Why are CGMs still so underused?


I was traveling in Edinburgh, Scotland last year and met a newly diagnosed T1, Hannah, who was working in a restaurant. We struck up a conversation and I showed her how the CGM worked with the pump. She had never seen one. I felt very fortunate that I was able to get a CGM soon after I started on insulin.


So glad to hear it is working so well for you! I must say, it is the best tool in my very large tool box of diabetes stuff. I would give my pump up before my CGM. I had always thought I did a pretty good job testing 8-12 times a day and taking 5 shots a day. But every advancement I have tried has made my life a little easier. And I love easy! I mean all I need to do is glance at my receiver and I feel confident in the number. Is it right on with my meter every time? No but have realized that even if I miss calculate something, it will and does catch up & I get an alarm if something was wrong. Same is going to hold with algorithms that are working an insulin pump.
So knowledge is power and I can finally see all those years of having “brittle” diabetes was really not having the data to see how things were effecting my blood sugars.


I just wanted those that don’t know (like me 3 months ago) that the CGM is a great tool. No bells and whistles on mine but a pretty good website to upload the data and figure things out.


Just tell the health plan (ill-health plan?) that the average cost of a trip to the ER in the US id $17,000 - Without admission! You’d think they’d want to save that kind of money. Another issue is that health coverage is a lot like the mortgage industry leading up to the bubble burst. Most people get their coverage through their employers - and employers issue RFP’s every year or so. So basically, the health plan you have now isn’t motivated to help you stay health and to avoid expensive complications cuz you are not likely to have their policy more than a couple years. Ergo, you will most likely be some other policy’s problem.

I liken it to the mortgage industry cuz back when my parents bought a house they had to prove they could afford the house payments. The holder of the loan kept it the entire 30 year term. THen mortgages became a commodity to be bought and sold. Eventually the only thing a person needed to qualify for a home loan was a pulse! THen the mess happened.


I do not know why CGMs are so underused. I was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes at age 60 after receiving two different chemotherapy (monoclonal antibodies) agentsover a 2 year span. I was told I should get a pump and I got Tandem t-slim 2 months later. Dexcom was ordered at the same time but my diabetic nurse recommended I use the pump for a couple of months before adding CGM. Even though I went into DKA at diagnosis, I never had HbA1c above 7. Mine stays 5.5-6.0. I recommend CGM for every type 1 who can get one. Jane


Well said! One problem that may never be solved are the victims that expect everything to go away on it’s own, in other words, the people that don’t care and aren’t willing to put in the effort. CGMs may not make everything magically go away, they may not be a cure, but they definitely make it much easier. I still occasionally have numbers outside my target range, but definitely not as many and not as far outside, and most importantly, I know it and am willing to admit it. If you don’t put in a little effort to take care of yourself (and when you have a CGM, that little can be even littler), you’ll feel like crap every day for the rest of your life. When you get a cut, you’d rather put a bandage on it than go to the doctor, right? When you have a CGM to help, that’s how much easier taking care of your Diabetes will be.


If you have the Libre then you can get a Blucon or MiaoMiao for 100 or 200 dollars approx and match them with the apps xdrip+ or Spike and have full CGM.

I am UK based and have a website bgonmywatch.com which I have set up to explain how to get all forms of CGM in the UK but if you read the article “All about CGM” most of it applies world wide.


The Libre is a Flash Glucose Monitoring system not full CGM. You can turn it into CGM by buying a Blucon or MiaoMiao transmitter to sit on top of it. I use the MM and now have alarms on my phone when I go hyper or hypo and my blood sugar on my smartwatch.

The Libre is a great device but I wish you could still calibrate it as it is often out by up to 20%. However I can put that right with xdrip app on my phone and ignore the reader.

See my reply above for more information.


See my posts above for turning Libre into full CGM for between 100 and 200 hundred dollars


Hey thanks I did not know that I will look into it I thought I had a CGM just without the bells and whistle’s

Jerry Jones


If you are in the States the Blucon will cost you less. Most people prefer the MiaoMiao and it is fully waterproof and re-chargeable. The Blucon has a waterproof version but some people have reported problems with leaks and you have to replace the battery every time you change the sensor. There have also been problems with the batteries draining rapidly.

My website gives you all the information you need to get started together with the necessary links.

If you have no trouble with hypos I would not say CGM is necessary but the ability to see my blood glucose on my watch is great when timing my injections.


No funds available (just hoping to keep being able to pay for Omnipods and Sensors!). Have to say, I am still amazed that the Libre matches my Roche strips on most occasions. I will be running out of roche soon, and trying some Bayer strips. No clue how those will compare.


The most accurate meter in various surveys is the Contour Next. This was Bayer but now supplied by Ascensia. Curiously the same strips in other Bayer/Ascensia meters are not quite as consistently accurate.

See article “Calibration needs accurate Blood Glucose Meters” on my website.


I have two Contour link meters in my old Medtronic stash…so I am going to try them out. Plus good prices on Amazon for strips…


the link meters are nearly impossible to read outside. the screens are terrible outside of interior illumination.


I really only take a meter to the grocery store or church, and that is if I dont take my Libre. Otherwise the meter sits on the shelf. I still would rather carry Omnipod PDM strips, but they cost more.


One of my coworkers just started up with Medtronic 670g. After many years with other Medtronic pumps and older CGM’s, she has given up on them. But while she is having many of the problems people are having (being thrown out auto, getting caught in calibration loop etc) she and her husband are ecstatic about having a sensor that works and gives good number! They are thrilled to finally have solid numbers that help them with their day to day life! CGM’s are great, especially when they work. We have come a long way, haven’t we?! I also when using MiniMed/Medtronic, hates their CGM sensors and stopped using them.


I have no desire to wear one. This coming from someone who was so afraid of lows I developed panic disorder and was paralyzed with fear. I learned to overcome to fear and my a1c has been 4.9-5.5 for 15 + years. Sometimes I am blown away by my ability to know my body. I will feel off and say I think I’m 174 and literally be 174.
The MAIN MAIN reason is scar tissue. Insulin absorbency is so important to me I don’t want anything else under my skin. ALSO which no one talks about it but if there is an effect of EMFs (electric magnetic field) on the body which would completely kill adrenals and body’s ability to heal. Same reason why you don’t sleep with your phone in your room… here we have something on us a all times talking to other devices… read “Grounding” it’s very enlightening.


I have never used a pump or a CGM and I am very educated on the subject of type 1 diabetes. Last I read neither Dr. Bernstein nor our Supreme Court Justice,who has had type 1 diabetes for close to as long as I have,60 yrs, uses the newer technology. They could certainly afford the devices.

I actually purchased a CGM about 6 yrs ago, but I have never used it. I am quite strict about what I eat and try to exercise the same amount every day, so that I know for the most part what my glucose levels are. I no longer can tell what my levels are without testing which is frustrating. I recently read that I have lost that ability because I keep my A1Cs too low, but that sounds a bit crazy to me.

I just switched to insulin pens and am finding I like those, so maybe I should look at a new CGM. I can’t make up my mind. I don’t like the idea of wearing something on my body. Also wouldn’t I still need to test because of the differences between what the meter says and what the CGM device reads?

If I didn’t always wake up when my glucose levels drop, I would definitely use a CGM, but waking up has never been a problem for me.

Right now I am on the fence about getting one.


I think this is a great reason to get a CGM. I’ve worn a Dexcom CGM for nine years now. While it definitely is an invasive technology, I find it to be minimally intrusive. I think it’s easier to wear and maintain than an insulin pump. I can hardly feel it, if it’s in a good spot.

While CGMs do take some care and feeding, I think the dependable feedback you get is well worth it. Most people who start a CGM are often surprised with some of the blood glucose traces they see. Some foods can fool you.

Whenever I’m forced to live without realtime CGM readings, it feels strange to me. Knowing the number and the trend is powerful info.

CGMs are not for everyone but I’m a big proponent. If you tried it and didn’t like it and chose to stop, then you’d have some useful knowledge. Good luck with your decision.