Are you one of the increasing number of people with diabetes who needs to monitor their blood sugar levels at home. If so, it is important to know how the tests work and what can effect the results giving inaccurate readings.
Diabetes Mellitus is a widespread disease that is caused by high blood glucose. However, it is not extremely difficult to cure and there have been cases of patients recovering from diabetes and continuing a normal life. There are many ways to control and monitor diabetes. For a long time, urine has been used as a way to check the amount of glucose in the body. However, it is no longer considered reliable. In its place, now blood is used. A machine that is now very commonly used to evaluate abnormal and normal blood glucose level is the Blood Glucose Monitor.
A blood glucose monitor or glucose meter is a small portable battery-powered electronic device that now comes in several models. The glucose meter is used to determine the deviations from the normal blood glucose level. The glucose test and the glucose reading are used to diagnose diabetes. These machines provide glucose readings from 0 to 600 mg/dl. Newer models now allow people to use blood from places other than the fingertip, which is the most common place from which it is extracted. Some models have large digital display and even spoken instructions for people with visual problems. Some models require smaller drops of blood than others. One must be careful while choosing a model, as it is an expenditure that has to be thought over. It is advisable to discuss with other users before buying one as all models have their pluses and minuses.
A blood glucose meter is an instrument that can be used even at home. This Blood glucose meter is used for taking a glucose test and it is a must have for those undergoing diabetes treatment. There is usually a special coated strip on which a drop of blood is placed. The blood is usually taken from the fingertip using a lancing device, which shoots a small, lancet into the skin. However, it is not necessary for it to be taken from the fingertip and sometimes blood is taken from other places like the forearm, thigh, calf or upper arm as the fingertip often gets calloused and sore. The blood is placed on the opposite side of the strip though this depends on the blood glucose meter. Then this strip is inserted into the blood glucose meter.
The blood reacts with chemicals on the strip and the blood glucose meter receives an electronic pulse. The machine then calculates the amount of glucose in the blood and displays glucose reading on the digital screen. A record of the readings will go a long way in helping the physician decide on the kind of diabetes treatment that needs to be given to the patient.
There is also another way of detecting the abnormal or normal blood glucose level in the body. Here, the drop of blood is placed on a special strip that changes color, depending on the amount of glucose. There is a color-coded index that comes along with it that will have listed the particular color the strip changes into when it reacts with the blood and judges the amount of glucose in it. There will be different colors for different amount of glucose. However glucose reading is not very accurate, as it does not give you the exact amount of glucose present.
A blood glucose monitor gives fairly accurate readings if used properly. The glucose meter has to be maintained. It may become old and dirty and if it is kept at high temperature or humidity, the machine’s glucose reading may become inaccurate. It must be cleaned with a slightly damp cloth every now and then, to keep it dirt free. The hand from which the blood is taken must be clean and dry. Otherwise, the dirt may interfere with the glucose test results.
This glucose test will help people keep track of the glucose level in their blood and control their normal blood glucose levels and continue their diabetes treatment effectively. They will be help patients to make dietary changes and adjust their consumption of fat and carbohydrates. This will help them maintain normal blood glucose level and undertake any glucose treatment if necessary.