Glucose Meter / Contour Next Test Strips / One Touch Ultra & Accu Chek
At AvaCare Medical, we carry a full line of diabetic testing supplies including glucose meters, blood sugar monitors, and diabetic test strips. With monitors and supplies from the best glucometer brands, from One Touch Ultra 2 to Accu Chek Aviva to Contour Next Test Strips, we’ve got all your needs covered! Read More...
What is a glucose meter?
Glucometers, also referred to as blood sugar monitors, glucose meters, and blood glucose meters, are measurement systems used by diabetics to self-measure the level of glucose or sugar in their bloodstream.
How accurate are home glucose meters?
Home glucometers are usually very accurate, although results generally differ from lab results.
To ensure that your glucose meter is giving you accurate readings, consider the following important factors which directly affect the accuracy of results:
Use blood glucose testing best practices.
- Thoroughly wash and dry your hands and the testing site prior to testing. This is crucial as dirt, alcohol and other substances present on skin can lead to incorrect results.
- Use fingertip samples. While some diabetics prefer testing their forearm, calf, thigh, or upper arm to reduce pain, these sites are only recommended when the blood sugar level is stable. The fingertip, on the other hand, is quick, easy and the most accurate testing site.
- Produce sufficient amount of blood. Try to apply a generously-sized blood globule to the test strip.
- Do not add additional samples once you’ve touched the glucose test strip with blood to avoid affecting the results.
- Test properly. If you do not insert the test strip fully into the glucose meter, your monitor can’t do its work properly, so make sure you’re doing it right the first time.
Take good care of your blood glucose monitoring supplies.
- Avoid extreme temperatures. For best results, store your blood sugar monitor at room temperature. The same rule applies to your test strips.
- Replace batteries regularly. Defective or dying batteries are a common cause of inaccurate glucose measurement readings. Replace monitor batteries as necessary to prevent this issue.
- Protect your test strips from damage. Store diabetic test strips in the original, sealed container and avoid exposure to humidity, moisture, and heat.
- Use the right test strips. Only use the strips intended for the monitor you use. If you are having a hard time finding compatible strips or find the current brand you are using too expensive, you may want to consider switching to another monitor.
- Always dispose of expired or used test strips. Glucose test strips are intended for single use and have an expiration date. Never use damaged or outdated test strips.
Other things to consider:
- Ensure that the coding is correct. Depending on the specific meter you are using, you may be required to have the code number on the device match to the code number on the test strip container. If these numbers do not match, you will not get proper readings.
- Are you dehydrated? If you are, or you are suffering from anemia (low red blood cell count), test results will be somewhat incorrect.
Glucose Meter & Supplies Prices
While blood sugar systems and supplies like test strips and control solutions can be bought at rock-bottom prices, long-term blood glucose monitoring adds up and can become very expensive.
Depending on the features you need and whether you’re able to use a product line that isn’t from a brand name such as One Touch Ultra or Accu Chek, your prices will vary greatly. For example, prices for monitors can range from less than $10 (see EvenCare G2 Blood Glucose System) to nearly $250 (see Accutrend Plus Meter Kit). Standard quality monitors are usually priced between $30 to $60.
Test Strip Prices
Since it is recommended to use test strips that are compatible with your monitor, prices for these will directly depend on the brand you use. In addition, the cost will depend on how many you need to use per month. For diabetics who are not on insulin, approximately 100 test strips per month will suffice. For those on insulin who are testing each morning and before and after every meal, up to 350 test strips may be needed a month. Without insurance, high-accuracy testing products like the Contour Next test strips can easily cost between $200 - $700 per month. On the opposite extreme, a cheap test strip may cost as little as $0.15 per strip, bringing the monthly cost to $15 - $50. Most glucose testing strips cost between $0.60 to $1.
Miscellaneous Glucose Monitoring Costs
Control solutions, which mimic blood to test the monitor as needed, are relatively inexpensive and prices run between $3 and $15. You will also need to consider the cost of lancets per month, as this cost can also add up over time.
Do you need a prescription for a blood glucose monitor?
No; blood glucose monitors can be bought over-the-counter or online without a prescription, note from doctor, or insurance approval. This is important for diabetics to know when their insurance refuses coverage, a temporary replacement is needed, or they find themselves without enough supplies to last the prescription dates.
In general, however, most patients will try to purchase the majority of their diabetic supplies, including blood glucose monitoring kits, through insurance, since, as mentioned previously, the long-term costs of blood sugar measurement adds up.
If you or a loved one has diabetes, you may also want to visit our sharps container page for a safe way to dispose of insulin needles. You can also find a full selection of lancets as well as a large variety of diabetes care products, including foot care products, insulin pump belts, glucose control drinks, and diabetic alert bracelets.
At AvaCare Medical, we’re here to improve not only your online shopping experience but also your overall wellness. If you need help finding the best products for your needs, simply give us a call today at 1-877-813-7799. We look forward to assisting you!