Diabetes is a chronic condition that occurs when the body cannot produce enough or effectively use insulin. Insulin is hormone produced by the pancreas that allows glucose from food to enter the body’s cells where it is converted into energy needed by muscles and tissues to function. As a result, a person with diabetes does not absorb glucose properly, and glucose stays circulating in the blood (hyperglycaemia) damaging tissues over time. This damage leads to life-threatening health complications.
There are 3 main types of diabetes: type 1, type 2, and gestational diabetes.
Poorly managed diabetes leads to serious complications and early death.
According to the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) estimates for 2015:
- Australia - an estimated 1079600 people between the ages of 20 and 79 have diabetes
- New Zealand - an estimated 285900 people between the ages of 20 and 79 have diabetes;
- 1 in 11 people have diabetes worldwide;
- The number of people with diabetes is increasing in every country;
- Half of people with diabetes are undiagnosed;
- 4.96 million people died due to diabetes.
Source: IDF Diabetes Atlas
This extraordinary figure amounts to nearly 8% of the world’s adult population and excludes those with Pre Diabetes (or IGT). According to the American Diabetes Association (ADA), in the United States alone over 24 million people are afflicted.
Diabetes can result in serious health complications, including eye, kidney and nerve disease, and can lead to premature death and there are steps that people with diabetes can take to lower the risk of such complications. Research studies around the world have shown that improved glycaemic control is a critical component of reducing complications associated with the disease.
In order to manage the disease, diabetics must measure their blood glucose levels. Many require numerous measurements on a daily basis.
Today, routine measurements of glucose levels are invasive and painful, as the measurement requires blood be drawn by the pricking of finger tips. The pain and inconvenience of drawing blood is a sub-optimal measurement regimen for many. A reliable, inexpensive, non-invasive device is more convenient and conducive to increased blood glucose level monitoring and can potentially help many diabetics better manage their disease.