Anyone with Arthritis & Diabetes?

By MissPuff Latest Reply 2011-07-01 15:49:48 -0500
Started 2011-06-28 22:20:17 -0500

I have Type 2. In addition, I have arthritis, FMS & CPS. I use the Freestyle Lite tester, promoted as the easiest & most pain-free tester there is. However every time I go to test myself, I press on the button & press & press & I can't get it to release. I don't know if it is the arthritis, the FMS or the CPS or all 3 working together against me, but I just don't have the strength to press the button hard enough. Once in a while I have no trouble, but most of the time I just don't seem to have the strength. I will try for 5 - 10 mins until my hand cramps & I just have to put it down. At first I thought it was just fear of the needle & I would distract myself while still pressing on the button. I just don't have the strength. Does anyone else have this problem?


25 replies

Graylin Bee
Graylin Bee 2011-07-01 15:22:46 -0500 Report

Of my four different lancing devices the ReliOn seems to take the least pressure to trigger. It seems the easiest to remove the cap and remove lancet. The Bayer Contour takes more torque to get the lancet removed and more pressure to get the lancet to prick my finger. My other two are from Walgreens testers and are about the same to push for testing as the Contour but easier to remove the lancet. I threw away the Target lancing device because sometimes it would stick in my finger and not retract (ouch) like a harpoon. Sometimes I have problems because my ulnar tendons are screwed up and do not have much strength if I overdo and stress them.

Raybie 2011-07-01 06:30:14 -0500 Report

I too have type 2, OA, and pseudo gout too. It's on my spine, ankle, knees and hands. I've had it so long how I mostly ignore it. My Dad always said to, "Just Grin and Bear it". The hardest one is the back. I cannot stand up for any length of time and walking is very painful.

Hops 2011-07-01 07:01:05 -0500 Report

Twenty years ago I started taking glucosamine chondroiton to relieve the pain. At 57 I stay active and enjoy walking at least five miles a day. Stretching and Yoga are a great help.

Somoca 2011-07-01 15:06:29 -0500 Report

I was taking rosehip for my arthritis but I ran out. My knees realized it really quick.

MissPuff 2011-07-01 15:49:48 -0500 Report

I'll have to ask my doctor & pharmacist about that one. I'm on several Rx's & have to be careful about adding herbs & supplements. For example, most people think St. John's Wart would be good for depression part of bipolar, but it is very dangerous for bipolar. My doctor did put me on Calcium + Vitamin D several years ago because she saw my bones were starting to deteriorate, decalcify, whatever the word is, getting tiny holes in them, so she said the calcium would put off bone fractures.

I've heard great things about the glucosamine chondroiton, at least for some people. My doctor hasn't recommended it for me though. But, I'll ask my rheumatologist when I see him in 2 weeks. I got my new lancet today. Since I've already tested twice today, I won't use it until tomorrow, so I will find out then if it will be easier.

Thanks for the suggestions.

Somoca 2011-07-01 05:43:20 -0500 Report

OH MY GOODNESS YES. Arth in my knees so it makes it hard to walk to the bus for work. Mornings are the worst, I cry then I keep moving. I can handle the diabetes a lot better than I can the arthritis.

TrueBeliever 2011-07-01 01:29:10 -0500 Report

Hi Sheila! I have the combination of OA and Diabetes. I do have quite a bit of trouble with the fingers of my right hand. I use a different tester, (One Touch Ultra) but when I was first diagnosed I got a Freestyle from the pharmacy. I don't even know why One Touch sent me their set but the lancet was so much easier for me to use that I switched for that reason alone. It also really helps to get everything set up, cocked and ready to go. I also have to have the lancet device set at 4(of 5). Good luck! I hope this has helped.

Patty johnson
Patty johnson 2011-06-29 21:03:44 -0500 Report

Yes, I too have type 2 and OA, pseudo gout, and very painful trigger finger on both hands on all fingers. Left hand has some funky OA swelling and a big bump by where the wrist and thumb connect. I understand about the strength thingy being there and poof, it's gone. Frustrating huh?

MissPuff 2011-07-01 08:59:38 -0500 Report

Thanks, all of you, emarei, Raybie, Hops, Somoca, TrueBeliever, & Patty. I'm hoping that the upgrade will be easier for me. I tried the suggestion of leaving the lancet in the pouch with the elastic strap over the release button & this worked okay mid-day, but was still difficult at night. The upgrade is supposed to be much more sensitive to the touch & take less pressure to release the lance. I hope so. Frankly, I'm afraid I just have to admit that I'm losing more strength all the time. About 8 months ago, I threw a keyboard away because it kept skipping letters when I typed, only to find the new one did the same thing! I was the problem, not the keyboard. May be the same here with the lancet. My medical supplier said if the upgrade doesn't help, we can switch to a different brand, so we will see what happens. Thanks again everyone.


emarei 2011-06-29 20:53:10 -0500 Report

Yes I have diabetes and RA and OA and I understand what your saying , somedays I have trouble doing things but I have an Acucheck diabetes checker and I don't have any trouble checking it. Maybe you need to change your meter.

Gemm 2011-06-29 11:16:28 -0500 Report

I also have both Diabetes and Arthritis among a myriad of other things (see profile if interested). I have problems even holding a lancet in the mornings to do my morning testing. My doctor suggested I try cocking it then laying it on the table and depressing it to prick with the heel of my palm rather than my fingers or with my fingers but straight down like pointing at the floor rather than have to press like using tweezers (an impossibility for me anymore). That has worked well for me. I keep it in the slot in the meter bag, push the lever back with my thumb (works easier for me than a finger), push whatever finger I'm using for testing against the hole in the end and press the button. Rarely will that not work - actually, I haven't had to redo a stick in over a year since getting used to this method. As for loading it, mine doesn't seem that difficult, though I usually do that in the evening when my hands are working better so it's ready to use in the morning rather than have to fumble with it in the morning when my hands won't work and I'm still half asleep. LOL


MissPuff 2011-06-29 12:04:37 -0500 Report

Thanks Gemm. Do you also have trouble with your hands getting shaky? Well, that may just be me since I have to take a pill then wait an hour before I can eat. The body needs fuel right away to work!

I like that idea of keeping it in the slot in the bag - there's a bigger area to push on instead of a narrow button. I don't have trouble loading it & my doctor wants me to test it at different times, sort of mix it up during the week. I have tried the heel of my palm & it's as tough as my index fingers - I always have to adjust the needle for a deeper stick because the skin is too tough.

Thanks for the tip on keeping it in the bag.


Alicia 1777
Alicia 1777 2011-06-29 07:40:35 -0500 Report

Hi, I was thinking that You may benefit from having the accu check compact plus. It has a drum of preloaded test strips and a detachable lancing device which would probably benefit You better with the use of Your hands.

re1ndeer 2011-06-29 04:27:13 -0500 Report

I too have diabetes and arthritis (osteoarthritis). I don't have the freestyle meter I have a Ultrasmart Meter by One Touch. You may want to try a different brand of meter, Maybe the lancing device is defective. You could contact the manufacturer of the freestyle and see if they could send you another lancing device. Explain your situation to them that you are having a problem with the button. It's possible they might send you one for free.

Mistletoe 2011-06-29 12:27:19 -0500 Report

I also use the Ultrasmart Meter by One Touch and have no problems with it.

MissPuff 2011-06-29 13:05:08 -0500 Report

Thanks for the response Mistletoe. I'll try Gemm's suggestion until my new one comes in. If I still have problems, I may have to be changed to a different meter. Isn't arthritis (and muscular diseases for that matter) a real pain? I guess the best thing to do is try to find something about it to laugh at. Thanks again.


jayabee52 2011-06-29 03:43:00 -0500 Report

Howdy SKB!
Yes I have osteoarthritis and Diabetes (DM), but I've never had the kind of problem you describe. My blind bride "Jem" had type 2 also and Fibro, RA, Lupis, (among other "medical challenges") when she was alive and I don't think she experienced this either. Of course we used the One touch ultra 2 meters with the lancet pens which came with the kit. Those pens seemed easy to trigger.

Does CPS for "chronic pain syndrome" or something else?

I don't know what to tell you SKB. Have you tried other lancet pens?

I pray you can find a solution to your problem


MissPuff 2011-06-29 09:26:59 -0500 Report

Thanks Alicia, re1ndeer & James.

I think it is a defective meter. I used my old contour this morning & had no trouble at all. The only thing I can think of if it isn't defective, is that the Freestyle has a small, narrow button that is too hard for me to push, where the Contour has a button the size of my thumb. Only thing is, the Contour isn't as accurate as the Freestyle. I haven't tried any other testers. But I'm going to call about it. I actually got it when I signed up here.

You asked about the CPS, James. I made a little typo there. It is MPS or more recently known as CMP for Chronic Myofascial Pain Syndrome. (I confused my acronyms) Many people, including many doctors, will put it together with Fibro, but it is a very distinct disorder. It is a neuromusclular disorder. Sometimes people have both FMS & CMP, but the doctor or PT will treat only the FMS & that makes the CMP worse, practically immobilizing a person within a month & they have to take a month of complete rest to be able to do anything again. It's horrible.

Thanks for all your suggestions. I'll let you know how it goes. And it was great talking to you again James. Take care.


jayabee52 2011-06-30 21:19:26 -0500 Report

That really CMP sounds really NASTY! Good talking to you too!

MissPuff 2011-06-30 23:28:40 -0500 Report

It really is, James. I've been sent to PT so many times & to aquatherapy, chiro, pain clinics for shots of cortisone (which are supposed to help, but tend to make it worse). Every time I would go to PT, I would have to quit within a month. Same with Aquatherapy. I was was at the end of a month than when I started. I really tried to make the chiro work out since he did muscle stretching, not bone cracking, but after a couple of months, I couldn't stand up straight to walk out of his treatment room. It took a long time to regain movement after that one. But I will be seeing a rheumatologist, hopefully soon, who will deal with all the muscular stuff & arthritis stuff.

Anyway, I should be getting my new lancet tomorrow or Saturday. It is an upgrade of the one I have now, but the release button is more sensitive & is supposed to release with less force applied to it. I hope so. I guess living with the pain every day, I sort of got used to it until I had to do something new. That or there is some deteriation going on in my hands. I know they don't work like I want them to any more. But enough complaining. I'm alive & have a wonderful, loving family & wonderful friends. Who could ask for more? I'll talk to you later James.


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