Different readings at different test sites, which one to use

I have found different readings of BG's

1. From right and Left hand and forearms.

2. Right and Left palms.

3. Right and Left fingers

I can test right after each other in the above areas and BG's run from highest on forearm to lowest at fingers. Why allow multiple testing when you are going to take the lowest reading? Do the companies of the meters really believe all consumers are stupid? Even testing the right and left fingers on the hands, you are going to use the lowest. If you are using a scale for coverage why increase your Insulin to the highest reading.

I ask these questions to an Endo and got know answer. I am beginning to believe THEY think we are STUPID. how do you feel?


Hey Chele. I agree it is frustrating. But you need to understand the reality, which is that the FDA only requires meters be +/- 20% accurate (i.e. if actual BG is 200, a reading of 161 is considered ‘accurate’, as is a reading of 239 … for the SAME blood sample). Now in the light of that knowledge, you would expect to get slightly different readings even if you tested at the same site! Having said all that, the thing to remember is that glucose readings are only a tool for you or your doctor to use … the individual readings are not important in themselves; their significance is only that they help you understand what’s going on in your body, and give you information so you can develop your best plan to deal with your diabetes.
Information is power my friend, even if its vague and frustrating information.

J Blue
I understand what you are saying, but if you are on a sliding scale are you getting the right dosage. Could Hypo be a side effect of the readings, by not having the right coverage?


Chele, yes, a hypo could be a side effect of the readings being less than 100% accurate. That is what makes the FDA rules so stupid! Add to that the fact that your body is not a ‘machine’ (so different hormone levels at different times etc), and food labels don’t always get the amount of carbs right, and you begin to realize how difficult getting blood glucose under control and avoiding hypos really is!
My point is that this stuff is difficult … but testing often, using a good quality meter (like Contour USB etc) and looking for trends in your overall readings is the best way to go. We can’t control what happens to us in life, but we can choose our response, and we can try our best to live our best life possible.
You sound like you have the right 'tude for making it.
Best of luck.

I struggled with this a few years. In the end, I stuck with my old stand by of “Don’t worry about what I can’t fix.” I’m on a sliding scale as well. For the most part, if I pay attention to my numbers, the usually slight deferences don’t make that much of a difference. The end goal is always my A1C. I also have a tendency to lean to the higher numbers as I tend have high blood sugar. I could use a few lows so I don’t mind over dosing so much. That sounds bad, doesn’t it. Oh well. It’s the truth. I would rather have a 61 than a 161 because my A1C is so high I can smell the sugar in my blood (slight exaggeration).

Frizbian…Got it.
It is just that in alternate testing, there is such a big difference in the numbers:i.e. forearm and fingers, right from left. When your on a sliding scale, hypo can be easily induced by the wrong dosage and the brain reacts to these lows. So isn’t the right dosage important ?


Your technique may be a factor. It used to take several min. to get a reading. Now as little as 5 sec. different calculating math on much smaller drops of blood. How much you need to pinch the site to get a DOB can and will have an impact on the meter reading. My experience, Working hard to get a drop and then retesting with a higher setting stick to test and a larger and easy drop i have seen a different # of as much as 50 or more points in less then a min from the same finger.


DId not realize how old this post is but info is still valid
Toby in New York