Subcutaneous glucose monitor

Case contributed by Dr Derek Smith


Radiograph as inpatient.


Humeral radiograph shows a rounded device with metallic components projecting over the lateral subcutaneous tissues.

This is a FreeStyle Libre Flash glucose monitoring sensor.

Case Discussion

The FreeStyle Libre, and other glucose monitoring devices, are becoming an increasing common way for patients to monitor and control their diabetes.

A thin cannula sits in the subcutaneous tissues and monitors interstital fluid glucose (with a short interval delay from serum glucose readings). For the Libre, there is a plastic casing smaller than a milk bottle lid which sits on the skin, with an adherent backing.

Currently licencing recommends positioning on the upper arms, although they have been placed in other parts of the body in some patients.

These devices at present last for 14 days. They are not MRI compatible. This is something to bear in mind when arranging MRI examinations as they can be difficult to remove if freshly applied!


Disclosure: I, Derek Smith, am a user of this system but I have no actual or potential financial conflict of interest in relation to this product. This case is not intended to be a personal endorsement or recommendation of this product.

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Case information

rID: 65732
Published: 21st Jan 2019
Last edited: 21st Jan 2019
Inclusion in quiz mode: Included

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