Any ideas to save finger tips?

Hi Everyone, I am looking for ideas (if any) to save my daughters finger tips…she tests allot and her fingers are so calloused she can hardly get blood sometimes.

Ouch! I test a lot and don’t seem to develop callouses. Maybe it’s the type of lancet she’s using? I always buy the BD Ultra Fine II lancets, 33G. I think they’re the smallest ones out there. they tend to hurt less and give me a better blood sample than a lot of the other ones. Good luck!

We are using the Bayer Microlet lancets…the box doesnt give me a size? thanks for the advice! I will see if I can get some lancets with a smaller needle :slight_smile:

Well, I don’t actually use my fingertips, I use the sides of my fingertips. And I have deeply calloused hands, not from lancing tho. You can build up callouses from sports and things like that. I do have to set the lance up to 5-6 at times. Try the sides.


Well, from experience, lancets DO make a difference. Just like syringes, lancets have different gauges and lengths. I recommend the Accu-Chek Softclix Lancet Device. Their needles feel much better any i’ve used so far. Also socking your hands in Palmolive to try and soften your fingertips. If your callous is really bad, ask your doctor if it’s ok to see a pedicurist. Pedicurist sometimes have special machines to take of callous. Make sure that you are changing your lancets at least once every two weeks… Lastly, use a meter that allows you to do alternative testing. This will give your fingers a rest…

I think calluses are just something diabetics have to get used to. I’m actually glad I have the calluses, because pricks on calluses hurt a great deal less than pricks on regular skin. They work to protect me. Sure, I sometimes have to prick a finger 10 times before I get blood, but that doesn’t happen that often, and I usually don’t feel it. I guess I just don’t see why you’d want to save her fingertips? The calluses don’t hurt; they’ve never gotten in my way. People rarely notice them, and, if they do ask, they’re satisfied with as much or as little information as I’m willing to give. Do they bother your daughter?

I use a different finger each day. ( Not the thumbs.) This way each finger gets 7 days “rest.” Test on the sides and be sure the finger is warm, it will bleed better. ( I am sure you know this.)

Calluses generally form as a result of testing too many times in one particular area, or reusing a dull needle. Dull needles causes busing. the extra layer of skin comes from the body trying to protect itself (over healing).

The reusing the dull needle I think is pretty key too in addition to the guage of the lancet. For me personally, I’d take callouses over changing the lancet every time I test…but that was my choice :slight_smile: (and not made by my parents when I was younger)

Make sure she doesn’t use the same few fingers all the time. We all tend to do this because some fingers are more cooperative. Washing hands in really warm water before testing helps get the blood flowing.

I’ve found that the pads of my fingers don’t develop callouses… and the Acc-check Multiclix has pretty darn small lancets in it… easily the smallest i’ve ever seen.

I’m also a huge fan of the accu-check lancet. I’ve also read that not using alcohol swabs after testing helps in not getting callouses (i don’t use them, and am not very calloused). Definitely vary the site (not just switching fingers but use each side of each finger) and figure out the absolute lowest setting on the lancet you can still get blood.

The sample size your meter needs makes a big difference too. When I used to accu-check aviva, I needed WAY more blood (and wasted a lot more strips) than I do now with a Freestyle meter. It only takes a tiny little drop, which helps my fingers a lot.

Gold Bond Ultimate: softening skin therapy lotion (with Shea Butter!) I put it on every night before bed… love it! (great for feet too)

I cannot find a reason NOT to use every single finger… thumbs included + each side = 20 different sites. Switch finger and side after every test.

I don’t have callouses but I do test alot also. Like someone said I use the side of my fingers and thumbs maybe that’s why I have no callouses. I do have problems getting blood so for many years I’ve been using a rubber band wrapped around my finger for testing. Using the band helps to get blood to the top of finger.

Hey Betty, using a rubber band is innovative, I’ve would have never thought of that!! Fortunately for me, once I’ve got the hang of it, I never had problems again. However, I do notice during the Summer, I can’t do alternative testing, because my blood becomes too thin. It appears that it is best for me to test mostly on my fingers during very hot climates…

Maybe I’m the only person out there that does this, but I test on either my forearm or leg. The only time I test on my fingers are if I want a “more accurate” result - like if I think I might be low or if I’m treating a low. Call me crazy, but my fingers are in good shape.

I assume you do mean sides of fingers, not tip.
Monday - thumbs
Tuesday - 1st finger
Wednesday - 2nd finger
…and so on.
weekends are whatever finger gets in the way of the lancet device. This has helped me a lot, I found I was always abusing the same finger(s). I also try to go back/forth between left and right hands and inside/outside of finger sort of randomly.
A few years ago my Endo told me to start trying my earlobes. I didn’t, too awkward. I’ve also heard stories of using toes -again, too awkward for me.

I use an Emory board to sand down the callous, and adjust the location of the lancet.

We use BD ultrafine 33 gauge lancets. There are smaller lancets on the market you can order called Tiniboy from You could try those. We use Vasaline occasionally and sqeeze out Vitamin E oil from the capsules. I think the Vitamin E oil works well for healing purposes; Vasaline will soften the skin. We do not use Vasaline and Vitamin E at the same time.

I can’t take the credit for that trick years ago my educator showed me that trick…someone had showed him.