Comparison of Current Continuous Glucose Monitors (CGMs)

A continuous glucose monitor, also called CGMs, reveals short-term trends in the blood sugar as they happen. You can see the direction your blood sugar is taking in the last 1, 3, 6, 9, 12, or 24 hours, depending on what times the monitor offers. Various companies have already released continuous monitors, with more companies developing theirs every day. Significant differences in accuracy can be seen in one individual when two different continuous glucose monitors are worn at the same time.

Company Guardian REAL-Time
Continuous Glucose Monitoring System
Medtronic Guardian RT
Dexcom G4 Platinum

Dexcom Continuous Glucose Monitor

MiniMed® 530G with Enlite

Paradigm Continuous Glucose Meter

Availability FDA approved in June 2006 (monitor) and February 2007 (MiniLink Transmitter) and available for purchase STS system FDA approved in March 2006. Upgraded since and available for purchase FDA approved in September 2013
Weight 2.8 oz 2.4 oz 4 oz
Screen Size approx 1.8″ x 0.75″ 522/722 screen
Monitor Size 3″ x 2″ 4″ x 1.8″ x 0.5″ No Monitor, displays on the pump
Transmitter/
Sensor Size
1.64″ x 1.4″ x 0.37″ 2″ x 1.5″ / 0.75″ diameter
Sensor Life 3 days 7 days 6 days
Sensor Canula size 14 mm 13 mm 8.75 mm
Angle of Sensor Insertion 45º 45º 90º
Insertion Device Sens-serter, manual insertion possible DexCom Applicator Enlite Serter
Start-Up Initialization Time 2 hours 2 hours 2 hours
Calibration 2 hours after insertion, within the next 6 hours after first, then every 12 hours. Will alarm if calibration value not entered. every 12 hours with OneTouch Ultra 2 hours after insertion, again 6 hours after first, then every 12 hours. Will alarm if calibration value not entered.
User set alarms on low/high Yes, 8 different thresholds users can set for different times throughout day and night, different sounds for each alarm, loud backup alarm Yes, one high, two low (user set limit + 55mg/dl alarm) Yes, different sounds for each alarm, loud backup alarm
Predictive alarms for low/high Yes, can be set to warn 5-30 minutes before glucose limit has been reached 0 10, 20, 30 minutes
Alarms for rate of change Yes, can be set to warn at rates of change from 1.1 mg/dL per minute to 5 mg/dL per minute one each for high and low (either 2 or 3 mg/dl per minute)
Displays glucose numbers Every 5 minutes Every 5 minutes Every 5 minutes
Displays Directional Trends Yes, 3, 6, 12, and 24-hour graphs Yes, displays a 1, 3, 6, or 12-hour glucose graph Yes, 3, 6, 12, 24-hour graphs
Displays Rate of Change Yes Yes, arrows indicate a steady, slow/medium/fast rise or fall Yes
Review glucose data? Yes, last 24 hours Yes, last 24 hours Yes, last 24 hours
Capture events Yes, user can enter insulin, carbs, BGs, and exercise events Yes, user can enter insulin, carbs, BGs, exercise, and health events
Alarms, vibrates, or both Vibrate, escalating alarm, or both Alarm or Vibrate, vibrate for low first, then alarm Vibrate, escalating alarm, or both
Waterprooof Transmitter Yes, hot water not suggested Yes, up to 3 ft for 30 min Yes, hot water not suggested
Transmitter Batteries Rechargeable, 14 days or more use per change, 1 year expected life, additional transmitter and charger $649 life unknown, non-replaceable, additional transmitter $250 9 months, additional transmitter $500
Receiver Batteries 1 AAA rechargeable, every 5 days for 3 hours N/A
Range 6 feet 20 feet 6 feet
Snooze Alarm Yes, High snooze can be set from 5 min to 3 hrs, Low snooze between 5 minutes and 1 hour Yes Yes, both high and low alarms settings differ
BG Monitor Any Any Any
Computer Software Medtronic CareLink Personal Dexcom Studio Medtronic CareLink Online
Upgrade program Yes, call 1-800-Minimed for info Yes, $150 upgrade price Medtronic Pathway Program
Warranty 1 year on the monitor, 6 months on the transmitter 12 months for receiver and transmitter 1 year on the transmitter, 4 years on the pump
Money-back guarantee 30 day, not for sensors 30 day, not for sensors 30 day, not for sensors