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Dr. David Klonoff, medical director of the diabetes research institute at Mills-Peninsula Health Services in San Mateo, worked with Google to see whether glucose is present in tears and whether the amount of glucose is proportional to the amount of glucose in blood. He’s still analyzing but optimistic about his findings and warns there are many potential pitfalls.
"Already this has some breakthrough technologies, but this is a moonshot, there are so many challenges," he said.
One is figuring out how to correlate glucose levels in tears as compared with blood. And what happens on windy days, while chopping onions or during very sad movies? As with any medical device, it would need to be tested and proved accurate, safe, and at least as good as other types of glucose sensors available now to win FDA approval.
Karen Rose Tank, who left her career as an economist to be a health and wellness coach after her Type 1 diabetes diagnosis 18 years ago, also is encouraged that new glucose monitoring methods may be on the horizon.
"It’s really exciting that some of the big tech companies are getting into this market," she said. "They bring so much ingenuity; they’re able to look outside the box."
Follow Martha Mendoza at https://twitter.com/mendozamartha
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