Abbott (NYSE:ABT) today announced real-world data associating its FreeStyle Libre CGM with significant HbA1c reductions.
The continuous glucose monitor (CGM) played a part in significant reductions in HbA1c, the average glucose levels over a three-month period. It was also associated with a lower rate of hospitalization for people with type 2 diabetes on both multiple daily injection (MDI) and once-daily (basal) insulin therapy.
Abbott presented its findings from the study at the 59th Annual European Association for the Study of Diabetes (EASD) in Hamburg, Germany. The comparative study from the Swedish National Diabetes Register indicates CGM’s effectiveness in type 2 diabetes management. It collected data between June 30, 2017, and Aug. 22, 2022.
According to the study, 2,876 people on MDI therapy saw a 0.34% reduction in HbA1c when using FreeStyle Libre. It compared those subjects to people using traditional blood glucose monitoring (BGM). Additionally, 2,292 people on basal-only insulin saw a 0.32% reduction in HbA1c when using FreeStyle Libre. This occurred with or without other glucose-lowering drugs.
The study showed a significant 49% reduction in hospitalizations for severe hypoglycemia for those on MDI therapy compared to BGM.
“The results of this real-world study add to the weight of evidence demonstrating the benefits of the FreeStyle Libre system in reducing HbA1c, serious diabetes-related events and hospitalizations among people with Type 2 diabetes,” said Dr. David Nathanson, associate professor at the Karolinska University Hospital Huddinge, Karolinska Institute in Sweden. “It is particularly encouraging that the HbA1c reductions were consistent across those who were receiving multiple daily injections and those on basal-only insulin, demonstrating its benefit in a wide variety of diabetes patients.”
How significant is this data from Abbott?
Abbott said the results reinforce similar findings from its RELIEF study presented last year. That retrospective study demonstrated reduced hospitalization rates for FreeStyle Libre users.
The company said that, following the RELIEF results, FreeStyle Libre 2 became the first and only CGM with national reimbursement in France for once-daily insulin users. It previously only had coverage for people with type 1 and type 2 diabetes on intensive insulin therapy. That reimbursement expansion came after similar widened coverage in Japan and the U.S. Medicare system.
Further significant data could lead to more widened access to the Abbott CGM technology. It’s the latest positive development for Abbott’s platform. Last week, the company shared data demonstrating potential positive adoption for FreeStyle Libre in conjunction with the use of GLP-1 drugs.
“The compelling body of evidence demonstrates what we already know – that FreeStyle Libre technology is making a significant difference for people living with diabetes. It empowers people with actionable insights so they can make informed decisions about food, medicine and behaviors that affect glucose levels,” said Dr. Alexander Seibold, EMEA senior medical director for Abbott’s Diabetes Care Business. “Recent decisions from local health authorities to expand reimbursement of CGMs like FreeStyle Libre system to people with Type 2 diabetes on basal-only insulin therapy are an important step forward. We will continue to work with other countries to broaden access to sensing technology for the millions of people with diabetes that could benefit from it.”