|2013 Consumer Guide|
These diabetes devices in development weren't available in the United States by Oct. 10, 2012, our cutoff date for being included in the 2013 Consumer Guide.
Phone as meter
The 2-ounce device plugs into an iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch, turning it into a blood glucose meter. Open the related (and free) app, insert a test strip into the GMate Smart, and automatically upload readings to the app. The device plugs into the headphone jack, so unlike the very similar iBGStar, the GMate Smart will work with the iPhone 5 without an adapter. The meter has been approved in Europe and is awaiting FDA approval.
Smaller, tube-free pumps
OmniPod, second generation
The next generation of this tubeless pump will have a 33 percent smaller pod, which is worn on the body, with the same 200-unit reservoir. It has been approved by the FDA.
The small tubeless insulin pump (it's 2.4 inches long, 1.5 inches wide, and 0.5 inches thick) lets you deliver insulin via a handheld remote or by pressing buttons on the pump. The device hasn't been submitted to the FDA for approval.
All-purpose pump handset
This system's remote-handset meter is glitzy—a thin color touch screen that also runs apps to help pumpers track blood glucose, food, and insulin. The rechargeable, buttonless pump with tubing is as bare-bones as they come. Users complete all pump functions from the handset. The device is approved in Europe but has not yet been submitted to the FDA.
On-the-skin glucose monitor
Echo Therapeutics' novel device uses a sensor above the skin to track glucose. The needle-free technology includes a gadget that removes dead skin cells and prepares the body for a skin-patch biosensor that relays results to a remote monitor. The company plans to file for European approval early in 2013. (Learn more: "Innovator: Patrick Mooney")
Take key features from the Animas insulin pump (color display, teensy basal rate increments), add a Dexcom CGM sensor, and—voilà!—you have the first combo pump from Animas. The company has not yet filed for FDA approval but says that it expects to in early 2013.
Offering true progress toward an artificial pancreas device, Medtronic's Paradigm Veo insulin pump–CGM temporarily stops insulin delivery when blood glucose levels fall too low. The system is already available in Europe and has been submitted to the FDA for approval. (For more of what Medtronic has in the pipeline, see "Innovator: John Mastrototaro")
Quick data uploading
Hoping to do away with manual blood glucose logging, Positive ID's device connects to a meter and automatically generates charts, graphs, and logbook entries viewable on a secure website. The device has been approved for use in the United States but is not yet available.
Relief from nerve pain
NeuroMetrix's pain-management device aims to calm pain due to diabetic neuropathy. A cuff outfitted with electrodes straps to the calf and delivers electric pulses that stimulate the nerves. According to the company, the Sensus reduces pain transmissions, lessening the ouch. The company announced in January 2013 that it had put the device on the market.
Longer insulin action
This ultra-long-acting insulin (insulin degludec) appears to have longer duration than current basal insulins and may reduce the risk of hypoglycemia while offering more freedom in dosing at different times each day. If approved by the FDA, the insulin is expected to launch in the U.S. sometime in 2013 (it's on the market in Japan).