Blood Glucose Meters - Diabetes Test Strips - Health Article

Blood Glucose Meters - Diabetes Test Strips

Blood glucose meter reviews

Blood glucose meter is an electronic device for determining the concentration of glucose in the blood (blood sugar). For this purpose, a blood sample is venous, arterial or capillary taken and applied for. As a blood glucose test strips and then analyzed using the meter. Commercially, there is a variety of devices with different features.

Technology

The first devices for home use certain sugar content photometrically. For this purpose, a drop of blood on a test strip into a beam path inside the machine was introduced. The sugar content was then determined from the characteristic light absorption of the reacting with the glucose test strip chemistry. This light absorption is dependent on the glucose concentration.

In the amperometric measurement, the blood is applied to a small test strip and the test strip is drawn through a capillary into a test pad not visible from the outside. Here, the glucose reacts with an enzyme, for. Example, glucose oxidase, and closes the contact between the various electrodes. The blood glucose meter creates these contacts a defined voltage and measures the time course of the current that is passed through the blood. From the current course of the unit then determines the blood sugar value.

When photometric measurements, a dye is created or modified by the enzymatic conversion of glucose. The color change can be converted in the blood glucose value.

Blood glucose meters are generally provided for the blood sugar measurement from capillary whole blood, the blood being usually from the finger pad (fingertip) is obtained. Some of these instruments also offer the possibility of measurement of venous or arterial blood. Also, there are measuring devices that are permitted for the measurement of blood samples from alternate sites, such. As the heel of the hand or forearm. However, it is often referred to measurement differences between the fingertip and the alternative test sites (thenar or forearm). The blood flow in the finger pad is significantly higher than in other places, so rapid Blutzuckeran- and -abstiege in the areas with high blood flow can also be measured in real time. For this reason, the measurement from the finger pad is recommended at low or rapidly falling blood sugar levels often, to avoid hypoglycaemia (hypoglycaemia).

Depending on the calibration by the manufacturer of blood glucose meters whole blood measurements or plasma equivalent readings can view. Plasma-equivalent values are obtained by conversion from whole blood values and are close to the measured values determined from plasma. The difference is depending on the hematocrit of the blood sample, it can be determined to about 11%, however, with a mean hematocrit of 43%; by this percentage are the plasma values higher than whole blood values. To avoid confusion or a likelihood of the measured values and corresponding medication errors, a uniform conversion of blood glucose meters is recommended to display the plasma equivalent results.

Measurements with laboratory instruments, however, often find from venous blood plasma instead, because, inter alia, the practice recommendation of the German Diabetes Association for the diagnosis of diabetes mellitus, the use of venous plasma recommends. For diagnosis of diabetes mellitus also only a laboratory wet-chemically determined value is permitted, as this is more accurate. However, venous blood measurements can not be compared with plasma equivalent values obtained from capillary blood.

Functions

Like all devices of the electronics are further developed blood glucose monitoring devices continuously: The devices are smaller, cheaper, faster and become more efficient, some monitors require a blood volume of only about 0.4 microliters (measurement duration newer appliances between 3 and 5 sec.). Besides the actual blood sugar determination have some modern measuring devices, a number of special features designed to facilitate the handling of the patient. This includes, for. Example, an illumination of the insertion of the blood glucose test strips or the display so that the measurement can be carried out even in poor lighting conditions. Especially for visually impaired diabetics, there are also devices with a short-term extra-large display of values or devices showing in warning color at elevated or low blood sugar, as well as devices with voice function that announce the measured values in addition to the display in the display, either in German or Turkish.

Many devices also feature individually adjustable memory function, indicating a pending measurement by a beep. Some devices also possess a device that allows you to insert multiple test strips in the composite, so that for several consecutive measurements (for example, when traveling) no strip change is required. Today is an encoding for newly fractured test strip packages in most devices no longer necessary.

Above all newer devices offer several options for logging, processing and linking of the measured blood glucose levels, for example, information on the medication as well as with personal diet and exercise data, which decrease the handwritten performing a diabetes diary the patient and allow him greater mobility and flexibility. It can hundreds of individual blood glucose values stored, calculated mean values over several weeks and maximum and minimum values are shown. In addition, numerous instruments offer the patient the option under certain preferences have meals, exercise or information on subjective being ("feel uncomfortable", "stress") to enter.

A variety of common devices can now transfer this data by means of special medical software via a USB or infrared interface to a computer; the logged values can be read, for example, in the diabetes care practice or to your home PC or transferred in an Internet portal in a preinstalled patient record that can see also the treating physician. In addition to this direct transfer, in which the blood glucose meter is connected directly to a computer, it is also possible to forward the corresponding values through an intermediate transmission device from the meter to an online portal; since a few years, this is also possible via phone: originally in a 3-component communication from the meter via Bluetooth to a mobile phone equipped with special software and from there to an online diabetes diary. This allows a direct communication between patient and doctor and eg an automatic alert to medical personnel in case of imminent metabolic imbalances. There are also small types of devices that were designed specifically to attach to an iPhone that allow each by means of a special app, the immediate online processing of the measured values, and sending it by e-mail.

Some blood glucose meters include a so-called bolus calculator. A bolus calculator calculates the insulin dose based on the current blood glucose value, the daytime-dependent insulin sensitivity (also called correction factor) and the blood glucose sasaran value or region; optional meal insulin doses can often be determined by the carbohydrate factor and the amount of carbohydrate. Some devices can also consider active insulin in the calculation.

Safety and reliability of the devices is largely guaranteed in patients everyday, although "the quality of the measurement quality of devices from different manufacturers ... a considerable bandwidth" having.

Costs and importance of blood glucose self-monitoring

Treatment of diabetes mellitus type 1, when insulin-treated type 2 diabetic patients and also in the treatment of gestational diabetes, the blood glucose self-monitoring have become indispensable. The self-monitoring is recommended for both insulin-dependent and non-insulin-dependent diabetics as an "important element of the diabetes therapy" in all recognized pembinaan programs. In a statement, the German Diabetes Society and other organizations is emphasized that the blood glucose self-monitoring even in non insulin-dependent type 2 diabetes is a "crucial for the motivation, pembinaan and treatment of the patient".

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