Glucose Variability Assessed by Low Blood Glucose Index Is Predictive of Hypoglycemic Events in Patients With Type 1 Diabetes Switched to Pump Therapy

  1. Bernard Corvilain, MD, PHD
  1. Department of Endocrinology, ULB-Erasme Hospital, Brussels, Belgium
  1. Corresponding author: Laurent Crenier, lcrenier{at}


OBJECTIVE To determine whether subgroups of type 1 diabetes patients with different glucose variability indices respond differently to continuous subcutaneous insulin infusion (CSII) in terms of reduced hypoglycemic events.

RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS We studied 50 adults with long-standing type 1 diabetes switched to CSII because of persistently high A1C or frequent hypoglycemia despite well-managed intensive basal-bolus therapy. We compared A1C, hypoglycemic events and glucose variability from self-monitoring of blood glucose profiles at baseline and after 6 months of CSII. Regression analysis was performed to identify predictors of response.

RESULTS In multivariate analysis, baseline low blood glucose index (LBGI) was the best independent predictor of hypoglycemia outcome on CSII (R2 = 0.195, P = 0.0013). An ROC curve analysis demonstrated a sensitivity of 70.8% (95% CI 48.9–87.4) and specificity of 73.1% (52.2–88.4) by using the LBGI cutoff of 3.34 as predictor of reduction of hypoglycemia on CSII. By grouping patients by LBGI tertiles, we found a 23.3% reduction in hypoglycemic events (<60 mg/dL [3.3 mmol/L]) in the third tertile (range 4.18–9.34) without change in A1C (P < 0.05). Conversely, the first tertile (range 0.62–2.05) demonstrated the greatest A1C reduction, −0.99% (P = 0.00001), but with increasing hypoglycemia.

CONCLUSIONS Baseline LBGI predicts the outcome of type 1 diabetic patients who switch to CSII in terms of hypoglycemia.

  • Received October 9, 2012.
  • Accepted January 7, 2013.

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