Surviving on one Test strip a day: fact or fiction
To many of us diabetic’s the very notion of testing lessor and lessor is blasphemous. When the subject a rose a few months a go thanks to some new medicare guidelines on blood glucose testing,I couldn’t help but interject on the discussion, of course it is insane to think that testing less is a good idea. Blood Glucose levels fluctuate every few minutes and not keeping up with them is not only dangerous but down right stupid for a diabetic.
Cost variables are always high on the totem pole however especially when one has to fork over the exorbitant amount it requires to keep this critical component of diabetes management going on a monthly basis. It is no wonder that testing is always the first component of diabetes management that falls on the wayside when lack of funds becomes an issue.
Those little test strips average $.75 to $1 dollar each and the cost grows exponentially the more frequent you use them.
Which means Insurance providers in their quest to preserve their bottom lines have lobbied for the reduction of this cost and the result becomes measures like the medicare guideline recommendations of “one strip per day for diabetics on oral meds and three strips per day for those of us who shoot up”. Studies that recommended the need to eliminate daily blood glucose monitoring for those who had achieved a measure of control in their diabetes management and the use of A1C tests alone Have diabetics in an uproar.
You are probably scoffing at the Sheer lunacy of this kind of mentality and I probably do agree with you but bear with me while I play devil’s advocate for a minute.
The goal for an effective diabetes management program is to maintain an even keel on daily blood glucose levels and for this purpose we will limit carbs, inject Insulin and exercise. The extent of this exercise depends on how much control one has of said blood glucose levels and any adjustments are to the extent that it brings one closer to control.
Lets assume for the sake of argument that one has control of their diabetes management and has achieved the elusive under 6% a1c number, this person has a command of his diabetes management program and has achieved a state of nirvana in it. Aside from the occasional management of a low or spike the daily numbers are at an even level.
When this person tests to get their fasting blood glucose number and uses that number as a barometer for the rest of the day, knowing exactly how much the amount carbs they consume on that day will raise their BG’s and how much the combination of exercise and medication will get them back to the correct levels again.
This from a friend
“I find that the fasting blood glucose reading I take in the
morning as soon as I arise has become the key barometer which tells
me how well I’m managing my Type II diabetes, so I’ve stopped
testing throughout the day unless I feel a low coming on, in which
case I may check my glucose levels frequently until a reading above
80 is achieved. If I’ve behaved poorly the day before, my morning
fasting glucose is higher than goal. On the other hand, if I’ve
behaved well the entire day, my next morning fasting reading will
be at or near my daily fasting glucose goal of 100, assigned to me
by my endocrinologist.”
Could this person survive on one test strip a day?
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