I am looking for a lo-cost glucose monitoring method. So have been going back and looking at urine glucose monitoring. Its not perfect – but in a situation where there is no PBS and there is no possibility of doing frequent blood glucose tests – this is an option.
So I have begun looking at alternate ways of testing urine glucose. A reusable method would be great.
Limitations of urine glucose monitoring
If monitoring your diabetes control by testing your urine glucose, it’s important to understand the limitations of this method.
* A urine glucose test does not reflect your blood glucose level at the time of testing; instead, it gives an indication of your blood glucose level over the past several hours. For example, some of the urine present in your bladder may be 2 hours old, and may show glucose even though your blood glucose may have normalised since then. Compare this to a blood glucose test which gives you a reading of your current blood glucose level.
* A urine glucose test does not give you any information about low blood glucose levels, as glucose is only found in the urine when the blood glucose level is above 10 mmol/L. That is, a negative urine glucose test may be the result of a normal blood glucose level or a dangerously low blood glucose level, with the urine glucose test unable to differentiate between the 2 situations.
* The results of a urine glucose test are influenced by the volume and concentration of urine that you pass, which will vary with the amount of fluid you consume and your fluid loss due to such things as heavy sweating or vomiting.
* Urine glucose tests designed for home use rely on interpreting a colour change to define the result. Subtle colour differences may be difficult to interpret.
* If a urine glucose test is not read at the specified time after applying the urine to the test strip, then the result is prone to error.
* Some medications may interfere with the results of urine glucose testing.
Advantages of urine glucose monitoring
* Urine glucose testing is easy to do: just dip the test strip in the urine and read the result at the allocated time.
* It is less painful than blood glucose monitoring — no finger pricks to collect blood!
* Urine test strips are less costly than buying a blood glucose monitor and its test strips.