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From Monroe, New Jersey, USA:

I am a 76 year old female diagnosed with type 2 diabetes a month ago, and my doctor suggests I take my blood glucose readings only once a day fasting before breakfast, but my diabetes educator suggests twice a day at a different time each day. Presently, I am bringing my readings with diet only. How I know if what I am is doing is correct by only checking once a day? I've been doing it two times a day but find that the test strips are very expensive -- far over the amount Medicare will pay.


The number of times you test your blood sugar is ultimately your choice, not your doctor's nor your educator's. As a general rule of thumb, people with type 2 diabetes who are not on medications could test less frequently (such as once a day) provided their hemoglobin A1c is less than 1% above the normal range for the lab performing the test (usually about 7%). If it is greater than this, then we need information about when the sugar is too high so we can help you get it down. The only way to get this information is to do some testing before and two hours after meals and look for patterns.

Find out what your A1c is and whether it is below where it should be. If it is not, ask your diabetes educator to help you get your test strips through a supplier that works with Medicare. If your educator documents the need for more frequent testing (such as fluctuating blood sugars), Medicare will allow the two strips a day your educator is recommending.


Original posting 16 Oct 2002
Posted to Blood Tests and Insulin Injections


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