Background: Self-monitoring of blood glucose (SMBG), an important tool in diabetes management help patients achieve and maintain target glycaemic levels hence reducing complications. SMBG is usually done with glucose meters which are affordable, portable and easy to use. Significant variations sometimes observed in glucose meter readings necessitated this study. We evaluated the accuracy of glucose meters used routinely in our unit using ISO 15197 guideline.
Methods: Three glucose meters were evaluated: On-CallPlus (ACCON Biotech), Accu-chek (Roche), and Easymax (EPS BioTechnology Corp). Random glucose meter readings of 49 diabetic on routine clinic visit were compared to a simultaneously conducted standard laboratory measurement using glucose oxidase method. Data obtained were analysed using Statistical Packages for Social Sciences.
Results: The glucose meters, Accuchek, OncallPlus, Easymax had 45.5, 27.3 and 18.2% of samples it read as >75 mg/dl within the target range of ±15 mg/dl of the reference instrument. None met the ISO 15197 target of 95%. While for all samples the reference instrument read as >75 mg/dl; 57.9, 28.9 and 7.9% of Accuchek, Easymax and Oncallplus readings respectively were within ±20% accuracy. Accuchek had the highest accuracy of 27.3% for samples <75 mg/dl within the target range of ±10 mg/dl and ±5 mg/dl to the reference instrument. Pearson correlation analysis of meter and laboratory readings were Accuchek (.980), Easymax (.983) and OnCallPlus (.971) respectively. Accuchek had the least mean absolute deviation from standard test results at 20% and thus was most accurate while OnCallPlus was least accurate at 50%.
Conclusion: The three glucose meters tested varied in their accuracy and consistency when compared to standard laboratory procedure. This should be borne in mind when interpreting test results and selecting self-monitoring tools.