how to help someone with type 2, and on insulin.

By meglettnm Latest Reply 2011-02-09 08:11:16 -0600
Started 2011-02-08 00:31:03 -0600

Hello all. I help to care for my mom who has type 2 diabities, and is on insulin. She complains that when she checks her blood sugar like she is supposed to, it comes out high when she uses her right hand. However, when she uses her left hand, her readings are normal. Does anyone else have this issue, or is this a fluke, and she should take the average between both readings? I'm confused at this phenomonon. Please help if you know the answer, or could help us.

13 replies

meglettnm 2011-02-09 06:37:04 -0600 Report

My mom noticed that on her left side, the blood sugar readings were at least 90 points higher than on her right side. Every time she goes to chech her sugar, she lays out her meter, lancet device. She washes her hands, and dries them completly with a paper towel. The meter she uses has the disks of 10 tests in them, so she never has to handle the strips. So we are still confused. She doesn't have to "milk" the blood out of her fingers very often if ever. Any other thoughts?

MewElla 2011-02-09 08:11:16 -0600 Report

Never heard of this one…I would definitely talk to my dr and see what he thought. Good Luck to you and yours.

GabbyPA 2011-02-09 07:28:25 -0600 Report

I don't have any and you have answered all the issues. Perhaps as LabRat90 suggests it could be circulation. 90 is a pretty big number for a variance. Has she spoken to her doctor about it?

LabRat90 2011-02-08 12:34:33 -0600 Report

I know that a difference in blood pressure numbers on each arm can be different due to circulation problems. I wonder if that could be an issue with your mom. I would check with a cardiologist. I am looking after my mother-in-law with type 2 diabetes and on insulin also. She is in the hospital with bronchitis and pnemonia and is having a spike in heart rate because of the breathing treatments. Diabetes affects every body system at the same time.

kdroberts 2011-02-08 09:05:46 -0600 Report

The first thing you have to see is if she is testing on one hand and then immediately after on the other. The next you need to look at is the actual numbers. Unless she is testing basically at the same time and the numbers are very, very different (like a 100+ difference) then you can't really make any kind of conclusion. Gabby has explained the downsides to the meters themselves which may also be a factor.

GabbyPA 2011-02-08 08:50:36 -0600 Report

I know there can be a difference even between fingers on the same hand. How large is the difference? A 20% difference is within the allowable variances. The other thing could be that she touches something with her right hand that she doesn't with her left. So unless she cleans her hands with soap and water and dries with a new paper towel each time, there could be a contamination even in picking up her meter. So make sure everything is clean. Also, if she has to squeeze out the blood, that can cause it to vary.

granniesophie 2011-02-08 08:59:02 -0600 Report

Apparently I am an idiot! I usually have to squeeze out blood-didn't realize that could be why my numbers wre possibley so high-will have to dial up the number on my lancing device a little-oww!!

kdroberts 2011-02-08 09:02:47 -0600 Report

Squeezing won't make that much difference, if anything it would slightly lower your numbers since you would be slightly diluting the blood sample.

GabbyPA 2011-02-08 09:05:49 -0600 Report

Hmmm, I was told the opposite. That squeezing or milking will cause our numbers to rise by my Diabetes Education Instructor.

kdroberts 2011-02-08 09:18:08 -0600 Report

We may be saying the same thing in a different way. Do you mean that the reading you get will be higher or that your actual blood sugar will be higher? What I was told and read is that the reading may be slightly lower than your actual blood sugar. Eg, your reading is 100 but your actual blood sugar may be 110, not taking meter accuracy into consideration.

GabbyPA 2011-02-08 09:21:27 -0600 Report

Hmmm, nope. I will have to check on my notes again. I understand that is is that when you squeeze that you may show higher on the meter than in actuality. I have been wrong before in my understanding...I will check on that.

granniesophie 2011-02-08 09:14:57 -0600 Report

I've got no one to ask-so I rely on you guys! Can I have a general concensus?? :)
In the meantime-I will try not squeezing and see what happens-I will write in my log if I squeezed or not to keep track for myself!

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