Who Are They Useful For
CGMs can help people with diabetes monitor and maintain their blood glucose levels. While they do not involve finger pricking, they may be useful for calibrating the device.
Earlobe, breath, and other noninvasive devices may be beneficial for monitoring blood glucose levels, especially in children with the same condition and those who have cystic fibrosis. However, they are not FDA-approved, and some may need further testing to determine their safety and accuracy.
To learn more about diabetes and how to monitor and manage the condition, visit our dedicated hub.
MNT chooses at-home tests that meet the following criteria:
- Budget: MNT chooses products that suit a wide range of budgets.
- FDA approval: MNT chooses products that have been cleared or approved by the FDA.
- Smartphone compatibility:MNT selects products that are easily connected to smart devices and provide regular readings via an app.
Please note that the writer of this article has not tried these products. All information presented is purely research-based and correct at the time of publication.
Medical News Today follows a strict product selection and vetting process. Learn more here.
Below are four blood sugar monitors that do not require finger pricks.
Do You Want Any Special Features
If you know youll be carrying this meter with you while on the go, you may want a compact option. On the other hand, if you have a hard time holding on to small models, you may prefer a large meter with strips that are easier to use.
People with impaired vision may prefer a meter that has an easy-to-read screen or verbal commands and prompts.
Colorful options are available for children.
Other special features include:
Best Glucose Meters: The Different Types
Currently, there are three main types of glucose meter:
- Basic blood glucose meters
- Continuous glucose monitors
- CGM-Insulin Pump Combos
The most simple glucometers are handheld devices with a digital screen that displays a reading, and these are the devices were mostly focusing on with our guide to the best glucose meters. These readings are gathered from disposable blood sugar test strips treated with specific chemicals that react to glucose. A new test strip is inserted into the glucometer for each new reading.
Standard glucometers are usually battery operated and capable of storing readings, and many can be connected to a computer so that you can download and store your readings to look back on as needed.
Some basic blood glucose meters are designed with a spring-loaded needle that pricks the side of your fingertip to draw a small drop of blood for testing. Others use an external lancing device.
Once blood is drawn, you touch it to the test strip, which will absorb your blood sample and display a reading on the glucometers screen. While response times vary between blood sugar monitors, were usually talking seconds.
Some glucose meters are approved for Alternate Site Testing . That means they give results within 20% of correct values when used on alternative sites such as the palm, forearm or thigh. However, Diabetes Self Management advises that, you should still check alternate site readings on yourself before trusting them too much.
Also Check: Safe Glucose Level For Type 2 Diabetes
Features To Look For In Blood Glucose Monitors
Blood glucose meters can come with a lot of different features and, depending on your needs, will determine the level of importance you place on these features. Your doctor or health care professional is also likely to help you when it comes to choosing the right meter for your needs.
Blood glucose meters are all quite compact in size and easily portable. Take a look at the size of the display screen on the meter. Is it large enough and are the results clearly visible for you?
Light at strip port
This can be a useful feature to easily see and help guide where the strip needs to go. It’s not a common feature among blood glucose meters, only one of the products we tested has a light strip at the port.
This is useful to easily see the screen if you need to take a reading during the night or in low light conditions.
The meters we’ve tested can store anywhere from 99 to 2000 results. Being able to monitor your blood glucose levels over time is important for long-term management.
Test strips should be very easy for you to get out of the container. In some cases the strips can tend to stick together which can become an annoyance and if they are individually wrapped they can be more time-consuming to open. An ejector for the strip could also be a useful feature.
Some meters are compatible with your mobile or smart device via Bluetooth, while a couple we’ve tested are app-based.
Advantages And Disadvantages Of Glucometers
It is essential that you understand the advantages and disadvantages of a standard glucometer in order to be able to make the best purchase decision for yourself.
- Your skin wont swell up.
- You dont need to use it all day.
- You may have sore fingertips.
- Supplies can get expensive if you dont use a brand thats covered by your insurance.
Read Also: How Accurate Are Blood Glucose Meters
With Insulin Pumps Its Your Choice
The important thing to know is that a pump gives you options. You can get a pump, wear it for a time, decide to stop wearing it, and restart it if you think it will fit better with your treatmentwork with your insurance to match whatever works for you.
Pumps are an extra piece of hardware attached to your body. Theyre programmed to deliver insulin continuously , or as a surge dose close to mealtime to control the rise in blood sugar after a meal. They work by closely mimicking your body’s normal release of insulin.
Monitoring Your Blood Sugar
Regular blood sugar monitoring is the most important thing you can do to manage type 1 or type 2 diabetes. Youll be able to see what makes your numbers go up or down, such as eating different foods, taking your medicine, or being physically active. With this information, you can work with your health care team to make decisions about your best diabetes care plan. These decisions can help delay or prevent diabetes complications such as heart attack, stroke, kidney disease, blindness, and amputation. Your doctor will tell you when and how often to check your blood sugar levels.
Most blood sugar meters allow you to save your results and you can use an app on your cell phone to track your levels. If you dont have a smart phone, keep a written daily record like the one in the photo. You should bring your meter, phone, or paper record with you each time you visit your health care provider.
Sometimes having high blood sugar can feel like a test you didnt pass. But numbers are just numbers. Think of them instead as information. Did a certain food or activity make your levels go up or down? Armed with that knowledge, you can make adjustments and get closer to your target range more often.
Recommended Reading: How To Fix Blood Sugar
Best Glucose Meter For Small Blood Samples
Analyzing data from past blood sugar readings could help you spot potential trends, and Dario is one of the best glucose meters for doing just that. The no-coding Dario LC Blood Glucose Monitoring System works with a companion app and automatically records results in-app, saving you the hassle of inputting data.
The Dario LC Blood Glucose System has over 2,900 reviews on Amazon, with an average rating of 4.3 out of 5 stars, while the products listing on Best Buy has 19 reviews , also scoring an average of 4.3 out of 5. The majority of reviews are positive, praising the meters compact size, ease of use, and large display. The minority of critical reviews focus on accuracy of results after a few weeks of use, though Dario says that 95% of measurements are within ±15% of the medical laboratory values.
The Dario LC Blood Glucose Monitoring System is also designed to provide analysis of your readings, and you can opt to share data with your doctor or healthcare professional as needed.
This glucometer is small and lightweight, which is essential if youre carrying it with you throughout the day. You dont have to fiddle around with batteries or charging cables either, as it connects directly to your phone via its charging port. The device tracks a variety of metrics including carb intake, exercise and medication.
- Read our Dario LC Blood Glucose System review
Ohcare Lite Blood Sugar Test Kit
OhCare Lite Blood Sugar Test Kit is an incredibly accurate kit which is medically best graded and affordable in range for everyone. Their test strips are not only FDA approved and ISO standardized, but also are tested against YSI 2300 auto analyzed in three separate labs which says that the results are precise by the latest biosensor they have used, as per the companys manual.
Worried about the lancets that either dont work or are too rough? No more worries. This testing kit provides you a medical grade reusable lancet device which has 5 depth settings. Using it, you can choose the depth to prick by yourself. As they are the painless lancets, no more hissing!
The ijCare Blood Glucose testing kit contains a Glucometer with an auto eject strip function and 110x lite strips made of the latest biosensor technology. It has the lancets that cause less pain, a level 2 control solution to apply before the test for the accurate result and a log book to track the results.
Coming to the FDA approved meter, this auto coding meter reminds you when to perform the next test. It can hold upto 365 results. To get the reading, It needs 0.5µg of blood, and within 5 seconds, the result will be displayed on the screen.
Also Check: Best Glucose Meter With Cheapest Strips
How Do I Test The Accuracy Of My Blood Glucose Meter
Many professionals recommend checking the accuracy of your blood glucose meter at least once every month.
You can check on the accuracy of your blood glucose meter by performing a control solution test. This involves performing a test using control solution instead of blood.
If you do not have any control solution or it is no longer in date, many meter manufacturers will be happy to send you a vial of control solution free of charge.
Fora Test N’go Voice Bluetooth Blood Glucose Meter
In the end, I have the FORA Test NGO Voice Bluetooth Blood Glucose Meter.
As you can see in the name, it comes with Bluetooth connectivity. As a result, you get audible results with volume control in English or Spanish.
Along with that, it comes with LCD backlight, 4 alarm settings, 450 test memories with date and time.
In a nutshell
Overall, this one is a pretty great option for those people with eyesight. However, you should know that the voice feature lacks some features. But as long as it comes to ease of use, it would make your job pretty easy. Also, you will find the test strips on Floras website.
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Best For Home: Auvon Ds
Courtesy of Amazon
Does not include control solution
When youre testing from the comfort of your own home, its easier to get a little bit more high tech with your monitoring system. This glucometer from AUVON utilizes cutting-edge test trips that consistently surpass international accuracy standards. The strips are produced using an automatic carbon printing technique, which ensures that they remain both stable and precise.
The lancet device used to retrieve your blood sample is also said to be less painful than others, which may help you better stick to your testing regimen. The monitor itself fits comfortably in the palm of your hand, is easy to read, and stores continuous 7-, 14-, and 30-day average results.
This kit comes with the AUVON DS-W blood glucose monitor, one battery, 150 blood test strips, 25 lancets, one lancing device, a meter use guide, and a test strip user guide. It does not include a control solution.
Result Speed: N/A | Included in Kit: Monitor, 150 test strips, lancing device, lancets, batteries, carrying bag
How We Rated Glucometers
4.8 to 5 stars: These are the best glucometers we reviewed. We recommend them without reservation.
4.5 to 4.7 stars: These glucometers are excellentthey might have minor flaws, but we still recommend them.
4.0 to 4.5 stars: We think these are great glucometers, but others are better.
3.5 to 3.9 stars: These glucometers are just average.
3.4 and below: We don’t recommend glucometers with this rating you won’t find any on our list.
Read Also: Dario Blood Glucose Monitoring Kit
Where Can I Test My Blood Sugar Besides My Finger
The finger is the most reliable area for a person to test their blood sugar. However, some monitors may allow for alternate site testing. These alternate sites may include the palm, upper forearm, abdomen, calf, and thigh.
A person should always check the instructions on their blood glucose monitor to check if this is possible before performing alternate site testing.
Blood Glucose Testing For Type 2 Diabetes
In the UK, the National Health Service does not permit people with type 2 diabetes who are not treated with insulin access to diabetes test strips on prescription unless doctors state a legitimate reason or benefit for a particular patient.
The reasons for this approach may be due to the cost to the NHS of providing test strips and the fact that there are no available resources to offer education on blood glucose testing to individuals with type 2 diabetes
However, there is now a bank of evidence that structured Self-Monitoring of Blood Glucose can have positive effects on people with non-insulin dependent type 2 diabetes, including helping them to better understand their condition, reduce their HbA1c levels, and improve their diabetes control.
You May Like: Relion Prime Blood Glucose Test Strips
The Devices That Passed Were:
Contour Next from Ascensia 100%
Gmate Smart from Philosys 71%
Get the full data and all the accuracy information here.
While all of these meters received FDA clearance at some point, this study shows that not all are equivalent in terms of accuracy. The FDA looks at company-reported trials when it reviews new meters this study took an independent look, purchasing the meters directly through retailers and testing them rigorously at respected research centers. It should be noted that the study’s standards for accuracy were even higher than FDA standards.
The results may be particularly frustrating for those on Medicare. According to , about 68% of the Medicare mail orders for BGMs in 2016 were for meters that did not pass the DTS standards. It is not yet clear how the FDA will respond to the reports of particularly low-accuracy meters such as the Advocate Redi-Code+ and the GmateSmart, which have been criticized for inaccuracy before.
On the other hand, it is encouraging that two store-brand value meters, Walmarts ReliOn Confirm and CVS Advanced, showed great accuracy in this study.
This study was funded by Abbott but developed and run independently. . Its not clear if DTS will get funding to run this study on an ongoing basis, ensuring the meters on the market are accurate and reliable. Dr. Joan Parkes, a co-author of the study, expressed her hope that manufacturers would support DTS in doing more of these studies.
Fora 6 Connect Blood Glucose Testing Meter Kit
The FORA 6 Connect Blood Glucose Testing Meter Kit can also help you with fast and accurate results. It is one of the best Bluetooth glucometer in its range
You will be able to check your sugar readings in just 5 seconds with a tiny drop of blood.
It only requires 0.5 microliters of blood.
In a nutshell
Overall, it comes with quite a lot of features, and the device is extremely easy to use. But the lack of test strips is something that would stop most of the users from buying this one. But the good part is that you can order them through the official store of Flora.
Read Also: Sugar-free Recipes For Diabetics
How Accurate Are Blood Glucose Meters
In 2013, new and tighter accuracy standards were issued for blood glucose meters to achieve. The previous accuracy guidelines were issued in 2003.
Where a blood glucose has met the 2013 ISO standards, we have included this fact within our meter reviews. Because of the possible implications if they are inaccurate, most manufacturers make certain that their products give accurate readings. However, testing the meter regularly to ensure that it is still accurate is a good idea, as meters can become less accurate over time.
Top 10 Blood Glucose Meters
|1. Contour Net EZ||4.8 out of 5||5 seconds test results, bluetooth, quick and easy to setup||$29.50|
|Bluetooth, high contrast display and easy to use||$29.99|
|Alternate places testing, no coding required, results in 4 seconds||$13.49|
|no scrolling, can spot check patterns and alerts you||$17.99|
|Portable, results in 5 seconds and stores 400 test results||$22.95|
|No coding required, 4-second results, up to 500 results stored||$9.99|
|Stores up to 500 test results and affordable test strips||$22.61|
|8. Livongo Health In Touch Meter||3.2 out of 5||5 seconds result period, and unlimited test strips offer||$75.00|
|5 seconds glucose results and 10 seconds ketone results||$19.99|
|10. Accu-Chek Smartview from Roche||4.2 out of 5|
Discounted and moved from top 10
- CVS Advanced From Agamatrix
- Accuracy DTS passed accuracy
- Features Quick to set up and start using, personal hi/low range setting, rapid test results of five seconds or less, does not have Bluetooth technology, offers meal planning tips
- to read reviews.
The Contour Next EZ is great for people with diabetes or anyone new to blood glucose testing or for those who dont need all the fancy bells and whistles on a monitor. The display screen is not backlit, therefore, it may be hard to read in poor lighting. The entire meter fits well in a hand coming in at just over 3 inches tall and about 2 inches wide.
It’s available on Amazon. Learn more here.
Also Check: How Does Diabetes Cause Blindness