The Ten Commandments Of Blood Glucose Testing

Dr Sarita Bajaj,
DM(Endocrinology, AIIMS),
Associate Prof Medicine,
MLN Medical College, Allahabad.

  1. Good control of blood glucose is all we know today that will prevent complications of diabetes. it is mandatory to have both your fasting (FBG) and post prandial blood glucose (PPBG) tested once a month.
  2. Test venous sample (not glucometer, capillary) from nearest laboratory. All labs run by qualified doctors are equally reliable. Glucometers are only meant for self monitoring, not routine once a month blood testing.
  3. FBG sample is generally given at the time the lab opens. You may drink water and your usual cup of tea (without sugar or snacks; not just milk with some tea leaves) prior to the test. Have a normal meal the night prior to giving FBG.
  4. After giving the FBG eat your first meal at the usual time (normal daily meal not heavy meal; never glucose or sweets). The evening prior to the FBG have a normal dinner. Testing PPBG after intake of glucose is done, sometimes, for diagnostic purposes only.
  5. Take your regular dose of medication (oral/insulin) at the usual time. If for any reason medication is not available (eg you have forgotten to carry or buy it) do not have your PPBG tested. You may have it tested some other day.
  6. Go back 2 hours after the meal for your PPBG test. It need not be tested on the same day ie FBG & PPBG may be performed a couple of days apart.
  7. In case your first meal is breakfast, then next month PPBG may be 2 hours after second meal (lunch). PPBG therefore may be either 2 hours after breakfast or lunch alternately. Do not change quantum or timing of meal on the day of test.
  8. Do not be surprised if the PPBG value is lower than your FBG value. This may happen because of medication.
  9. Because FBG & PPBG glucose values represent only immediate values, ideally Glycosylated hemoglobin should be tested once in 3 months. This is a special test which tells about diabetic control over the last 3 months.
  10. In case of unexpected or alarming results contact your consultant or pathologist before taking any action; to avoid undue anxiety and wasteful expenditure of precious time and money.

Learn to believe your blood glucose report but don't let it run (RUIN) your life.