A reader sent a mail asking about the best brand of glucometer, cost, where to buy glucometer and how to use it to check for random and fasting blood sugar.

Read below…..

Good morning Doctor, my dad, 46 years, was diagnosed of diabetes 3 years ago by the Endocrinologist and has been on his medications-metformin and dianil. He never misses his drugs and he has been alright. But there was a problem, we didn’t buy the glucometer recommended for him by his doctors. He was told to buy a glucometer to enable him check his sugar daily before food, drugs and any time he feels funny.

We didn’t buy but he was taking his meds quite religiously. The only time he checks his sugar is only when he goes for his routine clinic visit for follow-up. He has to check his fasting blood sugar or sometimes random blood sugar before seeing the doctor. He does not keep a sugar test book as other diabetics do despite repeated pleas from his doctor. We thought the “sugar machine” is expensive and will be difficult to operate.

Doc, recently my dad complained of slight headache and suddenly went into coma and was rushed to the hospital, his random blood sugar checked in the medical emergency was 605mg/dl and was commenced on treatment. The doctor told us he had a diabetic crisis called DKA. We initially thought it was stroke. We thought the stories that blood glucose level could be unpredictable was made up to scare us. Thank God he survived it. We spent about 3 weeks on admission. We learnt our lessons though in a hard way.

I want to buy glucometer for my father. I want have surfed the internet on the types of glucometer and their prices. I am not impressed with what i am seeing. The prices are high and they seem difficult to operate. I want a glucometer that is cheap, easy to operate, simple, reliable, have a long battery life, and comes with plenty strips. Also, I want a glucometer that the strips can easily be refilled or replaced when it gets exhausted. Can i get one in Nigeria? Help me with a name please. Thank you.


My reply…

I am glad to know you father survived Diabetic Ketoacidosis (DKA). It could be a fatal complication of diabetes milletus. I am also happy you know where the problem came from- poor routine sugar check arising from having no glucometer.

There are different types of glucometer. In Nigeria, Accu-check is the most popular. Most diabetics prefer it because it is easy to use, cheap, has long battery life, and it gives reliable and accurate results. Also, it is available in most pharmacies across Nigeria and online supermarkets like Jumia, Konga, Alibaba and so on. The strips are refillable or replaceable when they get exhausted or finished.
The pack of Accu-Check glucometer comes with the machine, a container containing 50 test strips, lancets for piercing the finger and sometimes cotton wool already impregnated with alcohol or spirit for cleaning the thumb before piercing. Both the strips and the lancet can get exhausted and can be refilled.

The price of Accu-Check glucometer pack is around #11,000 to #13,000 naira. The strips cost about #5,000 to refill and lancet price is about #1,000 naira. The strips are coded 333 and can be used for only and any Accu-Check glucometer. Also ensure you change the battery at interval. Accu-Check battery price is about #200 naira.When it gets bad, most times it is the battery so always check. When the battery is weak it will give inaccurate and unreliable results.

Please work into any pharmacy shop near you and get one for your father today. Educate him and other family members with examples on the how to use the glucometer. His doctors can also teach him.

I hope you find this helpful. Thank you.


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