What Technologies Are Used for Type 2 Diabetes?

Medically Reviewed on 5/24/2022
What technologies are used for type 2 diabetes?
Glucose management for patients with type-2 diabetes remains difficult, especially for those with severe insulin deficiencies.

Diabetes is a serious global health issue that affects an estimated 463 million adults and an increasing number of younger people globally. Approximately 90 percent of all diabetes cases are type 2, and the overall number is fast increasing, producing a considerable burden for people affected and increasing demand on healthcare resources. 

Over the past decade, many improvements in diabetes technology have focused on safer and more precise glucose testing and insulin delivery. Consequently, it should be recognized that these technologies will be especially beneficial to patients on insulin therapy. 

The range of innovative technologies includes motivating smartphone apps that can help non-insulin-requiring users, insulin pen modifications, and simpler insulin pumps that interact with continuous glucose monitoring to operate as an "artificial pancreas" for individuals on insulin treatment.

The most approachable innovations are listed below.

Glucose monitoring

Continuous glucose monitoring (CGM)

CGM includes implanting a tiny sensor in the subcutaneous tissue to monitor interstitial glucose. “Real-time” CGM monitors and reports glucose levels constantly, with some devices utilizing alarms to warn users of hypoglycemia or hyperglycemia.

CGM monitors interstitial glucose and hence differs from capillary blood glucose monitoring, which is still the gold standard for confirming high and low blood glucose levels and making treatment decisions. However, these give the doctor an overall idea of the way your sugar fluctuates concerning foods, medications, and your lifestyle.

Flash glucose monitoring (FGM)

Flash glucose monitoring (FGM), also known as "intermittently viewed CGM," uses a disc device worn on the arm that may be scanned with a reader to receive rapid interstitial glucose data. At the moment, these gadgets do not notify the user of low or high blood glucose levels.

Glucose responsive insulin delivery

Closed-loop systems (artificial pancreas)

The difficulty of adjusting insulin therapy to regulate glucose excursions in people with type-2 diabetes can be solved by using glucose-responsive insulin administration, often known as "closed-loop" or "artificial pancreas" devices. A CGM device transmits real-time glucose levels to a control algorithm, which computes and coordinates insulin administration through an insulin pump.

Hybrid closed-loop systems (artificial pancreas)

A controlled system known as the hybrid closed loop system will help manage blood glucose levels, especially postprandial glycemic fluctuations. Your CGM and insulin pump work together to provide insulin when your blood sugar is high and to cease insulin delivery when it is low.


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Insulin delivery

Insulin pumps

In comparison to injectable insulin, insulin pumps, or continuous subcutaneous insulin infusion provides for more regulated insulin administration, particularly for basal insulin. Pumps give basal plus bolus doses that may be set to alter as the user's needs change such as mealtimes or exercise.

Smart insulin pen

A smart insulin pen is an insulin administration device, which is a reusable injector pen that comes with an easy-to-use smartphone app that can assist people with diabetes and better regulates insulin administration. This intelligent system calculates and records dosages while also providing useful reminders, notifications, and reports. They might be an add-on to your current insulin pen or a reusable version that uses prefilled cartridges rather than vials or disposable pens.

The market for smart insulin pens is quickly expanding because they are often less expensive and easier to use and provide several benefits and improvements for those who rely on insulin to control their diabetes.

Inhalable insulin

A U.S. Food and Drug Administration–approved preparation, Afrezza, the only inhalable insulin, is available for prescription in the United States. However, the effect of this insulin is labile, which means it is not as effective as injected doses.

Ketone monitors

Other forms of technology, such as ketone monitors, which assess the level of ketones in the blood, can help you manage your diabetes.

Ketones are harmful compounds that can form in the body if there isn't enough insulin to enable adequate glucose into the cells. High ketone levels in the blood can cause diabetic ketoacidosis, a potentially fatal illness.

If you use insulin, you may benefit from ketone monitors.


There are now several applications and smart technologies available to assist you with weight management, exercise, and carb counting. These aren't usually only for people with diabetes, but you might find them handy for keeping track of what you eat and how much you exercise. There are also applications specifically created for people with diabetes that include all you need to know to manage your diabetes.

These apps may be downloaded into your phone.

Bottom line

Glucose management for patients with type-2 diabetes remains difficult, especially for those with severe insulin deficiencies that necessitate exogenous insulin therapy. There is a clinical need for safer and more user-friendly insulin administration techniques.

Diabetes technology advancements over the past decade have produced cost-effective and essential tools for properly initiating insulin treatment and managing the condition successfully.

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Medically Reviewed on 5/24/2022
Image Source: iStock Image

What’s New in Diabetes Technology? https://www.webmd.com/diabetes/features/next-generation-diabetes-technology

Better blood glucose meters and more: https://www.diabetes.org/tools-support/devices-technology

Diabetes Care: https://diabetesjournals.org/care/article/42/Supplement_1/S71/31093/7-Diabetes-Technology-Standards-of-Medical-Care-in