Cell Phones Manage Diabetes
Reported September 2008
ATLANTA, Ga. (Ivanhoe Newswire) -- People with diabetes struggle to control their blood sugar and other complications, and sometimes need help managing their illness. Now, their cell phone can help keep them healthy.
We canít seem to live without them -- but Lori Falesí cell phone is a real lifesaver. It helps control her type II diabetes.
"Itís impacted my life in a very positive way," Fales told Ivanhoe.
Fales is part of a new clinical trial that turns almost any cell phone into an interactive diabetes monitoring device.
"It became clear to us that the cell phone would be a great tool to allow people to put in their blood glucose measures that they do on a daily basis," Charlene Quinn, R.N., Ph.D., assistant professor of epidemiology and preventive medicine at the University of Maryland School of Medicine, told Ivanhoe.
Using a cell phone with access to the Web site, patients enter blood sugar levels, food intake, physical activity levels and medications, and can read education updates. The program then gives real-time feedback, like praise for normal readings, and recommends how to improve high or low readings.
"It may say drink water and take a walk, and I need to listen to that more," Fales said.
Online access lets physicians and endocrinologists check-up on patients anytime. Earlier studies showed patients lowered blood sugar levels by 2 percent in three months.
"What we see using this cell phone technology, itís the ability to look at data that the patient can collect on their own and act upon it right away," Dr. Quinn said.
As simply as sending a text message, the technology is helping Fales get her disease under control.
"I feel like for the first time in 20 years, my diabetes is managed," Fales said.
It's a virtual coach keeping diabetes in check.
The study is ongoing in Maryland, and patients are required to stay in the study for one year.
The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, Inc., contributed to the information contained in the TV portion of this report.
Click here to Go Inside This Science or contact:
University of Maryland School of Medicine
Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, Inc. IEEE-USA
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