Reproducibility of glucose measurements using the glucose sensor

Muriel Metzger*, Gil Leibowitz, Julio Wainstein, Benjamin Glaser, Itamar Raz

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


OBJECTIVE - Recent studies have confirmed that improved glycemic control decreases the risk of diabetic complications in type 1 and type 2 diabetic patients. The Minimed glucose sensor allows continuous 72-h glucose monitoring and represents a potentially important tool to improve diabetes management. Its use is currently limited to the health care team. Our aim was to evaluate the reproducibility of data provided by the device by comparing data provided by two sensors worn simultaneously by the same subject. RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS - A total of 11 subjects (6 type 1 and 3 type 2 diabetic patients and 2 healthy subjects) agreed to wear two sensors and perform at least four daily finger-stick glucose determinations during 72 h. The simultaneous glucose values provided by the sensors were compared. To determine the clinical implications of the glucose data, each day was divided into eight periods, and for each period the glucose range was rated as satisfactory, too high, or too low by a blinded clinician experienced in interpreting glucose sensor data in the clinical setting. The evaluation of glycemic levels based on the recordings of the two sensors were compared for each paired time interval. RESULTS - We discarded 18% of the sensor data for technical reasons. Examined as a group, the remaining 3,370 paired data points in all 11 patients were highly correlated (r = 0.84). However, when individual pairs were evaluated, large differences in the glucose values were apparent, with differences of >10% in 70% of the measurements and >50% in 7% of the measurements. Moreover, clinical evaluation of the glucose range provided simultaneously by two sensors was concordant for only 65% of the evaluation periods. CONCLUSION - In a real-life setting, the accuracy of data provided by the Minimed glucose sensor may be less than expected. To avoid therapeutic errors, sensor findings should be confirmed by independent means before clinical decisions are made.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1185-1191
Number of pages7
JournalDiabetes Care
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2002
Externally publishedYes


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