Diabetes Self-Management Articles

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Tools of the Trade 2012

by Alwa Cooper

Manufacturer: Oak Tree Health

What it does: Oak Tree’s latest meters all share some traits, but each has a feature or two that separates it from the rest. All eight meters require a 0.6-microliter blood sample, and return results in 5 seconds. The EasyPlus R13N, the EasyPlus Voice, and the EasyMax V2 are not approved for alternate site testing, but the other five meters can use blood samples from the fingertip, palm, or forearm. The EasyPlus T1 is a read-only meter with no memory capacity, while the EasyPlus R13N has a memory capacity of 300 results and can alert the user to low blood glucose. The EasyPlus Voice speaks results in English or Spanish and has a memory of 480 results. The EasyMax V2 can store 480 results; the meter also has a light on its strip port (as does the FortisCare 15). The EMMU and EME offer strip ejectors, and the EM50’s design includes a lancing device at one end of the meter and a USB port for connection to a PC computer; the meter is preloaded with diabetes management software. The FortisCare 15, EMMU, EME, and EM50 meters all have a memory of 480 readings. None of the meters requires coding.

Availability: Oak Tree meters are available from durable medical equipment providers and from pharmacies.

FreeStyle InsuLinx

Product: FreeStyle InsuLinx

Manufacturer: Abbott Diabetes Care
(800) 222-3100

What it does: The no-code FreeStyle InsuLinx blood glucose meter requires a 0.3-microliter blood sample and returns results in 4 seconds. It has a USB port to connect to a computer (PC or Mac) for uploading results, and its large touch screen with optional backlight allows the user to read three consecutive blood glucose results at a time. The meter allows marking of results as pre- and postmeal, as well as logging of insulin doses. It has a memory of 165 days, assuming three blood glucose readings and three insulin doses daily, and offers a number of customizable alerts and blood glucose ranges.

Availability: The FreeStyle InsuLinx is available at pharmacies and online retailers.

Glucocard Expression

Product: Glucocard Expression

Manufacturer: ArkrayUSA, Inc.
(855) 646-3235

What it does: The auto-coding Glucocard Expression requires a 1-microliter blood sample taken from the fingertip, palm, or forearm, and returns results in 6 seconds. Results can be spoken aloud in English or Spanish, and the meter uses oversized buttons and picture icons to make it easier to use. The meter is capable of storing 300 results in its memory, and can calculate 7-, 14-, and 30-day blood glucose averages.

Availability: The Glucocard Expression is available from many online retailers.

On Call Vivid

Product: On Call Vivid

Manufacturer: ACON Laboratories
(858) 875-8000

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