Princeton University researchers have developed a laser device that will enable diabetics to check their sugar level without pin pricks to draw blood.
More work remains to be done to reduce the size of the laser system to make it portable, according to a report published by Science Daily.
Princeton University’s Eugene Higgins Professor of Electrical Engineering and the project’s senior researcher Claire Gmachl said, “We are working hard to turn engineering solutions into useful tools for people to use in their daily lives.”
project’s senior researcher.
“With this work we hope to improve the lives of many diabetes sufferers who depend on frequent blood glucose monitoring.”
In an article published the journal Biomedical Optics Express, the researchers describe how they measured blood sugar by directing their specialized laser at a person’s palm.
The laser passes through the skin cells, without causing damage, and is partially absorbed by the sugar molecules in the patient’s body. The researchers use the amount of absorption to measure the level of blood sugar.
The paper’s lead author Sabbir Liakat, said the team was pleasantly surprised at the accuracy of the method. Glucose monitors are required to produce a blood-sugar reading within 20% of the patient’s actual level; even an early version of the system met that standard. The current version is 84% accurate, Liakat said.
“It works now but we are still trying to improve it,” he added.