Smart insulin pens have the potential to fulfill some of the unmet needs of people with diabetes through the accurate administration of bolus doses, the simplification of documentation relating to diabetes therapy, the improvement of communication and the quality of advice given to patients. 305 (2021) and 336 diabetologists in Germany (2022; 38% female, average age 55.2 years) were asked via an online survey about the importance and use of smart insulin pens. In 2022, only 4.8% of all people with type 1 diabetes and 1.5% of all people with type 2 diabetes used a smart pen. The total estimated utilization in 5 years is 18.3% (2021: 23.9%). The importance of smart pens is currently estimated by diabetologists at 8.0%, which is not very high and lower than in 2021 (15.5%). This also applies to the estimated relevance in 5 years (2022: 24.7 %; 2021: 37.9 %). However, 29.7% of all people with type 1 diabetes are considered to have an indication for a smart pen, 30.8% of people with type 2 diabetes and basal insulin therapy, and 37.6% with multiple injection therapy. The main barriers to smart pens identified were patient preference for prefabricated pens (54.6% agreement), low added benefit (49.4%), lack of interoperability with glucose analysis software (44.3%), lack of interoperability with apps (35.6%), too little choice (need to change insulin), and too high cost (33.9%). Despite a very positive attitude towards digitization of diabetes therapy among physicians (2021: 81.9%; 2022: 86.3%), smart pens are currently used only very rarely and their importance for diabetes therapy is considered rather low. Better, simpler, and patient-friendly solutions are needed so that all types of smart insulin devices can be read easily by glucose management software and users experience perceivable benefits.


L.Heinemann: Consultant; D.Ehrmann: Advisory Panel; Roche Diabetes Care, mySugr, Dexcom, Inc., Speaker's Bureau; Berlin-Chemie AG, Dexcom, Inc. N.Hermanns: Advisory Panel; Insulet Corporation, Research Support; Sanofi-Aventis Deutschland GmbH, Roche Diagnostics, Becton, Dickinson and Company, Speaker's Bureau; Dexcom, Inc., Berlin-Chemie AG. T.Roos: None. B.Kulzer: Advisory Panel; Berlin-Chemie AG, Abbott Diabetes, Bayer Inc., Dexcom, Inc., Novo Nordisk, Insulet Corporation, embecta, Research Support; Sanofi, Roche Diabetes Care.

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