'Artificial pancreas' could be a key medical breakthrough

In the News

'Artificial pancreas' could be a key medical breakthrough

October 19, 2018

What if people with type 1 diabetes could forego testing their blood sugar? 

"Millions of people with type 1 diabetes have to deal with syringes and insulin pumps every day, in a constant effort to keep their blood glucose levels steady. What if they didn’t have to think about the process at all?,"  writes Real Simple reporter Marisa Cohen in an article on pending breakthroughs in medicine


She spoke with UW Medicine endocrinologist and diabetes expert Irl Hirsch about the goal, not yet completely reached, of building an  artificial pancreas.

He explained how the recently approved hybrid closed-loop system works, with an under-the-skin  glucose monitoring system that conveys data to an implanted pump. The pump would then releases insulin as needed between meals and during sleep.  A patient would still need to take insulin with food, Hirsch said.