Friday, September 29, 2006

I bought a Dexcom!

After using the Medtronic Guardian RT at the Boston Marathon and during the Honu Ironman 70.3 (half-ironman) triathlon this year, I felt pretty sad to be without my own continuous glucose monitoring system (CGMS). Medtronic's CGMS won't be available in the U.S. until "sometime early near year," and who knows what that really means. Abbott has a system that is still under FDA review. Dexcom currently has a system available for purchase in the United States: the Dexcom STS. A careful review of all three would probably have been the most prudent choice, but I just don't want to wait any longer! The cost is expensive: to buy the device itself was $400 (sale price--it's normally $800), plus another $35 for each 3-day sensor. So, if I used the CGMS continually, it would cost me about $350/month! Yikes! Yikes again! I imagine that I will use it for a few days each week until the insurances realize how valuable this technology is, and decide to chip in a few bucks. Let's hope that's not too far off.

I spoke with a few people about the Dexcom, and have received some good reviews, as well as some mixed reviews. I think, at this point, all reviews of CGMS's are somewhat mixed, because they simply aren't yet as accurate as regular blood glucose meters. However, I believe that the glucose trend info that does seem to be pretty reliable with the CGMS, coupled with regular BG measurements, will provide a tremendous benefit in my ability to regulate my diabetes.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

An Inconvenient Truth

I saw the movie, An Inconvenient Truth, over the weekend. I had resisted seeing it because the thought of listening to Al Gore lecture was not that appealing to me. Although I did find the obvious self-promotional bits annoying, I am glad that I saw it, and feel motivated to make some changes and work for changes to fight against rising CO2 levels. The data presented in the film seems quite convincing. There are two points that I especially continue to reflect on: 1) for some reason, the media has presented the causes or the reality of global warming as a controversy, which left me wondering whether the mainstream scientific community was unanimous on the issue, and 2) that fighting global warming was somewhat hopeless. On the contrary to both points, there is basically no doubt within the mainstream scientific community that the planet is warming in an unprecedented fashion (at least within the last 50 million years--see National Geographic article), and that the warming and cooling of the planet in the past (and present) has been correlated with CO2 levels in the atmosphere. Secondly, there are things that can be done, especially in the United States, given that we produce 30% of the CO2 released into the atmosphere every year. Action needs to occur now, though.

I would recommend that everyone puts his or her political leanings aside, and goes to see the movie or read the book. Check out to get more information.