AlphaTrak vs Human Strips -- Any Difference?

Discussion in 'Feline Health - (The Main Forum)' started by philar21, Sep 21, 2017.

  1. philar21

    philar21 New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2017
    Hi Everyone,

    So I have been using the AlphaTrak since initial diagnosis but I notice the human test strips are wayyyyyy cheaper.

    Is there actually a serious difference? I want to save money where I can...it literally costs $2 a strip in Canadian dollars for the AlphaTrak...that's absurdly expensive relative to this, which is like .20 cents a strip.

    Thanks
     
  2. Squeakycats

    Squeakycats Member

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2017
    Many of us who started out with the AlphaTrak switch to human meters for exactly this reason--the cost of the test strips REALLY adds up! There is indeed a significant difference, but not one that makes the human meters a worse choice, in my opinion.

    You definitely can't use the human strips in the AlphaTrak meter. The human meters will give you different numbers/values, and there's not a consistent, predictable relationship between them (i.e. you can't say "a 200 on the Alpha Trak is the same as a 150 on the human meter"--it just doesn't work that way). So you have to pick one, not use the AT sometimes and the human one other times.

    There are actually two different spreadsheets you can set up on this site--one for if you're using a pet meter, and one for if you're using a human meter.

    I was initially reluctant to switch to a human meter (I use one of the Relion ones, which are widely available in the US--not sure about Canada). My vet tested the AlphaTrak against whatever they're using, and they were consistent, and I just have an overall sense that the AlphaTrak might be more "accurate." But I'm happy now that I made the switch. I can afford to test my cat frequently, I can buy the strips in a local store instead of having to order them online, and it's actually easier to use this site (because most people use human meters, a lot of the information here refers to the numbers from them).
     
  3. philar21

    philar21 New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2017
    UPDATE:

    I found an old thread on this same topic and saw lots of mention of ReliON....thinking about buying this meter and the strips on eBay (only way to get it in Canada from what I can tell).

    Alternatively, I saw mention of using FS Lite strips with my existing AlphaTrak meter. The only thing is I see the FS Lite strips don't have a calibration number (or so I understand). How would that work with my existing AlphaTrak, which has separate dog and feline calibration numbers. Do I just put it in and ignore the calibration number?

    At this point I think I am leaning toward the ReliOn.

    Thanks for input everyone. I simply cannot afford the AlphaTrak strips long term.
     
  4. philar21

    philar21 New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2017
    Thx. Will order ReliOn now. What model would you recommend? I see a few different ones. I am leaning toward the ReliOn Confirm (see here) using the ReliOn micro strips.
     
  5. MrWorfMen's Mom

    MrWorfMen's Mom Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2015
    The Confirm or Micro meters are the most frequently used by the US folks here.

    Food for Thought: Given the prices they are charging for the Relion meter and strips on eBay plus delivery charges to Canada and any potential duty you might get charged, I seriously don't think you're going to be saving anything using the Relion meter in the long run unless you live near the border and can make a run across for strips as needed. If I were you, I'd go get a Freestyle Lite meter (might be free with purchase of strips). The strips are a little less than half the cost of the AT2 strips, and can be used in the AT2 meter in a pinch which means you'd always have a back up meter.

    Can't tell you how many times I've seen folks panicking because they are down to a couple of strips and their online order hasn't arrived. If you order from the US you will be dealing with not only potential delivery delays but also customs delays. So if you go that route, I'd be sure to keep several extra vials of strips on hand at all times and reorder well in advance of any anticipated need.
     
    Kris & Teasel and Squeakycats like this.
  6. Squeakycats

    Squeakycats Member

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2017
    Totally agree with @MrWorfMen's Mom--if there's something you can get locally, it's probably best. You just want to try to get something that only requires a really small sample.
     
  7. Tuxedo Mom

    Tuxedo Mom Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2014
    Also agree with @MrWorfMen's Mom . I use the AT2 with a Freestyle lite as back up. Both meters use a very small blood drop. As Linda said you can use the FS Lite strips in the AT2 meter if necessary. I personally have been using FS Lite strips in my AT2 meter for almost 3 years and with trustworthy results. I did a large number of same blood side by side comparisons in the beginning before I was satisfied using this method. Since the FS Lite strips are available at most pharmacies you will not have to worry about running out.
     
  8. philar21

    philar21 New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2017
    Thanks everyone.

    If I get the FS Lite strips to use with the AlphaTrak I just slot these strips in and ignore anything about calibrating to a number?

    Found a guy selling 100 of these in Canada for $50 Canadian with free shipping on ebay.ca

    Yay :)
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2017
  9. Case

    Case Member

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2017
    You would use the code number you already have set from your last bottle of alphatrak strips. Mine happened to be 07 and I've been using that code ever since with the FSL strips. It works very well and much less expensive. :)
     
  10. Squeakycats

    Squeakycats Member

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2017
    Wow, it is great to know that that's an option!
     
  11. George's Mom

    George's Mom New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2014
    is there a chart that I can convert the human meter over to the pet numbers for the vet ?
     
  12. LuanneP

    LuanneP Member

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2017
    Hi @philar21 ! I'm in Canada too, Belleville, Ontario and I was paying $90 for a container of 50 test strips for the AT2. It's crazy expensive. Recently I decided to try the FreeStyle Lite strips since I can buy those from Walmart for literally half the price & I used them side by side with the AT2 strips for a couple days & the readings are pretty much the same so I use the FreeStyle Lite strips now. They're still costly but way less expensive than the AT2 strips.
     
  13. JeffJ

    JeffJ Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2016
    You can get FreeStyle Lite strips for $0.40 - $0.45 each in quanty on Ebay. That's where I get mine.
     

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