💫 Summary
This is an honest review of the FreeStyle Libre 2 continuous glucose monitor after 2 years of use, discussing its features, benefits, and drawbacks, as well as cost and accuracy.
✨ Highlights📊 Transcript
The FreeStyle Libre 2 is a continuous glucose monitor that requires scanning to see real-time glucose data.
The sensor is applied to the back of the upper arm.
The sensor reads glucose levels from interstitial fluid every minute.
Scanning the sensor with a reader or mobile phone allows you to see glucose data, daily graph, and trend arrow.
The sensor needs to be replaced every 14 days.
The FreeStyle Libre 2 sensor is lightweight and small, allowing for comfortable wear during various activities.
Data transfer during scanning is done via NFC, similar to Apple Pay or contactless credit cards.
The next generation, FreeStyle Libre 3, will have automated data transfer without scanning.
The sensors are factory calibrated, eliminating the need for fingerpricks in theory.
Customizable low and high alarms warn when blood sugar levels are too high or too low, or when there is a loss of connection.
The sensor is water resistant, allowing for activities such as exercising, showering, and swimming up to three feet deep for up to 30 minutes.
Applying the FreeStyle Libre 2 sensor is easy and painless, and it takes only 5 minutes for the first application.
Compression lows may occur if too much pressure is applied to the sensor, resulting in lower readings.
The sensor needs to be activated with a phone or reader and takes 60 minutes to warm up before providing glucose readings.
The sensor has a lifespan of 14 days, and most users have been able to use them for the full duration.
Customizable alarm levels are recommended to be set at a level where you will take action, and it's important to consult with a medical professional for personalized settings.
Don't set alarms too aggressively to avoid ignoring them.
You can choose from two alarm sounds and use the vibrate only mode.
One drawback is that you have to scan to see your blood glucose value and trend when you receive an alarm.
Another drawback is that there is no repeat function for alarms, which can be inconvenient when dealing with stubborn highs.
The price of FreeStyle Libre 2 depends on insurance coverage and country, with one sensor costing around 60 euros or 70 dollars out of pocket.
Insurance coverage and country determine the cost of FreeStyle Libre 2.
One sensor would cost around 60 euros or 70 dollars if paid out of pocket.
Free trial programs are available in some countries like the US and UK.
The reader is not necessary if you have a phone with NFC and Bluetooth capabilities.
00:00i used the freestyle library 2
00:01continuous glucose monitor as my daily
00:03driver for over 2 years and in this
00:05video i will be sharing my honest
00:07experience let's go guys this will be a
00:10longer video packed with information
00:12about freestyle library 2. i will
00:14explain how the system works and what it
00:16can do where i see its main benefits and
00:18drawbacks and how you can get your first
00:20freestyle library to sensor completely
00:23for free you can use timestamps down
00:25below to get to the topic that you are
00:27most interested in this video is not
00:29sponsored by abbott i'm just sharing my
00:31personal experience and trying to help
00:33you navigate your diabetes journey but
00:35if you want to sponsor this video then
00:37hit the like button become a channel
00:40member or sign up for my patreon this is
00:42the best way you can thank me so what
00:45exactly is freestyle braid 2 well it's
00:47the second generation of continuous
00:49glucose monitors aka cgms made by a
00:52well-known american company called
00:54abbott here is how the system works you
00:56apply a small sensor on the back of your
00:58upper arm the sensor has a tiny filament
01:00that is placed under your skin and the
01:02filament reads the glucose levels from
01:04interstitial fluid every minute
01:06freestyle library 2 is a flash
01:08monitoring system which means that you
01:10need to scan the sensor with your reader
01:12or your mobile phone to see your
01:14real-time glucose data on the screen of
01:16your device you'll see what your glucose
01:18is right now your daily graph which
01:20shows you how your glucose has been
01:22trending over the past few hours and a
01:24trend arrow which tells you where your
01:26glucose is headed and these arrows are
01:28super helpful because they give you a
01:30prediction of where your glucose will be
01:32in the nearest future having the
01:33information not only from the past but
01:36also being able to take a sneak peek in
01:38the future is one of the main benefits
01:41of the cgm system the freestyle library
01:432's lifetime or wear time is 14 days so
01:47after two weeks you need to remove it
01:49and apply a new sensor one thing to keep
01:51in mind is that the sensor doesn't send
01:53the glucose data to your receiving
01:55device automatically you always need to
01:57scan the sensor with your device to
01:59initiate the transfer of the data from
02:01the sensor to your device because your
02:03sensor will store the data only for
02:05eight hours your receiving device will
02:07store the data for up to 90 days so what
02:10i always did was i tried to scan
02:12frequently but at least every eight
02:14hours because if you scan after nine
02:16hours for example you will have a one
02:18hour gap in your graph and you basically
02:21lose the data for this one hour when i
02:23was using freestyle library 2 i usually
02:25scanned around 10 times a day because i
02:27wanted to know where my glucose is and
02:30where it's headed pretty much every time
02:32before i had any meal or i did any
02:34physical activity by the way you can set
02:36a reminder in your libre app that will
02:38remind you every eight hours that it's
02:40time to scan your sensor so the scanning
02:42is not such a big deal on the other hand
02:44let's be honest sometimes we get busy
02:46with our lives and we don't have time to
02:48scan or we don't want to scan because we
02:51don't want other people to ask questions
02:53by the way the data transfer during
02:54scanning is done via nfc which is the
02:57same technology that is used in apple
02:59pay or contactless credit cards abbott
03:01probably knew that the scanning was not
03:04ideal and that's why the next generation
03:06that is coming freestyle library 3 has
03:08automated data transfer without scanning
03:10but in most countries you will probably
03:12have to wait a year or two to get your
03:15hands on the freestyle breakthrough the
03:16freestyle library 2 sensors are factory
03:19calibrated so you should be able to say
03:21goodbye to fingerpricks in theory but in
03:23some situations it might still be a good
03:25idea to do a good old finger prick
03:27especially if our body is giving us
03:30signals that are contradicting the
03:33glucose levels that we are getting from
03:34the sensor another great feature of the
03:36system that is an improvement from the
03:38first generation of freestyle debris our
03:40customizable low and high alarms and
03:43this will warn us when our blood sugar
03:45is too high or too low or when we lose
03:47connection between the sensor and the
03:48receiving device and i will talk more
03:50about alarms in a minute let's talk
03:52about design first the freestyle library
03:542 sensor weighs only 5 grams i will put
03:56the exact dimensions on the screen right
03:59now but to give you an idea it's about a
04:01size and a shape of a two euro coin so
04:03it's quite small and very thin most of
04:05the time you will probably forget that
04:07you are wearing it because it is so
04:09light and so small i personally really
04:11enjoyed wearing freestyle braid too it
04:13didn't bother me at all the sensor is
04:15water resistant so you can do pretty
04:17much anything with it exercise take
04:19showers you can even swim up to three
04:21feet deep for up to 30 minutes and to be
04:23honest i never had any issues even if i
04:26stayed in the water for a bit longer if
04:28it is your first cgm it might take some
04:30time to get used to it but it shouldn't
04:32be a problem at least from my experience
04:34it doesn't hurt it's really comfortable
04:36and wearing it doesn't bother me at all
04:38there is a small rounded adhesive under
04:40the white disc that makes the sensor
04:42stick to your body for some people the
04:44adhesive sticks really well but some
04:46people have problems to keep the sensor
04:48on so i want to give you a few tips how
04:50to make the sensor stay on for a bit
04:52longer it's a quite common issue that
04:54people knock off their sensor by door
04:56frames or pull it out when they are
04:57getting dressed or fastening the seat
04:59belt in a car so just be mindful of your
05:02sensor in those situations and try to
05:04not put it on the outside of your arm
05:07where it is more exposed try to put it
05:09on the back side or even a little bit
05:11more on the inner side of your upper arm
05:14but it is more covered the second tip i
05:16have for you is try using an extra
05:18liquid adhesive and an extra over patch
05:20if your sensor keeps coming off the
05:22liquid adhesive i used is called skin
05:24tag and my favorite patches are called
05:26skin grip the guys at skin grip were so
05:29kind to sponsor this video and give you
05:31a 10 discount on their patches and the
05:33skin tag adhesive to get your discount
05:35just use the discount code or the link
05:38in the video description section now
05:39there is one more thing i noticed it
05:41happens from time to time that i lie on
05:43the sensor at night if you put too much
05:45pressure on it it can lead to so-called
05:48compression lows the system will start
05:50giving you way lower readings than what
05:52your blood sugar actually is the
05:54readings usually normalize a few minutes
05:56after you release the pressure but keep
05:58that in mind especially when you see
06:00those weird loss at night it might just
06:02be compression lows and maybe check with
06:04your glucometer before you eat out the
06:06whole fridge getting started and
06:08applying your first freestyle library 2
06:10sensor is really easy the first time
06:12application should not take you more
06:14than 5 minutes and the more you do it
06:16the easier and faster it gets in a few
06:18months you can literally do it in 30
06:20seconds it's that easy the exact steps
06:22you have to take are described in both
06:24the user manual which is in the package
06:26and the freestyle library 2 app which
06:28you can download on your phone if you
06:29are scared of a big needle i understand
06:32but the application really doesn't hurt
06:34more than a finger prick the needle
06:36looks big and you might feel it going in
06:38but it really doesn't hurt and it comes
06:40right out as you lift off the applicator
06:42so don't freak out the only thing that
06:44stays under your skin is this tiny
06:46filament which doesn't hurt at all after
06:48you've applied the sensor you need to
06:50activate it with your phone or your
06:52reader then the sensor takes 60 minutes
06:54to warm up and after that you will start
06:55receiving your glucose readings by the
06:57way i have a dedicated video where i
07:00show you step by step how to get started
07:03and apply your first freestyle library 2
07:05sensor i will link it here and in the
07:07show notes if you want to check it out
07:09as i said before the freestyle library 2
07:11sensor square time is 14 days after 2
07:14weeks your sensor expires and you need
07:16to remove the old sensor and apply a new
07:18one i have been able to use the vast
07:20majority of all my sensors for the whole
07:23time of their official lifetime i needed
07:25to use an overpatch in some cases to
07:27keep them on but other than that they
07:29lasted really well for me sometimes i
07:31hear anecdotes from other users who have
07:33issues with their sensors and have to
07:35replace them earlier whenever that
07:37happens to you you should reach out to
07:39the manufacturer and claim a free
07:41replacement abbott is usually pretty
07:43good about replacing any sensors that
07:45fail removing an old sensor can
07:47surprisingly be the most painful part of
07:50the whole experience because sometimes
07:52the sensor is stuck really well to your
07:54skin if you struggle with that try to
07:56spread some adhesive remover baby oil or
07:59coconut oil on the sensor adhesive and
08:02keep it there for 10 minutes take a warm
08:04shower and remove the sensor there you
08:06will see that it will come off really
08:07smoothly and again i have a dedicated
08:09video where i show you how to remove the
08:12freestyle brace sensor step by step with
08:14absolutely no pain next i want to talk
08:16about devices that you can use to
08:18receive the data from your sensor as i
08:20said before you can scan the sensor and
08:22display the data on your blue freestyle
08:25libre to sensor reader or on your phone
08:28you just need to install an app called
08:30library link in europe and freestyle
08:32library 2 in the us i personally prefer
08:34the phone because when i leave a house
08:36for a few hours i don't feel like carry
08:38the reader on me and i prefer to just
08:40take my phone which i take anyway it is
08:43a lot more convenient for me plus i can
08:45get low and high alarm notifications on
08:47my apple watch just keep in mind the
08:49sensor doesn't connect directly to your
08:51watch you still need to have your phone
08:52on you to be able to get the
08:54notifications on your watch and of
08:56course i have a dedicated video where i
08:58show you step by step how to set up the
09:01system on your phone and on your watch
09:03and how to get the readings on your
09:05phone and the alarms on the watch now
09:08the reader the reader is not an amazing
09:10product it's all plastic it doesn't have
09:12a good touch screen and you need to
09:14charge it quite often but i totally
09:16understand that some of you might have
09:17different reasons for using the reader
09:20as their primary scanning device one of
09:22the advantages of the reader is that it
09:24can serve as a glucometer and a cation
09:26meter you just need special freestyle
09:29braid test strips and you can check your
09:31blood sugars and your ketones on the
09:33reader you can't do that with your phone
09:35if you want to use both the reader and
09:37your phone then you need to activate the
09:39sensor with your reader first after the
09:41application and only after that scan the
09:43sensor with the phone and if you follow
09:44these steps you will be able to scan
09:46your sensor with both the reader and the
09:48phone but the alarms you will be getting
09:51only on the reader if you activate the
09:53sensor with your phone your reader will
09:56not work another advantage of using the
09:58phone is that as long as the phone is
10:00connected to the internet then your data
10:02can be accessed real time by someone who
10:05is following you for example parents or
10:07your caregivers which is really good and
10:10at the same time the data can be
10:12accessed by your doctor through a
10:14special app which i will talk about in a
10:16minute the only way to share the data
10:18with your reader with anyone and this is
10:20definitely not real time is to connect
10:22it to a computer the old school way
10:25using a usb cable and now i want to talk
10:27about the main feature of the freestyle
10:29library 2 system and the biggest
10:31improvements from the previous
10:32generation and this is of course the
10:34alarms the optional alarms so you can
10:36choose if you will use them or not and
10:39which of them you will use which of them
10:40you will not use and they are also
10:42highly customizable which is great the
10:45system can alarm you via bluetooth when
10:47your glucose gets too high or too low
10:49without you having to initiate the scan
10:51a little drawback of the system is that
10:53when it alarms you and tells you that
10:55you are high or low it doesn't tell you
10:58how high or how low it doesn't show you
11:00the glucose value and the graph to get
11:02the exact value and the graph you still
11:05need to scan the sensor you can choose
11:07your own levels when you want to be
11:09alerted my levels for example are 4.5
11:13millimeters for my lows and 8.5
11:16millimoles for my highs sometimes i even
11:18go with eight millimoles for my highs
11:20but you can set your low alarm anywhere
11:22between 3.3 and 5.6 millimole and your
11:26high alarm anywhere between 6.7 and 22.2
11:30millimole so it really is very
11:31customizable and my tip here would be
11:34set the alarm levels at the level where
11:37you are actually gonna do something
11:38about your high or low don't set the
11:40alarms too aggressively because if
11:42you're getting alarms too often they
11:45will be driving you crazy and you will
11:46start ignoring them so if you know that
11:48you will only be doing something about
11:50your high at 15 millimoles set that high
11:53alarms at 15 millimoles don't set it at
11:56eight your alarm levels might be
11:57completely different from mine so always
12:00consult your medical professional and
12:02agree with them what your alarm levels
12:04should be you can choose from two alarm
12:06sounds you can use the vibrate only mode
12:09and you can also choose if you want the
12:11alarms override a do not disturb mode on
12:14your phone two things i don't like about
12:16freestyle library two alarms one when
12:18you get the alarm you still have to scan
12:20to see your blood glucose value your
12:22graph and your trend and two you only
12:25get each alarm once there is no repeat
12:28function what do i mean by that well
12:29let's say my high alarm is set at 8.5
12:31millimole i climb to 8.5 i get the high
12:34alarm i scan the sensor i see my blood
12:37sugar is nine millimole let's say i
12:39decide to take some insulin to bring my
12:41blood sugar down and let's say i didn't
12:44take enough insulin and my blood sugar
12:46keeps rising to 10 12 and eventually 14
12:49millimoles the system will not alarm me
12:51again it will only alarm me when i
12:53return under 8.5 level and then go back
12:56up and break the 8.5 threshold again not
13:00very convenient especially when you're
13:02struggling with stubborn highs but
13:04regardless of my two complaints about
13:06the alarms i would still recommend
13:08everyone to use them because the alarms
13:10really helped me to increase my time in
13:12range the better the timing range is the
13:15better the quality of life with diabetes
13:17is next i want to talk about accuracy
13:20and as i said i was using freestyle
13:22libre 2 for over 2 years i have to say
13:24that libre 2 was always very accurate
13:26when i compared the sensor readings to
13:28my glucometer the most commonly used
13:30accuracy indicator is mean average
13:32derivative difference and freestyle
13:34library 2 has a mod of 9.3 which is a
13:37solid number about 99 of the time i was
13:40within plus minus 15 difference between
13:43my sensor and my glucometer readings
13:45which i think is very good and i'm
13:47taking into account
13:48that the sensor is taking the readings
13:50from the interstitial fluid not blood
13:52interstitial fluid readings are
13:54typically lagging 10 to 15 minutes so
13:56that is something you need to keep in
13:58mind and especially in the moments when
14:00your blood sugar is changing rapidly you
14:03might see that the sensor readings are
14:05lagging a little bit overall i feel that
14:07most of the time the free calibrate 2
14:08readings are a little bit lower than the
14:10readings from the glucometer and that is
14:12also what i've been hearing from other
14:14freestyle braid 2 users but all in all i
14:16didn't have any big issues with
14:18freestyle library 2's accuracy
14:20unfortunately the system has no
14:22calibration function in the native libre
14:24environment so if your readings are off
14:26there is no way to calibrate the sensor
14:28but again i have a dedicated video where
14:31i share a few tips on the accuracy topic
14:33and i will link it here and in the show
14:35notes for you to check it out so how
14:37much the freestyle library 2 will cost
14:38me you might be asking well the price
14:40very much depends on your insurance
14:42coverage and the country where you live
14:44i get 26 sensors per year covered by my
14:47insurance so i get the free study grade
14:49two sensors basically for free if i had
14:51to pay out of pocket one sensor would
14:53cost me somewhere around 60 euros or 70
14:56dollars there are a couple ways how you
14:58can reduce your cost many countries like
15:00the us the uk and some others introduce
15:04a free trial program where you can get
15:06your first censor or even a couple of
15:08them totally for free i will put the us
15:10and the uk free trial links in the show
15:13notes but if you live in any other
15:15countries google ask around try to find
15:18out if there is a free trial program in
15:20your country available to you another
15:21savings tip is don't pay up for the
15:23reader you really don't need it if you
15:26have a phone that has nfc and bluetooth
15:28function which all the newer phones have
15:31you don't need a reader you can do
15:32everything on the phone this is another
15:34way how to save a few dollars now i know
15:36in some countries freestyling 2 is still
15:38not available and you guys are using
15:41freestyle bray one and i really wish
15:43that freestyle libre 2 or even freestyle
15:46library 3 will make it to your country
15:48really soon i can't tell you when
15:50because the launch dates are never made
15:52public before the launch days actually
15:54happened but i cross my fingers for
15:56everyone if you've been watching this
15:58channel for some time then you probably
16:00know that my personal opinion is that
16:03it's totally worth it to use a cgm it
16:06doesn't have to be freestyle freestyling
16:07too but for me i've been using a cgm for
16:10about four or five years it had been a
16:12game changer for me my average blood
16:14sugars and my timing range improved
16:16dramatically and for most of this time i
16:18have been using freestyle braid too the
16:20main benefit of the system is that it's
16:22really easy to use you have the
16:24information available 24 7 and you get
16:27an alarm when something is not going
16:28right when you are climbing too high or
16:31when you are dropping too low it allows
16:33you to live a full life with diabetes
16:35the two main drawbacks of the system in
16:37my opinion is that you can't calibrate
16:40the sensor and that the sensor doesn't
16:42work as part of a closed-loop system or
16:45automated insulin delivery system
16:47freestyle brace 3 should at some point
16:49but freestyle library 2 doesn't the main
16:51alternative to freestyle library 2 in
16:53most countries is dexcom g6 which is
16:56another cgm i tried and i made a video
16:59where i compared libre 2 and dexcom g6
17:02you can click here and watch the video
17:04right now don't forget to get your
17:05discount on the skin grip patches link
17:08is down below and i will see you in the
17:10next video ciao
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FAQs about This YouTube Video

1. What are the features of the FreeStyle Libre 2 continuous glucose monitor?

The FreeStyle Libre 2 continuous glucose monitor comes with features such as real-time glucose readings, customizable alarms for high and low glucose levels, and a built-in trend arrow to indicate the direction and rate of glucose change.

2. What are the benefits of using the FreeStyle Libre 2 continuous glucose monitor?

The benefits of using the FreeStyle Libre 2 continuous glucose monitor include freedom from routine fingersticks, continuous glucose monitoring with easy access to glucose data, and the ability to share glucose data with healthcare professionals and caregivers.

3. What are the drawbacks of the FreeStyle Libre 2 continuous glucose monitor?

Some drawbacks of the FreeStyle Libre 2 continuous glucose monitor may include the need for a separate receiver or smartphone for glucose data retrieval, the possibility of inaccurate readings during rapid glucose changes, and the cost of sensors and transmitters.

4. How accurate is the FreeStyle Libre 2 continuous glucose monitor?

The accuracy of the FreeStyle Libre 2 continuous glucose monitor is comparable to traditional blood glucose monitoring systems, and it has been shown to have high accuracy in clinical studies when used properly.

5. What is the cost of using the FreeStyle Libre 2 continuous glucose monitor?

The cost of using the FreeStyle Libre 2 continuous glucose monitor includes expenses for the sensor, transmitter, and receiver or smartphone, as well as potential additional costs for accessories and replacement components over time.

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