Just checked accuracy of 17 year old test strips

I found a stash of old meters and with them was a vial of FastTake strips, expired in 8/2001. Popped in some new 357 batteries into a FastTake meter, tested and the result?


Test on trusty Contour Next One. 110.

I expected the old strips to read very very low, but what do I know?


I tried some Freestyle Precision strips that expired in 2014. They could give the general ballpark of my blood sugar, but were often off by more than 1 mmol/L.


I don’t remember the brand, but in the 1990s, I had strips that you could compare against the color bands on the bottle to get an approximate range for. I distinctly remember that those included horseradish as an active ingredient. It always struck me as odd.

Chemstrip bG? that’s what I used (from about 1980) until I got my first meter (using the same strips) in 1992.



that’s what I used for many years. I jabbed my fingers without the aid of the pen-style lancet devices. That hurt a lot because there was no fast retraction of the lancet.

You could also use those with the AccuCheck. That was my first meter, in 1986

My first meter was a Life Scan One Touch II. It sure used a lot of blood. My next bunch of meters were all life scans. The profile, fast take, Ultra, Ultra 2,mini.

My experience that old test strips are like poorly stored strips and have “absorbed humidity” and tend to read high. But not based on any baseline as long as your 17 years!

I do occasionally find Chemstrips I used as bookmarks or in bottom of boxes from 30-35 years ago. Been a long time since I found a old urine test strep or the fuzzy Ames glucose strips from before the Chemstrip era.

I bet today’s Contour strips would last 17 years. I might even save a 10 strip bottle till 2035 to find out.


I’ve often wondered if the type of strips that are used nowadays would last a lot longer than the old paper type. Logically, they would last better but that’s just a guess