Where do poke yourself for testing?

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MusicForLife
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   Posted 7/18/2016 10:21 AM (GMT -6)   
Hello all,
I've been testing my levels for over a year now. I got some good advice to test on the sides of my fingers. I've been doing that, rotating my fingers.
My question is, for those veterans, where do you test? Do you think that over the years, all of this poking is going to mess up my skin? Often I'll find tiny little scabs and wonder if over time I'll get something like scar tissue.
Thanks for your replies!

Lanie G
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   Posted 7/18/2016 2:13 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi! I've always used the flat pads at the ends of my fingers (the areas that come in contact with keyboard keys), not the sides or the very tips of the fingers. I normally don't use my thumbs though. I do use a different finger each time. I haven't had any little scabs. The lancet can be adjusted if you think it's penetrating too deeply.
Lanie

diabetes moderator
diabetes type 2 controlled by diet and exercise and
metformin
very low carb way of eating

MusicForLife
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Date Joined Nov 2014
Total Posts : 380
   Posted 7/19/2016 8:45 AM (GMT -6)   
Whoooaaaa... I never would have thought to poke there! Do you find it's pretty painful or is it okay? Thanks for the idea, I'm thinking about trying there just to mix it up.
Oddly enough, my thumbs (the sides) are the least-painful spots I get blood from. My lancet is on the lowest setting, go figure!

Lanie G
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   Posted 7/19/2016 9:08 AM (GMT -6)   
I don't have any pain at all. After I test, I press a square of TP on it so it stops bleeding and I keep it gently pressed there for half a minute more of less. I haven't had any problems in these ten years that I've been testing.

I did try the sides of the fingers but it hurt too much. I guess this is because there's more padding on the fleshy pads of the fingers compared to the sides - at least on my hands!

I guess this may be different for different people.
Lanie

diabetes moderator
diabetes type 2 controlled by diet and exercise and
metformin
very low carb way of eating

MusicForLife
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Date Joined Nov 2014
Total Posts : 380
   Posted 7/19/2016 1:13 PM (GMT -6)   
I will need to summon up some courage before poking myself there.
Does the poke area get tender afterwards, say when you use a computer?
Thank you for answering all of my questions, by the way.

Lanie G
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   Posted 7/19/2016 2:05 PM (GMT -6)   
My fingers aren't tender when I'm using the computer. I guess I would say that I don't used the computer immediately after I test my blood sugar, though. I do wash them and do other things around the house of go out or use the computer some minutes later but they've never been tender. On the other hand, the one time I used the side of a finger to test, it really hurt so I never did that again!

You're welcome. I would hope others would pop in and tell us where they test. It's helpful!
Lanie

diabetes moderator
diabetes type 2 controlled by diet and exercise and
metformin
very low carb way of eating

Lynnwood
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   Posted 7/19/2016 2:16 PM (GMT -6)   
I hate needles, and by extension, lancets!

I've read that the blood in the pads of the fingers, like Lanie is saying, is more accurate than the sides of the fingers. Don't recall exactly where I read that or what the logic behind it was.

I also find it more difficult to get enough blood for my meter when I try the sides - and it seems to stay sore longer.

So, it's the pads for me -- and I don't get scabs, and they don't bleed at all after I get enough blood! Perhaps some of that is a function of how hydrated you are and how much flesh/fat you have on your fingers? In general, I have barely enough blood for testing.

Mostly I don't feel any soreness later...

MusicForLife
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Date Joined Nov 2014
Total Posts : 380
   Posted 7/19/2016 2:27 PM (GMT -6)   
I didn't know that readings could be more accurate from different parts of your body! Wow. That's crazy!
I tend to have to "milk" the finger to get more blood, especially from the sides of my ring/pinky fingers. I've learned to start low and work my way up.
Yuck, I agree with you, Lynnwood, I am not a needles girl.

Lanie G
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   Posted 7/19/2016 3:22 PM (GMT -6)   
The more I read, the more I realize I know practically nothing! I never thought about the sides or the pads of the fingers. Here's an interesting blurb about fingers and testing: diabetes.sanofi.us/dear-diabetes-finger-testing/

So, although I have used my index finger, I do not use it as often as the middle, ring and pinky for testing. I don't remember if I've ever used a thumb. And - because I'm right-handed, I've tested my left hand more than my right. I do test my right hand sometimes.

Now, one thing to be aware of is that some meters give you instructions to test elsewhere on the body like your arms (and other meters only mention fingers). Does this mean not all meters have accurate readings from body parts other than fingers? Guess so. I don't even know where the instruction booklet for my meter is now. And it's really strange to write body parts... know what I mean? smhair
Lanie

diabetes moderator
diabetes type 2 controlled by diet and exercise and
metformin
very low carb way of eating

Lynnwood
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   Posted 7/19/2016 8:13 PM (GMT -6)   
Tee-Hee. When one says, "body parts" there is that strange inclination to think that the body parts have been removed from the body. Hence the creepiness!!!

Since I only test once or twice a week, I almost always use my left ring finger. And now that I think about it, even though I use the "pad", it's generally either left or right of the center of the pad.

I've also read that warming the fingers under warm/hot water helps with the blood flow, and along with proper hydration helps us avoid the "milking" experience.

Lanie G
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Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 5915
   Posted 7/19/2016 8:18 PM (GMT -6)   
haha yes, it's so .... impersonal! Body parts.

I've also read about the warm water, and holding the hand down, and 'milking' the finger to get a bead. All this knowledge and probably still wouldn't be able to get into medical school!
Lanie

diabetes moderator
diabetes type 2 controlled by diet and exercise and
metformin
very low carb way of eating

MusicForLife
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2014
Total Posts : 380
   Posted 7/20/2016 12:34 PM (GMT -6)   
I forgot about the part where it's good to hold your hand down too.
That was an interesting little blurb about where to test. It's cool though that someone else was curious too!
One thing I admit I struggle with is staying properly hydrated.
I am a tough blood draw so I try to remember to drink a ton before I get that done. For two years I fasted before getting my A1C test and then just this last time they said that wasn't necessary! So that might have something to do with my hiding veins, I guess.
I hope that in the future, we'll be able to use some tool that makes getting blood virtually painless every single time. How awesome would that be?!?

Lanie G
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Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 5915
   Posted 7/20/2016 2:05 PM (GMT -6)   
You know, considering how often people have to have blood drawn for whatever reason, you'd think that some innovative person could come up with a better way to draw blood. I suppose that would mean not piercing the skin but that would be impossible, right?

And for the A1c, yes, you don't have to fast because the blood test measures blood sugar for the past 90 days.
Lanie

diabetes moderator
diabetes type 2 controlled by diet and exercise and
metformin
very low carb way of eating

MusicForLife
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2014
Total Posts : 380
   Posted 7/21/2016 7:26 AM (GMT -6)   
Who knows? They have those thermometers that you can put up to your head that measures temperature and you don't have to insert it in your mouth.
Maybe in the future there will be some technically advanced device that can measure your levels without even penetrating skin. I'm fairly new to the diabetic world but I can't help but agree, I wish more advances were being made in this field.

Chaul22
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2010
Total Posts : 204
   Posted 7/31/2016 1:15 PM (GMT -6)   
I tend to use the sides of my index or middle finger on either hand. I'll adjust the strength of the device so that I can get a drop that is just big enough after squeezing the finger a little bit. You really don't need much blood these days. It was very back when you basically covered a tiny pad with blood and you could either compare the color of the strip, or have the meter read it optically... in 2 minutes. Then only to claim you wiped the strip pad too much or something.

Speaking of advances. I thought I had read something related to non-invasive glucose meters, so I searched a little.. There already are devices that can draw blood without the use of needles. There also are non-invasive meters and monitors but I'm not so sure about how well these would work yet. One measures blood glucose from tear fluid, but requires you to place a sort of spring under your eye lid to accomplish that. Apparently Google also came up with an eye contact lens that can do the same, but they also have another patent on a device that basically shoots a micro-particle into your finger first (really now, Google). Another only requires you to place your finger on a glass surface, but it takes up to 30 seconds to get a reading. Yet another piece of technology can take a reading from your earlobe without penetrating the skin. There are stickers or patches that can perform continuous measurements. There's also research going on a breathalyzer that is supposed to give a reading based on breath acetone levels (?).

These may not be readily available, like walk-in-to-a-store-now available, but nonetheless, they are interesting, at least in that "does that actually work" kind of way... Can't see any quotes on prices and that's what it comes down to in the end anyways.

And sorry if I end up only spreading vague information or speculation. I did check a Google patent application and the university that does the research. The rest were collected from an article and I've heard of some of them before. I'm still critical until I see one of these in action and it's tested and proved working.

Post Edited (Chaul22) : 7/31/2016 1:27:18 PM (GMT-6)


MusicForLife
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Date Joined Nov 2014
Total Posts : 380
   Posted 8/1/2016 7:53 AM (GMT -6)   
Wow! The future is now, apparently. Or at least (hopefully) soon!
That's crazy that soon, hopefully we'll all be able to get our readings from our ears (!) or even our breath!
You're right, though, it'll all come down to cost for us. It'd be great to have a painless way of doing it, but not the cost of an arm and a leg.

msOuchie
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2011
Total Posts : 453
   Posted 8/1/2016 7:04 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi:

I got my first blood tester(Ames Glucometer) 30 yrs ago. I was excited since my hubby and I sometimes disagreed on the Chemstrip results. Plus I got it free from answering a newspaper ad.
I just had to try it and answer a few questions, then I owned it. They cost $250. back then.

It was suggested that I use the sides of my fingers but I eventually ended poking all of my fingers
where ever I could find a spot on each of them, even near my first knuckles. It has been 30 years after all. I use the second drop of blood if I can get one, not the first. I prefer my thumbs and pinkies. Lots of blood unless my hands are cold. I have had secondary Raynauds also for about 30 years. In the beginning I was testing 4 times a day, then years later 6 times a day. Now I test 8 - 10 a day, I'm guessing for about 6 or 7 years. All the fingers are the same accuracy-wise but the arms and palms are not near as accurate.

I'm not sure what scabs you are talking about but I do get small areas of dried skin from poking which sometimes catches on certain materials especially microfibre. I file the skin off with a clean nail file every few nights and put vaseline on them overnight to keep them feeling normal. I also use warm bean bags, holding them under warm water, rubbng them quickly, letting them hang down for a while as mentioned or holding them over a heat source for better blood flow. I did have one callous on my thumb, so I stopped using that spot and kept filing and using vaseline until it disappeared.

I don't recommend using your finger pads(as I have) since in my experience, my fingerprints are wrecked(okay great if you're a criminal :) ) plus the grips on my fingers are pretty well gone, so it's hard to hang on to things as easily. Mind you I've tested a lot, as mentioned. I'm still waiting for that
non-invasive testing system.......or a cure. :)
Type 1 Diabetes - Severe Rheumatoid Arthritis(RA) - Asthma - Hypounawareness - secondary Raynauds - Osteoarthritis - other stuff

Coversyl - Pantoloc(as irritation preventative) - Levemir - Indomethacin - Morphine - Salbutamol - Prednisone - Humalog - Xeljanz - Refresh Ultra - Aspirin(81 mgs.) - Cod Liver Oil Caps - Vit D other OTC

Post Edited (msOuchie) : 8/1/2016 7:07:03 PM (GMT-6)


Lanie G
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Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 5915
   Posted 8/1/2016 7:48 PM (GMT -6)   
As a type 1, I'm sure you're testing a lot during the day. Will C hasn't been around lately but he's on a pump now and I wonder how he likes it. No finger testing with that!

msOuchie, you've seen a lot of history with testing with that first meter! I don't think the average diabetic used them 30 years ago! Wow!
Lanie

diabetes moderator
diabetes type 2 controlled by diet and exercise and
metformin
very low carb way of eating

msOuchie
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2011
Total Posts : 453
   Posted 8/1/2016 10:47 PM (GMT -6)   
Ya, I hope that Will is doing okay. He seemed happy with his pump, far as I recall.
Will still has to test his blood sugar by using a blood glucose meter. A pump is another
type of insulin delivery system that you change the infusion site every 2 - 3 days, so you
do not need to inject as frequently.

The Continuous Glucose Monitor System(CGMS) is the device used to test blood glucose.
You still need to test with a meter but not as often as before since they have gotten
somewhat more accurate. There is still a delay though. The needle is injected into the
body and stays there for a week. You can look at it anytime to see what your blood
glucose is and whether it is rising or falling. Cool! Many Diabetics restart it to make it
last for 2 weeks since the sensors cost quite a bit.

You are right, that a few newer pumps are combined with the CGMS. I do not know if
Will has that type of pump.

Oh goodness Lanie, I'm not sure what you mean by average, lots of Diabetics have had
glucose meters as long as I have, some even longer. We are living a longer life now
because of the net, devices, carb counting and understanding Diabetes and how it affects
us much better. Dr. Bernstein had a home glucose testing meter back in 1969, I believe.
He was able to get it because of his wife. Lucky ducky! I started with the urine tests in
1961, the Chemstrips in 1979, then the Glucose meter in 1987(although it took 2 minutes
for the result).
Type 1 Diabetes - Severe Rheumatoid Arthritis(RA) - Asthma - Hypounawareness - secondary Raynauds - Osteoarthritis - other stuff

Coversyl - Pantoloc(as irritation preventative) - Levemir - Indomethacin - Morphine - Salbutamol - Prednisone - Humalog - Xeljanz - Refresh Ultra - Aspirin(81 mgs.) - Cod Liver Oil Caps - Vit D other OTC

Chaul22
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2010
Total Posts : 204
   Posted 8/2/2016 5:27 AM (GMT -6)   
Speaking of the delay of CGMS. I had to go an unannounced meeting that got extended to few hours so that it lasted the whole afternoon. I'm wearing this device. First this other guy offers a very sweet large cookie but I tell him no thanks. I had just eaten lunch, taken my insulin and my blood glucose was actually a bit high. So, the meeting goes on for 2-3 hours and I feel the monitor vibrate as the first warning. I didn't believe it to be that low and thought the meeting should be ending soon. It wouldn't be ending in another hour, and the darn thing now beeps loudly announcing its existence. I tell the guy "hmm, ok, maybe I could take one of your cookies now". I start checking the graph on the monitor under the table but it has flatlined because it couldn't measure any lower. After 15 minutes it was still flatlining and I eat another one of those syrup-filled cookies. In the end that flatline stretched to a full hour until it spiked up.

My assumption is that this was a result of a temporary mis-calibration and my blood glucose indeed being a bit low. The sensor does have a bit of delay and I think it only measured once every few minutes anyways.

I've been a diabetic since year 1988. I have stopped counting the years.

Lanie G
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Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 5915
   Posted 8/2/2016 5:49 AM (GMT -6)   
And this is why you should carry glucose tablets with you! I hope the people you work with know that you're diabetic just in case you "flatline" on the floor! omg
Lanie

diabetes moderator
diabetes type 2 controlled by diet and exercise and
metformin
very low carb way of eating

MusicForLife
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2014
Total Posts : 380
   Posted 8/2/2016 8:05 AM (GMT -6)   
msOuchie said...


I'm not sure what scabs you are talking about but I do get small areas of dried skin from poking which sometimes catches on certain materials especially microfibre.
I'm still waiting for that
non-invasive testing system.......or a cure. :)


Hi! I'm not entirely sure what to call those little things, but they do remind me of scabs: little spots of bloody skin. I dry my finger completely after I poke so I don't understand why I get them. Especially because I use the lowest setting on my lancet.

Right on! We can only hope that one day, somehow, a cure can be found.

jujub
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   Posted 8/2/2016 9:28 AM (GMT -6)   
cookies, even super-sweet ones, are mostly complex carbs. These are digested and metabolized by your body much more slowly than simple carbs such as glucose or other sugars. Thus the preference for glucose tablets or, if you don't have that, fruit juice or hard candy.
Thyroid forum moderator

Ulcerative colitis; 10thyear of remission with Remicade. Inflammatory osteoarthritis; osteonecrosis from steroids. Grave's disease post-RAI and now on Levothyroxine. Type II diabetes induced by steroids. #ucsucks

Chaul22
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Date Joined May 2010
Total Posts : 204
   Posted 8/3/2016 10:30 AM (GMT -6)   
LanieG said...
And this is why you should carry glucose tablets with you! I hope the people you work with know that you're diabetic just in case you "flatline" on the floor! omg

Sure they do, but this was a meeting with someone from another company accompanied with only a few internals. It was also a surprise meeting to me, practically pulled in on my way back to my desk. I don't usually carry the glucose tabs in my jean pockets but I have them in my backpack or coat. In this case I simply didn't have them with me and had to settle with this syrup filled cookie. I considered that cookie somewhere in the middle with regards to absorption rate so I knew it was going to take several minutes.

However, as usual, I overshoot a little and soon end up high after a low.. And the monitor was still beeping low after 15 minutes or so even though I was feeling more or less fine already. After a hypo like that you usually have this wonky feeling for a while, but I was mostly ok, which leads me to believe it was mostly the mis-calibration.

I met with a nurse today and she told me that these monitors can be off by a large margin (5 mmol/l) with both low and high readings. She had tested the device on herself (non-diabetic) and it beeped low on her too which was definitely not the case. She told me of a long-distance runner who had to step out of a race because of high readings but the runners bgl were not high when checked with a blood glucose meter... In conclusion, her advice is to always double-check both highs and lows with a meter. However, I also didn't have a meter with me. Safer to just take a bite of something sweet but my problem still is - how much?

Lanie G
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Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 5915
   Posted 8/3/2016 10:59 AM (GMT -6)   
Ah! Right. Now I'm wondering if those monitors are worth having.
Lanie

diabetes moderator
diabetes type 2 controlled by diet and exercise and
metformin
very low carb way of eating
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