New Smartphone App Monitors Diabetic Levels

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It's rare we go anywhere without our smartphones these days.

Now there may be another reason to keep it within reach.

People with diabetes can check their blood sugar levels on their phones.

Lauren Farrell is a typical teen with her fingers attached to her phone.  But when she taps one app, Lauren's iPhone becomes more than a texting tool.   It helps her live with type one diabetes.

"I have to constantly monitor my blood sugar and correct for it," Lauren said.

Lauren's blood glucose meter -- or glucometer -- is attached to the bottom of her phone.

Her device called IBG Star is one of a handful of new meters connected to smartphones. It's more convenient for Lauren than having a separate meter, and more discreet too.

"It looks like part of the phone," she said.  "People don't question it."

Lauren's specialist at St. Luke's South Hosptial in Overland Park says that's especially important to teens who don't want to call attention to their disease.

It helps her know if she should adjust her insulin, which is delivered in another device, a little pump that she wears.

The glucometer that attaches to Lauren's phone costs less than $100.

Her doctor says the Food and Drug Administration has been slower than European governments in approving this new technology. A bill introduced recently in the U.S. House of Representatives would create a special Office of Mobile Health to provide recommendations on health app issues.

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