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Studying insulin pump designs, power requirements

Posted: 25 May 2010     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:insulin pump design  pump power requirements  regulatory requirements 

Insulin pumps provide a precisely controlled rate of insulin delivery to diabetic patients who would normally need multiple daily injections to regulate blood glucose levels. Insulin pumps improve patient quality of life and reduce the incidence of long-term complications by providing tighter control of blood glucose levels. The firmware allows numerous modifications to the bolus dose and basal rate to enable patients to manage insulin levels in response to (and in anticipation of) events such as eating, sleeping and exercise.

The insulin is contained in a user-replaceable cartridge held inside the pump. This reservoir is effectively a specialised syringe with a piston that is slowly pressed by the pump. The cartridge output is connected to flexible tubing going to the patient's subcutaneous injection site, usually on the abdomen.

A related product for managing diabetes is a continuous blood glucose monitor. This device provides real-time glucose-level monitoring through a subcutaneous sensor. The sensor can be left in place for several days at a time, which reduces the need for the patient to test multiple individual blood samples. Future developments are expected to close the loop between these two systems by continuously monitoring the glucose level and, in response, automatically adjusting insulin dosage levels.

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