Continuous Glucose Monitors (CGM) are an effective way to monitor your blood glucose numbers. While blood glucose meters measure blood glucose, CGMs measure interstitial glucose (the fluid between the cells). CGMs have three parts: a sensor, a transmitter and a receiver (which can also be your smartphone). They give a glucose reading every 5 minutes (or 288 readings a day.)
Depending on your CGM device, you may have to still do a fingerstick before making a treatment decision. CGMs also have alarms and alerts that you can customize to warn you when you are low or if you will soon be low. If the person wearing it is using a smartphone as a receiver, the data can be shared with “followers” who will also receive alarms when glucose levels are out of target.
Currently, there are several options for CGMs:
- Dexcom G6 (and its earlier model the Dexcom G5)
- Medtronic Guardian Connect
- Senseonics Eversense (the first implantable CGM)
There is also a device, the Abbott Freestyle Libre, that uses flash glucose monitoring. It is a cross between a meter and CGM.
Reviewed by Laura Jacobsen, MD on 2/12/20
This document is not intended to take the place of the care and attention of your personal physician or other professional medical services. Our aim is to promote active participation in your care and treatment by providing information and education. Questions about individual health concerns or specific treatment options should be discussed with your physician.