GLUCOMETER IN ESTIMATING GLYCAEMIC LEVELS

Author(s): 
ALP SENEVIRATNE 1, PCS PERERA 1, M SENANAYAKE 1
1 University of Sri Jayawardenapura, Sri Lanka
Text: 
BACKGROUND: Good glycaemic control is proved to prevent and delay microvascular and macrovascular complications of Diabetes Mellitus.(DM) The study aims to identify the reliability of a freely available cost effective glucometer in Sri Lanka.
OBJECTIVES: To assess the reliability of fasting capillary glucose values obtained by glucometer in screening for diabetes and to identify the glycaemic control in a known diabetic.
METHOD: Cross sectional descriptive analytic study in patients attending a sub-urban family practice diabetic clinic in Sri Lanka. Fasting blood sugar was estimated by using a calibrated glucometer with exact tech. After explaining and obtaining patients consent a venous blood sample was drawn into a 2.5 cc disposable syringe and placed in a sugar bottle and dispatched to a reference laboratory for venous plasma glucose estimation.
RESULTS: There were 105 patients with diabetes. Patients without history of diabetes that consisted the screen group were 38. Blood sugar levels ranged from 61mg to 290mg. The blood sugar values of the samples was divided into 4 groups depending on the glucometer reading. They were 180mg. The gold standard in estimating patients with impaired fasting plasma glucose was 100mg/dl. These groups when compared with venous plasma showed a statistical positive correlation.
The blood sugar values of the screened group to establish impaired plasma glucose and DM showed a high sensitivity (95%) and moderate specificity (66%).
CONCLUSIONS: Glucometer is a reliable instrument in deciding glycaemic control. It has a high sensitivity in detecting patients with diabetes but specificity is less.