The primary concern for most diabetics is regulating the amount of sugar in their bloodstream. One of the most effective ways of doing so is to use a glucometer, which is a medical device that will give a patient an estimation of how much glucose is in a drop of blood. Anyone in the market for such a device should know what to look for and use this review as a guide for finding the right one.
What to Look For
Each glucometer will have the same end result: a measurement of blood sugar. However, each comes with its own features that can simplify the process or make the device more user-friendly. For example, someone shopping for a glucose meter may want to take into account the following factors:
- The size: Is it easy to tote around to take frequent measurements?
- The accuracy ratings: Does the device rate well when it comes to giving consistent and accurate results?
- Storage: These devices use test strips and lancets, which must be stored somewhere. Can the glucometer itself hold them, or is there a separate carrying case?
- Flexibility: Will the patient have to prick a fingertip over and over, or can the user to take blood from other areas?
- Blood sample: How much blood must be taken to get a measurement?
Anyone who has to measure blood sugar should also take into account the ease with which the device may be used. With that in mind, here are the top five glucometers and what patients should know about them:
Accu-Check Compact Plus
Instead of keeping strips and lancets separately, this small unit connects them together and has been noted for its extreme ease of use. The glucometer comes with a test strip drum that holds 17 strips and easily drops into the meter without any coding. A removable lancet with 11 settings is attached to the device, which has been deemed as less painful than other lancets. With alternative site testing and results in as little as five seconds, this tool has a glow-in-the-dark screen. It does require a sample size of 1.5 microliters, which is on the larger end of the spectrum. This device measures 4.9 inches by 2.5 inches.
FORA V30a Voice
Data storage, programmable alarms and, yes, even a voice that will tell users what the test results are. This glucometer will give instructions regarding when to apply the sample, which needs to be between 0.5 and 1.1 microliters for accuracy. The unit is equipped for alternate site testing and does not require coding for each new strip used. Lightweight, the device will fit in the palm of most adults’ hands at 3.78 inches by 1.97 inches. Additionally, the unit has built-in data management so users can recognize patterns in blood sugar levels. Lastly, it comes with a carrying case and a five-year warranty.
Bayer Contour Next EZ
Patients who are new to testing or who are looking for something simple will enjoy the Contour Next EZ, which will accurately measure levels between 20 and 600 mg/dL and can be programmed for higher and lower levels. Results come in five seconds or less and are evaluated six to seven times to ensure accuracy. What’s more, the unit can operate at high altitude levels, though it may not function properly at temperatures of 40 degrees or lower. This glucometer is medium in size, measuring at 3.03 inches by 2.24 inches. Its screen is a simple black-and-white display, and users will need to take 0.6 microliters for measurement.
With a bright and easy-to-read screen, the Freestyle Insulinx can be used in just about any lighting condition. For ease of use, the strip port is lighted so patients can easily load the testing strips. A meter in the device will store nearly half a year of readings and enable users to save insulin doses and meal markers. Further, it can sync with software so people can print out reports and comes with a lifetime warranty. The unit needs only 0.3 microliters of blood per sample and measures 2.4 inches by 3.8 inches. This glucometer is only for people who take insulin and do not have a pump, and only fingertip samples are viable.
Just 1.57 inches by 2.9 inches, the Freestyle Lite is the ideal glucometer for people who are on the go. It easily slips into a pocket and requires only 0.3 microliters of blood, so users can test anytime and anywhere. While fingertip samples turn the most accurate results, the device can handle alternate site testing. There is no coding required for new strips, and results come back in as little as five seconds. The device can be paired with software and comes with a lifetime warranty.
By knowing what to look for in a glucose meter, people are more likely to find the device that suits their needs and their lifestyles. Doing the research on different models is key to staying healthy.
images compliments of amazon.com