Why Should I Test My Blood Glucose?

In our Facebook group, we recently had a discussion about diabetics who don’t test their blood sugar at home with their glucose meter. One member suggested some reasons, er, excuses used by diabetics.

I know people who don’t test often because they’re not making any changes based on their test results so they don’t see the sense of it.

The “sense” in testing often is to know how you are doing! The only time that it’s safe to test less often “because the test results are always the same” is if/when your A1C is 4.0-5.6%, which is a non-diabetic normal. Even then, you should still get an A1C every year (perhaps with your yearly physical), and still test occasionally at home with your glucose meter.

Others see little variation from day to day so get to the point where they think they don’t need to test every day.

Again, the only time you can test less frequently is when your “little variation from day to day” is within a non-diabetic normal range of 70-99mg/dL (3.9-5.6 mmol/l).

Also, some doctors are better than others. My husband’s internist thinks frequent low blood sugars are a problem; his endocrinologist doesn’t seem to think it’s a big deal.

This is common. Doctors, across the board, are much more concerned about possible death from low blood sugar than they are about the long-range complications of diabetes from a prolonged elevated blood glucose. That’s because if a patient dies from low blood sugar, the doctor, clinic, and entire medical group could be sued! If a patient dies of kidney failure, stroke, or heart attack (due to complications of diabetes), the death is not attributed to the high blood sugars of uncontrolled diabetes. The internist is keenly aware of this! The endocrinologist, on the other hand, is much more fine-tuned to the individual patient’s condition and circumstances, and would not be so worried about occasional low blood sugars.

For more information about blood glucose, see this resource:


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