Forget Pricking the Finger, Wear a Watch Instead
Pricking the finger several times a day to monitor blood sugar levels is often a necessary task in the lives of many persons with diabetes. However, a new device that was recently approved by the FDA may make that painful prick a thing of the past.
Called the GlucoWatch Biographer, the device is a wristwatch that collects fluids from the skin through low electric currents to measure glucose levels. The watch monitors glucose levels every 20 minutes for 12 hours. If blood sugar levels fall too low or rise too high, the watch will sound an alarm.
The FDA has approved the GlucoWatch for limited use with the continued use of finger pricks for now. However, the device will reduce the number of times a person may have to use the finger prick method to test his/her blood sugar levels. (Experts currently recommend testing blood sugar levels between four and seven times a day in people with diabetes.) The FDA recommends confirming the GlucoWatch results several times a day with a finger prick test, because of the risk for error. The watch appears less effective in detecting very low glucose levels. The GlucoWatch is only available through prescription. Always consult your physician for more information.
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