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Medical News & Perspectives
May 12, 2021

Start-ups Tout Continuous Glucose Monitoring for People Without Diabetes

JAMA. 2021;325(21):2140-2142. doi:10.1001/jama.2021.3789

To illustrate the wonders of human physiology, Stanford University endocrinologist Sun Kim, MD, MS, occasionally demonstrates continuous glucose monitors (CGMs) on young medical students without diabetes. The sensors show how their bodies release insulin and make other tweaks to keep blood glucose in a narrow range. Changes are so slight, she said in an interview, that students “get bored of the information.”

In fact, a 2019 study that aimed to create a benchmark for CGM-measured glucose levels in healthy individuals found they spent a median of 96% of the time between 70 mg/dL and 140 mg/dL. Seldom did readings stray lower than 54 mg/dL, the threshold for serious hypoglycemia, or higher than 180 mg/dL, a level associated with an increased risk of severe diabetes complications if sustained long-term.

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