Error Messages When Testing Blood Sugar Levels

Error messageNothing frustrates me more than getting an error message after applying blood to the test strip in the glucometer. These error messages seem way too frequent. Sometimes the blood stops half way. Sometimes there isn’t enough blood. Sometimes the meter has timed out, or the meter is still on the code screen. Sometimes my younger daughter doesn’t have the dexterity to line up the test strip to the blood drop on her finger. This was a particularly difficult issue when she was a toddler in the “I do it” stage. She would insist on doing it herself, but without the physical ability, a lot of test strips went to waste. The other day she got several error messages in a row and then refused to test again. I don’t blame her. I’ve gotten so many error messages over time, easily in the thousands when you think of all the blood sugar testing we’ve done over the years, and many times we’ve gotten several in a row. Grrr!

Once when we were at the endocrinologist’s office getting prescriptions at our visit, the nurse (or perhaps she was an aide) who had T1D herself asked why we tested so often after I said we tested blood sugar levels 8-10 times a day. I explained we test in the morning, before snack, before lunch, before the bus ride home from school, before sports, sometimes during sports, after sports, before dinner, before bed, if feeling low or high, and during the night. We don’t even test as much as is recommended such as at times after treating a low blood sugar: in that situation, we usually don’t test again 15 minutes later after it’s been treated (unless it’s a severe low blood sugar). Plus we need extra test strips for the nurse’s office, and for all those error messages, of course!

Disclosure: I have no financial interest in any diabetes company and have received no money or gifts to write this blog post. Please keep in mind that these are just my juicy experiences and opinions, and my experiences will vary from someone else’s.