FreeStyle Libre – A Different Kind of CGM
I just ordered my first CGM from Abbott. The new Freestyle Libre was brought to my attention by my endo and I was immediately intrigued. Since the CGMs I had heard about earlier were $1000+ just to get started, I wasn’t too interested. My A1Cs are usually really good (in the 6’s), so I didn’t think buying a dexcom, for example would benefit me a whole lot.
Recently, I have been noticing a few more lows than usual, probably due to summer activities and the heat. After my doctor explained how the Freestyle Libre worked and how low the pricing was, I decided I would give it a try.
In Canada, the initial cost is about $250. You get a transmitter and 2 senors, which last 14 days each. The biggest plus: if you have insurance, the company who sells the CGMs will use your insurance right away. This way, you aren’t stuck paying the $250, if you’re like me, you’ll only have to pay about 30$! Amazing! I’m already excited and I haven’t even started using it yet!
Pros and Cons
Unlike Dexcom, you have to scan the sensor in order to see your blood sugars. Therefore, you can’t set thresholds for highs and lows and there is no alarm to tell you if you are getting high or low. If you can feel your lows, this wont be a huge deal breaker for you. I normally feel my lows, but sometimes they can feel similar to highs, so all I have to do is scan the sensor and check.
The main pro is that you wont have to prick your finger 5 times a day. I will still check my blood sugars with my glucometer before bed for reassurance, but the rest of the day I will use the transmitter to scan the sensor. Your fingers will thank you! Another pro (for parents who have children with diabetes) is that anyone can scan the sensor. If you think your child is low or high, just pick up the transmitter and scan the sensor. You won’t need to ask them to take a blood test.
The Freestyle Libre is waterproof up to 1 meter and for up to 30 minutes underwater. You can scan your FS Libre as many times as you want throughout the day, there is no limit. This is great for people who want better control with their diabetes.
Europe has had the FreeStyle Libre out for almost 2 years now. I’ve read some blog posts from diaTribe, who have been using it and love it. This post explains how it works, they even go into detail of how well the sensor sticks to your skin without the need of additional tape.
Another thing to mention is that you don’t need a prescription to purchase the FreeStyle Libre, but it does make the process move a lot quicker. It is also good to talk to your endocrinologist about this CGM to see if they think it will be a good fit for you.
The customer service at the Canadian distributor (bayshore) is amazing. I had a great experience. They answered all my questions and made the transaction super comfortable.
Also note: I have not actually tried the FS libre out yet. I should be getting mine tonight, so I will add a link to this post with my thoughts on it next week! Let me know what you guys think of the new CGM!
I am not a medical professional and should not be taken as such. I am only speaking from personal experience. Talk to your doctor about any health concerns you may have regarding your diabetes.
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