SAN FRANCISCO -- (BUSINESS WIRE) -- WellDoc®, developers of BlueStar™, the first mobile prescription therapy for type 2 diabetes, today announced it will present the initial results of its hypoglycemia prediction model at the 2013 Diabetes Technology Society Meeting. The model has demonstrated the ability to predict hypoglycemia (a dangerously low blood sugar level) in patients with type 2 diabetes. By using seven days of spot blood glucose monitoring data, with about one blood glucose test per day, the WellDoc prediction model can alert for hypoglycemic events that are likely to occur within the next 24 hours. The methodology for the research will be presented during the scientific poster session at the Diabetes Technology Meeting in San Francisco on October 31.
Hypoglycemia is one of the most dangerous, costly, and difficult diabetes complications to manage. A recent study1 of 2.4 million type 2 diabetes patients found that hypoglycemia was especially common in patients treated with insulin or sulfonylureas with costs for a hypoglycemia related hospital event averaging $10,362, regardless of a patient’s drug regimen. A 2005 study2 further reported that patients who had experienced hypoglycemia had 77 percent more disability days per year.
“Avoiding hypoglycemia is a tough balancing act of keeping glucose levels low without going too low. Knowing when hypoglycemia is going to occur can help with this balancing act,” says Dr. Mansur Shomali, M.D., C.M., Medical Director at WellDoc and an endocrinologist at MedStar Union Memorial Hospital in Baltimore. “In its initial testing, WellDoc’s hypoglycemia model correctly predicted hypoglycemic events using this sparse data 91 percent of the time.”
WellDoc researchers tested the technology using tens of thousands of blood glucose data points from both the International Diabetes Center and WellDoc’s proprietary databases. The research demonstrated that by using about one test per day the hypoglycemia prediction model worked - any day of the week and across patient populations regardless of medication regimen or type of insurance: commercial, government, or employer sponsored. Currently, predicting hypoglycemia requires the use of continuous glucose monitoring, a technology rarely used by or reimbursed for people with type 2 diabetes. Instead, people with type 2 diabetes only test their blood glucose about once per day.
Further, Bharath Sudharsan, the lead investigator and data scientist at WellDoc explains, “the WellDoc algorithms correctly predicted hypoglycemic incidents 42 percent more often than expert human endocrinologists, with low rates of false positives and false negatives.”
“People respond best to information that is personal, timely, and actionable,” explains Robin Anthony-Kouyate, Ph.D., director of behavioral science at WellDoc. “Once a patient is armed with the knowledge that a hypo event is likely to occur in the next 24 hours they may become more receptive to learning about the consequence of the event and what they can do to avoid going hypo.”
Once further validated and FDA cleared, WellDoc intends to incorporate the hypo prediction algorithms into BlueStar™, the world’s first mobile prescription therapy for adults with type 2 diabetes. Once incorporated, BlueStar’s automated, real-time coaching could educate a patient about how to best manage and avoid hypoglycemia.
Sitting at the convergence of modern healthcare, big data, and connectivity, WellDoc can uniquely advance the previous limits of effective self-management interventions. “Our goal is to bring personalized medicine to life for millions of patients around the globe,” said Suzanne Clough M.D., chief medical officer and co-founder of WellDoc.
About WellDoc: Engaging Patients, Enhancing Outcomes™
WellDoc, a healthcare behavioral science and technology company that develops solutions aimed at engaging patients and enhancing health outcomes, is focused on simplifying the way chronic diseases are managed through a collaborative, life-changing approach that breaks down the barriers of engagement and adherence by providing patients and their healthcare providers with real-time, actionable information. WellDoc has developed an industry-leading, technology-based solution designed to help people with chronic diseases better manage their conditions. Forbes selected WellDoc as one of “America's Most Promising Companies” based on its potential for future growth.
About Diabetes Technology Society Meeting
The meeting provides a forum for the leading scientists in the field of diabetes research to learn about the latest technological advances for people with diabetes. Last year’s meeting in Bethesda, Maryland, brought together over 500 clinicians and scientists from 24 countries to focus on applying science and technology to fight diabetes.
The meeting’s goal is to assemble technology developers and users to facilitate creation of new and cost-effective tools—including an artificial pancreas—to help people with diabetes. The meeting will particularly emphasize original data. Scientists and clinicians will have plenty of opportunities to share ideas in both formal and informal settings, and gain insight into how to help decrease the physical and psychological burden of diabetes.
1 Curkendall SM, Zhang B, Oh KS, Williams SA, Pollack MF, Graham J. “Incidence and cost of hypoglycemia among patients with Type 2 diabetes in the United States: analysis of a health insurance database.” J Clin Outcomes Manage (2011) Oct;18. 10:455-462.
2 Rhoads GG, Orsini LS, Crown W, Wang S, Getahun D, Zhang Q. “Contribution of hypoglycemia to medical care expenditures and short-term disability in employees with diabetes.” J Occup Environ Med (2005) 47:447–452