20 Years and Still Going Strong!
Welcome to Diabetes Health’s 20th Annual Product Reference Guide—the one-of-a-kind guide among U.S. diabetes publications. Over the years, millions of people with diabetes (and without) have found our guide to be an accurate, reliable source of information that allows them to compare the features of hundreds of diabetes products in the marketplace.
Diabetes product capabilities have come a long way since we first published the product guide in 2003. Dramatic advances in computing power and miniaturization have moved us closer to the “holy grail.” of diabetes technology, the “artificial pancreas.”
A good example is Tandem’s t: slim X2 insulin pump, significantly smaller than other pumps on the market, boasting an insulin capacity of up to 300 units. Combined with the Dexcom G6 continuous glucose monitor, the pair comes the closest to achieving the long-sought arti cial pancreas.
Another insulin pump, Insulet Corporation’s Omnipod 5 also integrates continuous glucose monitoring (using the Dexcom G6) and insulin pumping in one unit. This is a signi cant advance over previous CGM/pump combinations requiring two parts.(See page 12.)
(Note: Dexcom’s G7 continuous glucose monitor has started reaching the U.S. market as of mid-February 2023.)
New Uses For Established Medication
Another unexpected development has been the increasing use of diabetes medications for o -label, non-diabetes medical treatments. For example, doctors now prescribe semaglutide* for nondiabetic patients. The reason is simple: Once semaglutide was established in the marketplace, observers noted that a happy side effect of the medication was weight loss. (See page 26.)
(*Semaglutide is the chemical name for a GLP-1 agonist (glucagon-like peptide1) type 2 diabetes drug that works by stimulating the pancreas to produce more insulin after meals and making food stay longer in the stomach. This makes the liver produce less glucose. The combination of these factors almost always lead to weight loss among users.
Semaglutide is sold under various brand names, such as Byetta, Ozempic, Trulicity, Victoza, Saxenda, and Adlyxin.)
Zealous government oversight has also led to o -the label diabetes drug use. Over the years, the FDA has insisted that pharmaceutical manufacturers prove that their diabetes medications do not threaten cardiovascular health.
When it turned out that these medications posed no risk to users’ hearts and, in some cases, seemed even to lower the risk of stroke or heart attack, it became possible for drug manufacturers to tout the heart healthy benefits of their products—a development not lost on prescription writing medical professionals.
Is It Really There
End-user comfort has also reached a nice level. Needles for injecting diabetes medications used thick, menacing-looking shafts, usually painful to use and regarded as one of the worst aspects of living with diabetes. (See pages 16 and 18).
Today, especially in smart pens, needles are so short and thin that users often cannot feel them pierce their skin; they must make sure the needles have penetrated. This development is one of those seemingly small details that make a big difference in injections, eliminating the fear of injecting medication.
All products listed here either have long companies make histories or with well-established reputations. We hope you’ll end this guide to be as helpful as we’ve always striven to make it.
To view the Fast Acting Glucose, Cardio Vascular, Neuropathy, Depression, and Sharps Disposal charts go to diabeteshealth.com/charts.
I hope you enjoy thumbing through the guide as much as we have had in putting it together for you, the person living with diabetes, the healthcare professionals that support you and the pharmacist that dispenses the medications and medical devices.