Scientists from the Cambridge University developed a device enabling regulation of the blood sugar level in cases when natural regulation is hindered, for example, in the case of diabetes. They tried a mechanism, called an artificial pancreas, on patients suffered from type 2 diabetes, and found that their lives improved significantly. This device can help people to restore their health even after diseases once considered incurable, such as diabetes.
Type 2 diabetes leads to different severe complications such kidney diseases. According to the study, diabetes is the most common cause of kidney failure (University of Cambridge, 1). Kidney failure leads to drastic increases and decreases in blood sugar levels, resulting in dizziness, falls, and even comas. Due to it, patients often require kidney dialysis or kidney transplants to be able to live. The usage of an artificial pancreas is the possible way to improve patient’s health and life.
The team of the scientists developed a mechanism that is able to regulate the blood sugar level of the patients. It was called an artificial pancreas and now can be used to improve lives of patients with both type 1 and type 2 diabetes. (University of Cambridge, 1). The device developed for patients with type 2 diabetes uses a closed-loop system, enabling it to function automatically. It is basically an insulin pump, regulating the level of insulin necessary for the organism. Insulin is a hormone regulating the blood sugar level: when its level increases, the blood sugar level decreases, and vice versa. An artificial pancreas releases insulin according to the current blood sugar level, thus, enabling to control it.
The experiment with an automatic artificial pancreas engaged more than 20 patients with diabetes and lasted more than a year. Scientists examined the period of time when the blood sugar level of the patients was in the range of the norm (University of Cambridge, 2).
Patients who use an artificial pancreas, have a normal blood sugar level more than half of the time, compared with those who did not use it and have a normal level only one-third of the time (University of Cambridge, 2). In addition, the effectiveness of the artificial pancreas was increasing with time: the algorithms using it are adapted to each patient, and its performance was rising. At the end of the experiment, patients were in the range of the norm more than 60% of the time (University of Cambridge, 2). It means that the artificial pancreas helps them to restore their health at least a half.
The results were even better when it came to the well-being of the patients using an artificial pancreas. All of the 26 patients said that they would recommend artificial pancreas to other people (University of Cambridge, 2). 92% of examined people reported that their overall health improved and they felt better. Almost 90% of them have their stress level reduced and become less anxious about their blood sugar level (University of Cambridge, 2). It means that their general quality of life increased, without pain and constraints imposed by the disease.
Such advances as an artificial pancreas are extremely useful products of modern science. They can help humanity to overcome fatal and incurable chronic diseases and to live better and healthier lives. An artificial pancreas with automatic regulation of insulin levels makes it possible for people with type 2 diabetes and kidney failure to live a full life anyway. Despite not curing diabetes completely, this device restores health of the patient.
University of Cambridge. “Artificial Pancreas Trialled for Outpatients with Type 2 Diabetes.” ScienceDaily. 2021. Web.