What's your backup meter?

So, just a general question because I’m curious really - but what is everyone currently using as their “backup” meter? I’m currently trying to decide which one I want to use.

At present I’m using the OneTouch UltraMini but I’m debating switching it up with a different brand so that it’s easier to eliminate bad test strips should I ever have an issue - what are your thoughts?

For me it’s exactly the same brand and model as my main meter. And the backup meter has its own little cache of test strips (what use would a backup meter be without test strips? :slight_smile: ).

Mostly it’s a matter of my insurance only covering one test script prescription at a time. I do not have any distrust of the brand like you do.

If I had to choose a second meter brand because I didn’t trust my primary meter brand, I would choose a cheap-o store brand of meter with cheap test strips. Note how “cheap” figures in prominently.

I was using the Ultra Mini, and I liked it but I was getting frustrated with the amount of Bad test stips I kept getting. Too many times they weren’t cut properly so I could not use them. My Endo actually recommended the Bayer Contour USB meter, which I like a LOT! Great Colour display on it, and I love the fact that it’s a USB device so you can just recharge it and not have to worry about batteries (the charge seems to last a long time too which is great). Another nice feature is that because it’s a USB device, the software is actually built into the meter so all you have to do is plug it into the Doctor’s computer, and they can see all the Information (Which is why she recommened it :slight_smile: )

As for a backup meter, I always get the same as my primary so I don’t have to worry about different test strips expiring if I ever need them.

It’s not that I distrust the brand. I currently use the Animas Ping insulin pump so my primary meter is the new version of the Ping remote - which is great. I’ve been carrying around the UltraMini as a backup because it uses the same strips, but I’ve been seeing a lot of people commenting about how they’ve had bad batches of test strips and I just don’t want to end up stuck one day because I didn’t think to pack a different brand.

I tend to travel a fair bit, both in Canada and around the world (just last year was UK (twice), Cuba, New York, Calgary, Edmonton, Dublin, etc.) so I want to make sure I’m staying as prepared as possible. :slight_smile:

Thanks for the input Tim!

I was actually reading your comment on that just the other day and was thinking to myself how fortunate I’ve been because over the last 2 years I’ve never had a bad batch of OneTouch test strips knock on wood.

I’ve placed orders for the Accu-Chek Nano, and the Bayer Contour USB so that I can test them out - aside from the OneTouch those two seem to be among the most commented on, plus I’ve always wanted to check out the Bayer Contour USB I just refused to have to pay for something in Canada that is offered for free to Americans.

Do you have a Diatbetic Clinic by you? I go to one at the local hospital here in Ottawa and they have all the meters so you can try them out, and they let you take them, as they get them for free. The companies know that they get their money back and then some when we start buying the darn strips for the things!

Yeah, I’m right near the “Charles H. Best Diabetes Center” - the staff there are phenominal. Perhaps I will check with them to see - thanks for the idea. :slight_smile:

I used the Accu-chek pretty much since diagnosis and liked it a lot. I never could relate when people talked about inaccuracies because it always seemed to reflect what I expected and if I happened to check it fifteen minutes later it was right where it should be. I too switched to the One Touch when I got my Ping. I don’t feel the need for a back-up and gave my Accu-chek to another TuD member in a test strip exchange that worked for us both. I think you’ll like the Accu-chek. Aside from accuracy I had a couple things I think it’s better than the One Touch for: it’s not “upside down” like the one touch ping. The strips are larger and easier to get out of the container and a container holds 50 not 25 like the ping strips. Also if you haven’t applied enough blood it pauses before cycling allowing you a chance to quickly add more blood. I never had any problems at all with bad test strips.

Back up is good, especially if you travel, though when I moved to Guatemala I found my Accu-chek was useless as you couldn’t get strips there and had to buy a Contour (which I liked just fine). Just as long as you don’t get caught up in comparing them as some people seem to drive themselves nuts doing that! I alternated the Accu-chek and Contour in Guatemala, using the Accu-chek when I got to the states and got some strips, but basically put the back-up away.

since I have a ping I use one touch strips–to make it easy–all my backup meters (save a few I’ve been sent that do not have strips as the few they came with gone or exp)

I have and Ultra minin in the bathroom and one that stays in my purse. I have a one touch ultra at work and a spare in my packed emergency supplies ( in case of evacuation due to fire/flood/ earthquake etc)

I check every quarter along with epi-pens and glucagon for expiry

I also have a precision extra meter (and back up) for cheking keytones

My backup meter is a Bayer Countour (spelling might be off), and so far, I’ve not had any problems with it.

I used the Precision Xtra for keytones as well, but it isn’t very convenient to use for checking blood sugars because of how they pack their test strips and the amount of blood they require!

The Accucheck Aviva is my primary and the Freestyle that came with my Omnipod starter kit are secondary, mainly because my insurance will cover the Aviva strips, but not the Freestlye strips. I use my Omnipod as a back-up back-up now, mostly if I’m out and about with friends and don’t want the hassle of carrying a standalone meter around.

I’d say I use my Aviva 75% of the time and the Freestyle/Omnipod the rest of the time. Accuracy between the Aviva and Freestyle doesn’t seem to be much of an issue. Most of the time they are with 5% or better of each other, with neither trending higher or lower than the other. If I felt like hassling with the insurance company, I’d go with the Freestyle as a primary because of the smaller sample requirement and they haev a slightly higher out of pocket expense than the Accucheck.

I have one and only one meter – One Touch that came with my first pump 12 years ago. Works fine.

I use the USB meter by Bayer and my backup meter is a Bayer USB also. Don’t leasve home without it.

I’ve got 2. One is the same as my main meter. This proved useful when the battery in my main meter died. I was able to just start using the backup and was able to download the readings from my spare to my computer with no muss or fuss. This would also help if your main meter died permanently.

I also have a backup of a different brand to help me troubleshoot aberrant readings. I have used free meter deals to acquire these meters, so cost is really not a factor.

Right now my main meter is the Contour USB, because it has a really easy-to-read screen.

My backup meter, which I keep with one vial of strips, is a Freestyle Lite. My backup meter isn’t so much in case I don’t trust my main meter, it’s kept in my emergency kit that’s at my house in case of an earthquake or other disaster. I should check to make sure the strips aren’t expired, actually, as it’s been a while since I used it.

I also have a Precision Xtra which I keep in my purse with ketone strips. If I bought glucose strips for it, it could also become a backup meter.

I’m soon switching to the Ping so when I do that will be my main meter and the Contour USB will probably become my backup meter.

I use my One touch ultra link as my main meter and the ultra mini as my back up. I do have the bayer contour too so if I had a Q about my test strips I could run it by that meter but have not used it in forever.

I hate it when that happens! (The test strips expire)

At one point I was given so much supplies that I couldn’t possibly use all the strips provided so I set them aside and pretty much forgot about them, until one day when I found them and realized they had all expired… such a waste.

Now I try to keep more on top of the expiration dates and give the strips to some other Diabetics around me. At least that way they’re used up. Fortunately my insurance eats the cost of these things like there is no tomorrow. :slight_smile:

I hearing a lot of good things about the Bayer USB meter! lol

I just checked and the strips expire on February 2012. I think I’ll try and use them up before that.

I only get a certain number of strips covered per month by the province, and so it’s very rare that I have extra. The only way I get extra is either to buy an extra vial out-of-pocket, or if I happen to not test as often that month, which is how I saved up the extra vial of Freestyle strips.