Looking forward to the artifical pancreas . . .

Posted: November 16, 2010 in Diabetes
Tags: , , , , , ,

The Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF) is in partnership with Animas and are developing an artificial pancreas, which is fully automated system to dispense insulin to people with diabetes based on real-time changes in blood sugar levels.  It would be the most revolutionary advancements in treating type 1 diabetes.  

“If successful, the development of this first-generation system would begin the process of automating how people with diabetes manage their blood sugar,” said JDRF President and CEO Alan Lewis.

This system could drastically improve the quality of life for the three million people in the U.S. with type 1 diabetes.  It would free kids and adults from testing, calculating, and treating themselves throughout the day and night.

The continuous glucose monitor would be partially automated by using an insulin pump which would be wirelessly connected to the monitor.  The monitor would test glucose levels through a sensor.  The sensor would send the results of the test to the insulin pump, which would then administer insulin to the individual.  With a system such as this it would help prevent hypoglycemia and extreme hyperglycemia, both of which are very scary circumstances for an individual with diabetes.

JDRF is designating $8 million in funding for this project.  Their goal is to have the first generation version of this within four years. 

The possibility of eliminating the high or low blood sugar problems that send people with diabetes to the hospital could make living with diabetes less difficult.  By having better control of the glucose levels would lower the key risk for developing the associated long-term complications of diabetes, including eye disease, kidney disease, nerve disease, or cardiovascular disease.

My son was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes in August.  He has been hearing about the possibility of an artificial pancreas and has declared he wants one right away.  Even though he was just diagnosed with diabetes, he is frustrated with how this disease has completely changed his life and it has not been a positive change.  He hates it always being present and needing to be attended to at all times.  He hates testing his blood glucose.  He hates taking the shots of insulin.  Hopefully he will have the opportunity to have his wish come true. 

November is Diabetes Awareness Month.  Please help JDRF to develop the artificial pancreas.  Just by giving a donation, you are giving my son his life back.

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Comments
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