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Year : 2013  |  Volume : 1  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 88-93

The continuous glucose monitoring system (CGMS) in patients with beta-thalassemia major

1 Department of Internal Medicine (Endocrinology Division), University of Dammam, Saudi Arabia
2 Department of Pediatrics, University of Dammam, Saudi Arabia
3 Department of Biostatistics, University of Dammam, Saudi Arabia

Correspondence Address:
Waleed I Albaker
Department of Internal Medicine, King Fahad Hospital of the University, University of Dammam, P. O. Box 4166, Dammam 31442
Saudi Arabia
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DOI: 10.4103/1658-631X.123654

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Background: Blood transfusion-dependent beta Thalassemia Major (BTM) patients are at risk of hemosiderosis. Hemosiderosis of pancreas results in impaired glucose homeostasis tolerance and diabetes mellitus (DM). Since glycosylated hemoglobin has limited role in patients with hemoglobinopathies, this study was conducted as a first attempt worldwide to understand glucose homeostasis and evaluate efficacy of Continuous Glucose Monitoring (CGM) system as a diagnostic tool of abnormal glucose homeostasis in these patients. Materials and Methods: A case series study of six non-diabetic, transfusion-dependent beta-thalassemia patients aged 9-13-year-old. Clinical and laboratory data were collected on admission for their monthly transfusion. Patients were connected to CGM systems for one day. Findings: Using CGM and based on American Diabetes Association guidelines, three patients were found to have abnormal glucose levels of diabetic range. The other three showed impaired glucose tolerance. Among all patients, glycosylated hemoglobin (HbA1C) readings have an inverse relationship to CGM and calibration readings. Conclusion: CGM could be a promising tool for evaluating BTM patients. Larger studies are recommended.

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