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Abbott’s FreeStyle Libre® System & GLP-1 Meds Show Synergistic Impact in Type 2 Diabetes

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ABBOTT PARK, Ill., March, 2024 /PRNewswire/ — Abbott (NYSE: ABT) today announced new data from two real-world studies1, 2 showing people with Type 2 diabetes using GLP-1 medicines and FreeStyle Libre technology together had greater improvement in their HbA1c when compared to those treated with GLP-1 medicines only. HbA1c is a measurement of a person’s average blood glucose level over three months. These findings were presented at the 17th International Conference on Advanced Technologies & Treatments for Diabetes (ATTD) held in Florence, Italy, on March 6, 2024.

GLP-1 medicines – also known as glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor agonist (GLP-1 RA) – are increasingly being prescribed for people with Type 2 diabetes as they provide glycemic benefit and support weight loss. When blood sugar levels start to rise after someone eats, these drugs stimulate the body to release more insulin, which helps to lower blood sugar levels. They also reduce appetite leading to less food intake and weight loss. Studies show that reaching and maintaining a healthy body weight can make diabetes more manageable.

The two real-world studies presented at ATTD found:

  • People with Type 2 diabetes and an HbA1C ≥8% while using GLP-1 medicines saw a significant improvement in their HbA1C (-1.5%), six months after adding FreeStyle Libre technology to their treatment. Results in this first study were irrespective of GLP-1 duration, GLP-1 type or insulin therapy type1
  • People had a greater reduction in HbA1c when using GLP-1 and FreeStyle Libre technology together (-2.4%), compared to using GLP-1 alone (-1.7%). The second study analyzed data from a cohort of people on GLP-1 only and those on GLP-1 & FreeStyle Libre systems therapies2

“The data analyses confirm that people using GLP-1 medicines to manage their diabetes can achieve even better results when using it together with FreeStyle Libre technology,” said Dr. Mahmood Kazemi, chief medical officer for Abbott’s diabetes care business. “This type of complementary relationship is not uncommon in diabetes care treatment. Similar to pairing with insulin therapy, FreeStyle Libre technology is a beneficial companion to GLP-1 therapy, providing the real-time data that people with diabetes can use to make positive behavior changes and navigate their GLP-1 usage safely.”

“GLP-1 medicines can be very effective in lowering HbA1C for people with Type 2 diabetes who require intensified treatment,” said Dr. Eden Miller, diabetologist and obesity medicine fellow at Diabetes and Obesity Care in Bend, Oregon. “While treating my patients, I’ve observed that when we’ve added a CGM, like the FreeStyle Libre technology, to their GLP-1 therapy, we see even better glycemic control. To maximize the benefits of GLP-1 medicines, it’s worth considering the combination of a CGM to support people who live with Type 2 diabetes.”

Uncontrolled Type 2 diabetes can lead to serious complications affecting the heart, blood vessels, eyes, kidneys and nervous system.4 Technology, such as the FreeStyle Libre systems, enables people to see real-time changes in glucose levels that can help them stick to the right therapy and lifestyle.

The FreeStyle Libre continuous glucose monitoring (CGM) systems include a sensor, which is applied to the back of the upper arm for up to 15 days, paired with a reader or compatible smartphone app that displays glucose readings. The Freestyle Libre technology is the most widely used CGM system worldwide helping more than 5.5 million people living across more than 60 countries easily monitor their glucose levels.

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