Mitigation of hypoglycemia during Ramadan using the flash glucose monitoring system following dose adjustment of insulin and sulphonylurea in patients taking multiple glucose-lowering therapies (The PROFAST-IT Study)

Diabetes Res Clin Pract. 2021 Feb;172:108589. doi: 10.1016/j.diabres.2020.108589. Epub 2020 Dec 13.


Background and hypothesis: Patients with type-2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) on multiple glucose-lowering therapies who fast during Ramadan are at increased risk of hypoglycemia. We have assessed the utility of the flash glucose monitoring system after adjusting the dose of insulin and sulphonylureas to mitigate the risk of hypoglycemia in patients with T2DM who fast during Ramadan.

Patients and methods: Patients with T2DM on either basal insulin or a sulphonylurea and at least 2 other glucose-lowering agents received structured education and adjustment of insulin or sulphonylurea dose according to the PROFAST Ramadan protocol. Glucose variability and episodes of hypoglycemia were assessed using the flash glucose monitoring system (Free Style Libre) before and during Ramadan.

Results: A total of 33 patients with T2DM (on sulphonylurea (SU+) (n = 21), on basal insulin (BI+) (n = 12) aged 50.8 ± 1.6 years with a diabetes duration of 13.1 ± 6.5 years were studied. The average sensor glucose was 154 ± 34 mg/dl (8.5 ± 1.88 mmol/l) with 65.2% in the target range before Ramadan and the average sensor glucose was 156 ± 36 mg/dl (8.6 ± 2.0 mmol/l) with 67.1% in the target range during Ramadan. The incidence of hypoglycemia in the whole group (2.9 v 2.9) and in the SU+ (3.7 vs 3.0) and BI+ (1.7 vs 2.9) groups and eHbA1c (P = 0.56, P = 0.93), average glucose (P = 0.56, P = 0.92) and time within range (P = 0.63, P = 0.73) did not change in the SU+ and BI+ groups, respectively, before and during Ramadan.

Conclusion: Structured education with adjustment of the dose of glucose lowering medication alongside use of the FGMS can effectively mitigate the increased risk of hypoglycemia in patients with T2DM on multiple glucose-lowering therapies who fast during Ramadan.

Keywords: Flash glucose monitoring system; Freestyle Libre; Hyperglycemia; Hypoglycemia; Insulin; Ramadan; Sulphonylurea; Type 2 diabetes.

Publication types

  • Observational Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Blood Glucose / analysis*
  • Blood Glucose Self-Monitoring / methods*
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / drug therapy*
  • Fasting*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hypoglycemia / prevention & control*
  • Hypoglycemic Agents / therapeutic use
  • Insulin / blood
  • Insulin / therapeutic use*
  • Islam
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prospective Studies
  • Sulfonylurea Compounds / therapeutic use*
  • Young Adult


  • Blood Glucose
  • Hypoglycemic Agents
  • Insulin
  • Sulfonylurea Compounds