The lifeblood of any diabetic. Why? You have to know what your blood sugar is to know what you need to do. Do you need to eat? More medication? Less medication? More insulin? Less insulin?
Test. Don’t guess.
So, as long as I’m testing, does it matter what meter I use? It isn’t like there is a shortage of brands, or styles, or even colors. Of course, there are important differences between meters. Some have larger displays. Require less blood. Have a backlight. In speaking with other diabetics, it seems like some meters even read higher or lower than others.
How did I decide?
When I was first diagnosed I used an Accu-Chek meter. I used to have to wait 30 seconds for a result. The longer term diabetics can’t believe it when I say that seemed like forever. I have a negative emotional attachment to the Accu-Chek brand because my diabetes was so horribly misdiagnosed and mismanaged during that time. It was hard for me to continue to use that meter after my DKA hospitalization.
About a year later, my insurance chose the Lifescan products as their preferred brand – which meant I could get their strips for the lowest co-pay. I have switched insurance companies a few times since then, but have continued to use Lifescan meters.
I would say about 90% of the time I am using the One Touch UltraLink which sends the results directly to my insulin pump. This is mostly for convenience sake. Let’s say that my blood sugar is 200 mg/dL, it is much easier to have the number just show up on the screen than scroll up from my target of 90 mg/dL.
The other 10% of the time I am using the One Touch UltraMini. It uses the same strips as the UltraLink – which is Ultra convenient. Out of the case, the UltraMini is a much smaller meter that fits nicely into big pockets and small purses for quick trips. I can even pick one to match most of my outfits.
What’s your favorite meter and why?