More Great Ways to Avoid Needles

“Don’t call them pumps…” Further to my ongoing pursuit of alternative insulin delivery devices, I’ve learned of a few more highly intriguing models that were showcased via research posters and/or demos at last month’s annual ADA Conference.

Hpatch_3 * Valeritas’ h-Patch technology — a daily-use, disposable, waterproof device that’s as small as a chap stick tube and as easy to apply as a band-aid, according to the New Jersey-based company. It delivers both a fixed basal rate and manual meal boluses. Looks like the company is initially targeting Type 2 patients, to help make the transition to insulin easier. This device recently received 510(k) pre-market clearance from the FDA, a first step towards full FDA approval in which the manufacturer must demonstrate that a new type or category of medical device is “substantially equivalent to an existing, legally marketed device.”

* Danish company Danfoss Bionics is developing a similar system — a novel disposable Microfluidic Elastomer Patch Pump (MEPP), also aimed initially at Type 2 patients. Looks like this one’s still under study.

Ustrip_2 * Encapsulation Systems was showing its U-Strip transdermal insulin delivery patch system. That’s right, insulin being absorbed through your skin, directly into the bloodstream. “This is accomplished using ultrasound to transport the large molecule drugs, via a wearable, portable and programmable drug sonic applicator device,” says the Pennsylvania-based company. Observers note that the current system is quite bulky, but the company is of course working on a sleeker design. (Although the featured male model already helps make the name “U-Strip” a lot more interesting :)

While there’s lots of speculation about market demand and reimbursement issues for these new devices, need I remind you how cool it is for us PWDs that R&D is finally focusing on simplicity and quality of life concerns?

btw, I’ve just arrived in St. Louis for the annual American Association of Diabetes Educators (AADE) Conference. More news on all those doings to come.

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3 Responses

  1. Lauren
    Lauren August 1, 2007 at 6:41 pm | | Reply

    The conference brings to mind a question I’ve had for awhile: What exactly is the training required to become a diabetes educator? Some are nurses, some are dieticians, and others are just plain educators, right?

  2. Lauren
    Lauren August 1, 2007 at 7:30 pm | | Reply

    I actually answered most of my own questions by checking out the AADE website. (Thank God for the internets.) I am still pretty skeptical about the concept of “diabetes education.” I think it assumes that people with diabetes are idiots.

  3. AmyT
    AmyT August 2, 2007 at 6:32 am | | Reply

    Lauren,
    Actually, I’m glad you asked your original question. I happen to be working on that story for one of the leading D-magazines right now :)

    Which is why, btw, my blog coverage of the AADE Conf will be delayed a bit. I’m too darn busy all day here to write — and there’s VERY limited Internet access on-site, believe it or not…

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