS

These devices are now the state of the art to measure rapidly changing blood glucose values on an intermittent basis, and as such are extraordinarily helpful in judging glucose replacement and adjustment of insulin doses in relationship to sports. The information gathered during the measurement  period is the template to reconfigure feeding, dose and training strategies to improve performance.

How Do They Work?

CGMS meter from MinimedA sensor is put into the skin (usually on the anterior abdominal wall), where it stays for the day. It is connected by a wire to the meter. The glucose sensor is a microelectrode with a thin coating of glucose oxidase beneath several layers of biocompatible membrane. It continuously converts glucose from your interstitial fluid (liquid found between the cells of the body) into an electronic signal, the strength of which is proportional to the amount of glucose present. Blood glucose and interstitial fluid glucose levels are essentially equal when blood glucose is not changing rapidly. The monitor can measure approximately 300 times per. The monitor is carried on a belt, and stores continuous glucose data measured by the sensor at five-minute intervals. CGMS requires at least 4 calibrations using blood glucose readings from a traditional meter. While most CGMS do not display glucose values real-time at present, the data is downloaded into a computer and reports are printed, the Guardian RT does, and this is the meter we use at Wycombe.

CGMS is intended for occasional rather than everyday use and is a supplement to, and not a replacement for, standard blood glucose monitoring. As seems always to be the case, the numbers of centres which have access to the meters are very limited, but with user pressure, we will be able to build the case for better services

What CGMS output looks like: