Thousands of Brits to get life-saving devices to help monitor silent killer condition | The Sun

THOUSANDS of Brits are set to receive life-saving devices to help monitor diabetes.

Diabetes is a condition that affects millions of Brits, causing an imbalance in blood sugar levels, the NHS says.

It's often referred to as a 'silent killer' as most people don't recognise the signs of the illness – brushing it off as something else.

Around 4.9 million people in the UK have diabetes – with a further 13.6 million also at risk.

While most people are able to manage their condition, diabetes can be deadly if left untreated and if treated incorrectly.

Diabetics have to monitor their blood sugar levels as this will determine what they can eat and may also influence insulin intake.

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Now, around eight in ten people with the condition will have access to life-changing technology thanks to the rollout that was first announced in August.

Over 200,000 people are using the non-invasive glucose monitoring devices.

These allow people to check their glucose levels more easily and regularly – which is key for diabetics.

The new wearable arm gadget sends information automatically to a mobile app and allows diabetes patients to always keep track of their glucose levels without having to scan or take a finger prick test.

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The Real-Time Continuous Glucose Monitoring (RTCGM), uses a sensor no bigger than a bottle cap that attaches to the arm for up to 10 days and measures glucose levels from just under the skin.

What are the diabetes signs you need to look out for?

Common signs you may have diabetes include:

  • going to the toilet a lot, especially at night
  • being really thirsty
  • feeling more tired than usual
  • losing weight without trying to
  • genital itching or thrush
  • cuts and wounds that take longer to heal
  • blurred vision

The symptoms are caused by high levels of glucose remaining in the blood, where it cannot be used as energy.

These signs are common in children and adults alike.

But adults suffering with type 1 diabetes can find it harder to recognise their symptoms.

Diabetes UK's four Ts campaign – Toilet, Thirsty, Tired and Thinner – aims to raise awareness of the key signs.

Professor Partha Kar, National Specialty Advisor for Diabetes said the NHS has revolutionised diabetes care over the past five years.

"We’ve seen people living with type 1 diabetes go from having almost no practical way to manage their condition in real-time, to having the option of a lifechanging device that automatically alerts patients to potentially dangerous changes to their blood sugar levels.

“As a diabetes clinician, I’ve seen first-hand how liberating this device is for my patients, giving them the confidence to go about their days knowing they are safe and able to enjoy themselves.

“The majority of the NHS has already rolled out these new devices, but the NHS rollout will continue at pace to ensure both devices are available to every patient across the country by the end of next year.”

Patients will receive their starter pack once they have been prescribed the device by their GP.

This will include information on the product, usage, and a sensor and transmitter.

Health and Social Care Secretary Steve Barclay said: “Hundreds of thousands of patients now have access to this cutting-edge technology – helping them to better manage their diabetes whether they’re at home or on the move.

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“It’s another example of how we’re using technology to improve outcomes for patients, while reducing pressure on frontline services and this will help reduce hospitalisations and diabetic illnesses.

“The NHS has rolled out these devices at pace, and even more patients stand to benefit from this life-saving technology from the spring.”

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