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Diabetes Management: Blood Glucose Meters

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By Scott Michaels

One of the great things about the Internet is that itís created a global community for discussions of topics such as diabetes. Youíll find there are a number of forums that will allow you to talk to others facing your situation.

If you or someone you love has been diagnosed with diabetes, one of your first steps will likely be to find a glucose meter. There are some things to keep in mind as you make your decision because this piece of equipment is likely to be part of your life for the foreseeable future.

A glucose meter (or glucometer) is a medical device for determining the approximate amount of glucose in a drop of blood obtained by pricking the skin with a lancet. Glucose meters are portable and designed for use by ordinary people, especially those with diabetes.

There are now dozens of models of glucose meters. Typical features common to most. The average size is now approximately the size of the palm of the hand, though some are smaller or a bit larger. They are battery-powered. A consumable element containing chemicals which react with glucose in the drop of blood is used for each measurement. For most models this element is a plastic test strip with a small spot impregnated with glucose oxidase and other components. Each strip can only be used once and is then discarded.

Cost is a major issue for most people, but thereís good news if you have any kind of medical insurance. A glucose meter is typically considered to be a vital part of medical treatment and insurance companies often pay for a portion or the entire cost of the meter. At the same time, there is sometimes a limit on the amount the insurance company will pay, and that may severely limit your options.

While cost is naturally important, remember that youíre going to be living this life from now on. Finding a cheaper glucose meter that requires a more serious stick for blood may seem like the best option when youíre writing the check for the meter, but the tedium of the daily stick may negate that cost in the long run.

There are some companies out there that help with the cost of a glucose meter if you meet specific income guidelines. This may be a good answer if your quandary about which meter to buy is purely based on financial restraints. Remember that Medicare often pays on this important testing equipment as well. Your doctor, druggist or representative of a local medical supply company may also be good sources of information about how to find the best deals and how to get help paying for a glucose meter.

Finding a very inexpensive glucose meter may be the best answer to this situation. If the meter is accurate, itíll get you through the initial period of adjusting your life to the regular testing of your blood sugar. Then take time to do some research into whatís hot and whatís not in glucose meters. Youíll find that some make absolutely ridiculous claims and you may have to ask some questions to find those companies that produce the glucose meter that will work best for you and your lifestyle.

About The Author: A glucose meter (or glucometer) is a medical device for determining the approximate amount of glucose in a drop of blood obtained by pricking the skin with a lancet. www.glucosemeters.diabetic-source.com