What does it mean to use my continuous glucose monitor reactively?

William Lee Dubois
Endocrinology Diabetes & Metabolism
Reactively is the easy way to live with your CGM monitor. You just wear it. You live in the moment, and your CGM keeps you safe.

You can be completely reactive, responding only to alarms; or you can go to the next level and try to be proactively reactive in your thinking, looking just a little bit ahead and trying to head off trouble one incident at a time.

For instance, once I ate a meal that was less than healthy. Afterwards, my Dexcom CGM warned me that my blood sugar was high and rising. Quickly. I entered my current blood sugar into my insulin pump, but the pump’s opinion was that we had enough insulin in play to take care of the situation. But it was wrong.

What the pump didn’t know, that thanks to my CGM I did know, was that my blood sugar was going up like a rocket. The pump only knew my BGL was 248 mg/dL and that I had X units of insulin coursing through my blood stream. The pump had no view of the flow of the blood sugar reading. But the CGM removed that static 248 and placed it in context.

And that is the power of CGM—continuous gives context. And in this case the context of my blood sugar was bad and getting worse. Quickly. With that knowledge I knew what I had to do. I had to take more insulin. Now. Or end up in the Emergency Room.
Beyond Fingersticks: The art of control with continuous glucose monitoring

More About this Book

Beyond Fingersticks: The art of control with continuous glucose monitoring

Everything you ever wanted to know about CGM (but didn’t know to ask)!Continuous Glucose Monitoring (CGM), the revolutionary technology that’s poised to completely change diabetes care, gives you...

Continue Learning about Diabetes


Diabetes mellitus (MEL-ih-tus), often referred to as diabetes, is characterized by high blood glucose (sugar) levels that result from the body’s inability to produce enough insulin and/or effectively utilize the insulin. Diabetes ...

is a serious, life-long condition and the sixth leading cause of death in the United States. Diabetes is a disorder of metabolism (the body's way of digesting food and converting it into energy). There are three forms of diabetes. Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease that accounts for five- to 10-percent of all diagnosed cases of diabetes. Type 2 diabetes may account for 90- to 95-percent of all diagnosed cases. The third type of diabetes occurs in pregnancy and is referred to as gestational diabetes. Left untreated, gestational diabetes can cause health issues for pregnant women and their babies. People with diabetes can take preventive steps to control this disease and decrease the risk of further complications.

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.