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Home > About FreeStyle > News and Views > Safe and smart testing – at home and on the go

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Latest FreeStyle news, announcements and thoughts for people taking a proactive approach to managing their diabetes
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Safe and smart testing – at home and on the go

This time of year, nature can be full of wintry surprises and keeping our homes cosy is a top priority. But environmental factors like temperature and moisture can affect the accuracy and usefulness of your FreeStyle blood glucose monitoring system. Here are our top tips for safe and smart testing in inclement weather:

1. Clean, warm, dry hands. You’ve heard it all before: wash your hands and the test site with soap and warm water. Rinse and dry thoroughly, do not use lotion or cream on the test site. Of course there’s the angle of cleanliness. Many people think of cleanliness in terms of avoiding an infection by lancing the skin. But washing your hands in warm water has two more benefits. First, it removes residues from foods or other substances (i.e. hand cream) that could affect your blood glucose readings. Second, washing your hands in warm water increases blood flow to the fingertips. Our bodies naturally limit blood flow to the fingertips when we’re cold, but washing in warm water can make it easier to get the sample you need for a blood glucose test. Be sure to dry your hands completely before you test too: water on your fingertips could affect your blood glucose test result.

2. Keep your FreeStyle meter and strips not too warm, not too cool. Just right. It’s tempting to toss the blood glucose meter kit in the bottom of a bag when we’re out for the day, or leave it in the car while we do a shop. Storing diabetes supplies by a radiator may be no problem in the summer when the heating’s off. But it’s important to know how hot and cold temperatures – indoors and out – can affect the performance of your FreeStyle blood glucose monitoring system. How can you protect your blood glucose monitoring system from temperatures that could affect it? First, check the operating temperature ranges for your meter and test strips in the table below;

System Meter Temperature Range Glucose Test Strip Temperature Range Ketone Test Strip Temperature Range
FreeStyle Optium Neo

Use: 10°C to 50°C

Storage: -20°C to 60°C

Use: 15°C to 40°C

Storage: 4°C to 30°C

Use: 18°C  to 30°C

Storage: 4°C to 30°C

FreeStyle Optium

Use: 10°C to 50°C

Storage: -20°C to 60°C

Use: 15°C to 40°C

Storage: 4°C to 30°C

Use: 18°C  to 30°C

Storage: 4°C to 30°C

FreeStyle InsuLinx

Use: 4°C to 40°C

Storage: -20°C to 60°C

Use: 15°C to 40°C

Storage: 4°C to 30°C

 
FreeStyle Libre reader

Use: 10°C to 45°C

Storage: -20°C to 60°C

Use: 15°C to 40°C

Storage: 4°C to 30°C

Use: 18°C  to 30°C

Storage: 4°C to 30°C

FreeStyle Libre Sensor

Use: 10°C to 45°C

Storage: -20°C to 60°C

   
FreeStyle Freedom Lite

Use: 4°C to 40°C

Storage: -20°C to 60°C

Use: 15°C to 40°C

Storage: 4°C to 30°C

 
FreeStyle Lite

Use: 4°C to 40°C

Storage: -20°C to 60°C

Use: 15°C to 40°C

Storage: 4°C to 30°C

 

Adapted from Instructions for Use, Abbott Diabetes Care.

As you can see in the table, meters may have a wider operating temperature range than test strips.

3. If it’s too cold outside for your strips and you’re out and about or hitting the ski slopes, consider zipping your testing kit in an inside jacket pocket to keep it cosy.

4. At home, choose a place within the appropriate temperature range for storage (see above) to keep your unopened test strip boxes – definitely not in the refrigerator, by a heater or on a windowsill!

FreeStyle Diabetes Companion App

Is designed to help you get the most from your FreeStyle meter. It’s on your smartphone to support you whenever, wherever you are.

Download FreeStyle Diabetes Companion App

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* Scanning the sensor to obtain glucose values does not require lancets ×
*1. Scanning the sensor to obtain glucose values does not require lancets 2. A finger prick test using a blood glucose meter is required during times of rapidly changing glucose levels when interstitial fluid glucose levels may not accurately reflect blood glucose levels, or if hypoglycemia or impending hypoglycemia is reported but the symptoms do not match the system readings. ×

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