Thursday, May 17, 2012
Fantasy Diabetes Device
Today's DBlog Week topic is "Fantasy Diabetes Device." Sort of like fantasy football, but with more blood.
Anyway, this reminded me of the time I was asked by a research organization what sort of improvement I’d like in diabetes technology. So many things swirled through my mind – make stuff smaller – can I get a Pump Shuffle next to my iPod? Make stuff cheaper. Develop an artificial pancreas that works. Maybe a cure. Maybe insulin or a monitoring system covered by the government, a constant monitoring system that didn’t cost $50 for three days and was still inaccurate. But I’m a smartass. So in my mind, I just told them to make me a test strip that wants to LIVE, that isn’t designed to hurl itself directly into the bottom of my purse forever. No, it’s a real problem...a test strip without a death wish would be nice.
In reality, here is what I want: I want my device to take pics/scan my food and make a carb calculation to help me with my diabetes management. (If we’re talking wild fantasy, it will then remove at least half of the carbs and fat from the food while still leaving all the mass and flavour.) Then, I want it to test my blood glucose by scanning my finger, without a strip. If a strip must be involved, it is drawn back into the machine and is either incinerated or refurbished for reuse, so I never have to buy another one.
After it does this, my device will make the calculation of what insulin I need, and automatically deliver it. It goes without saying that the device is 100% accurate at all times and has no margin of error. The device will sense automatically when I am low if it is within ten feet of me, and make the necessary corrections. And it will occasionally flash affirmations about how well I’m doing. The device will be the size of a lipstick, and the pump will be either implantable or no bigger than a cartridge. It will be completely silent when I need it to be, such as when I am performing or watching theatre. My device is awesome.
You want to know the sad thing, though? Besides the carb-counting and removal abilities, my fantasy device still isn’t really as good as just having a functional pancreas.