what is best brand advised pet Glucometer in UK

Discussion in 'Welcome to the Group - Post an Introduction Here' started by Sheila Sarker, Aug 28, 2016.

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  1. Sheila Sarker

    Sheila Sarker New Member

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    Aug 28, 2016
    Hi my name is Sheila, and live in the UK, and my cat Bronte is currently in emergency vet care after going to the vet last week for possible diagnosis of diabetes (after considerable weight loss). She had first blood test Tue and then again (along with Urine) on Thurs evening. We were told that they could not give a diagnosis until final results were in, and expected back on Sat (which didn't materialise!) or Tue. Since then she has gone down hill- resulting in where she is now. The vet has not been very helpful with any information, and everything I have learned is from these sites. (which have been extremely helpful, caring and informative...and also quick with any responses. Last update was that Bronte is now being started on insulin today and they have said she found ketones in both blood and urine. (but too early to give any other levels etc) Whilst reading all the helpful tips, I was wondering if anyone can give any advise on what the best suppliers are in the uk and also what is the most suitable pet glucometer to get (that will be compatible with most strips, as apparently some strips won't fit in some metres).
     
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  2. TempestsMum

    TempestsMum Well-Known Member

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    Jul 30, 2016
    Hi Sheila welcome to the forums :)

    I'm so sorry Bronte is going through all that, there are lots of helpful people here who can guide you through everything. General questions are usually posted on the main health forums.

    I'm in the UK too and use the Alphatrak2 meter for pets.

    Most meters have specific strips so you can't interchange them unfortunately. But I do use the freestyle lite ones in mine which look identical to the AT ones.

    Keeping everything crossed for a wonderful outcome for Bronte :)
     
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  3. Sheila Sarker

    Sheila Sarker New Member

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    Aug 28, 2016
    Thankyou
     
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  4. Diana&Tom

    Diana&Tom Well-Known Member

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    Dec 29, 2009
    Welcome Sheila and well done for finding your way over here! It really is the best place to come to enable you to continue your treatment for Bronte.
    Elizabeth mentioned a couple of meters that you could check out, as did Rachel. I have a feeling @Helenjayne came up with a good one too.
    Do keep posting about any question at all - no question to small!
    Best wishes
    Diana
     
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  5. Elizabeth and Bertie

    Elizabeth and Bertie Well-Known Member

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    Sep 6, 2010
    Hello Sheila, and welcome! :bighug:
    (It's 'Elizabeth Campbell' from the FB group here. I'm glad to see that you made it over to FDMB.)

    It's good news that Bronte has now had some fluids and is feeling a bit better.
    (Here's a few more hugs for you: :bighug::bighug::bighug:)

    Generally speaking, meters and strips go together, so 'x' brand of meter will use 'x' brand of test strips. (There are some 'universal' test strips coming onto the market, but they have very mixed reviews...) Most of us use ordinary 'human' glucose meters. The Accuchek Aviva is popular with Brits. I like my trusty old One Touch meter, but it uses more blood than the Accuchek Aviva does. Others may well have further suggestions for you.

    But some folks choose to use the animal-specific meter, Alphatrak.
    It's a nice meter, but the test strips are very costly.
    As Tara @TempestsMum mentioned above though, some people here use their Alphatrak meter with 'Freestyle Lite' (human meter) test strips. They're made by the same manufacturer and folks here have found that they seem to work in the Alphatrak meter.

    If I were you though, at this point, I think I'd be looking to get the first decent meter that I could lay my hands on, and maybe 'fine tune' my choice later. Just having a glucose meter at all is the most important thing.

    On FB we also mentioned the importance of ketone urine testing, and the possibility of getting a blood ketone meter. Ketone test strips are easy to obtain from pharmacies; but you may want to look into getting a blood ketone meter also.

    You've had - and are still having - a really difficult day, Sheila. Please know that others here (and their kitties) have had similar days and have come through it all just fine. You just need to get over this 'bump in the road'.
    Take good care of yourself. And we will be here to support you in any way that we can.

    Here's another hug for you; an especially big one this time...
    .

    upload_2016-8-28_18-2-0.jpeg

    Eliz
     
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2016
  6. Chris & China

    Chris & China Well-Known Member

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    May 10, 2013
    Hi Sheila and welcome to the FDMB!! It's the best place you never wanted to be if you have a diabetic cat!!

    Glad to hear Bronte is at the ER vet and getting the help she needs!

    I'm in the US, so can't help with the meters and stuff, but I was reading up on the Facebook group and had a few things to add.

    Ketones can be measured in either blood or urine, but a blood ketone meter's strips are about $1 EACH, so most people use the urine ketone strips. You just dip the strip into a fresh urine and compare the color that comes up to the scale that will be on the bottle. Anything more than "trace" is a medical emergency. You can buy these at any human pharmacy or online.

    Here are some Urine testing tips for you too

    As for the meter, I'd go ahead and pick one up before Bronte comes home.....get one of the human ones the other people have recommended...the strips are more affordable and although you may have to pay "full price" this one time for the meter and strips, you can plan on getting refill strips from Ebay down the line. All our protocols here were developed using human meters, so besides having insanely expensive strips, the AlphaTrak's numbers will be a little different from the ones most of us refer to here, so if at all possible, I'd just get one of the human meters to start off with.

    The vet may try to tell you that you can't use a human meter....well there are hundreds of us using them daily here that would highly disagree!

    Recently, another insulin other than Caninsulin has been approved for use in the UK....it's called ProZinc and it's a much better insulin for cats than Caninsulin is...if at all possible, push for that instead

    The Royal Veterinary College in London has a Diabetes Remission Clinic too that occasionally accepts new cats for treatment...they're doing some great research with the other insulins like Lantus too (and best thing....if your cat is accepted into a trial, they provide the supplies!)

    Sending prayers for Bronte......ketones are very serious, but we've had many cats here respond to treatment and come home to live long and happy lives!
     
  7. Alexi

    Alexi Member

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    Apr 10, 2016
    The Alphatrak 2 is pricy - I paid about £70 at Animed UK which was the cheapest I could find, it comes with lancets, lancet machine and 25 strips. I also use freestyle lite strips, but do have some alphatrak strips as back up but they are pricey. The Freestyle lite meter looks identical to the Alphatrak and is about £40, the strips cost around £22 for 50, I buy a generic lancet around £10 for 200, and 100 0.5 unit measurement u40 syringes (used for Caninsulin and Prozinc - which are the two licensed insulins in the UK) cost me about £10. I use keto-diastix for checking the urine, I can give you links for all of these if you like.

    The diabetes remission clinic is currently recruiting for a trial, it involves monthly visits to the clinic in Hatfield, Herts for six months. Entry criteria are to be within six months of diagnosis and not to have had steroids within 3 months of diagnosis. They do a lot of tests for free and keep your vet informed, and they offer free insulin and food. If you are within striking distance of the clinic it is worth looking into.
     
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  8. Diana&Tom

    Diana&Tom Well-Known Member

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    Dec 29, 2009
    @Alexi I think Sheila is from Southampton so a bit of a trek to Hatfield but your info could be interesting to some of the other recent UK people on this site (and FB page) - is it worth a separate thread just in case?
     
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  9. Alexi

    Alexi Member

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    Apr 10, 2016
    I just checked and Southampton is about 2 hours from Hatfield so is do-able with a fair wind, I have travelled further than that with cats before today. The information is on the DRC Facebook page, I will see if I can find out more then post details.
     
  10. Diana&Tom

    Diana&Tom Well-Known Member

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    Dec 29, 2009
    Trying to think of other UKers to tag - @Marlena
     
  11. Elizabeth and Bertie

    Elizabeth and Bertie Well-Known Member

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    Sep 6, 2010
    Sheila ~ @Sheila Sarker , am sending prayers and well-wishes your way, as are others here, I'm sure.
    Please do update us when you feel able to.
    (((Hugs)))

    Eliz
     
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  12. TempestsMum

    TempestsMum Well-Known Member

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    Jul 30, 2016
    I know I am! Would definitely love an update on Bronte when you can! :bighug:
     
  13. Helenjayne

    Helenjayne Member

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    May 7, 2016
    Helloooooo. I am UK and use the SD codefree from Amazon, the only downside is it likes to change the date and time regularly so you have to record results on the day or soon after (I have lost loads of readings cos I didn't) it's proper cheap as are the strips, failing that search for free meters I got a human one for free but the strips aren't as cheap. Let me see if I can dig the details our for you x
     
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  14. Helenjayne

    Helenjayne Member

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    May 7, 2016
  15. Aga

    Aga New Member

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    Aug 28, 2017
    Hello All,

    I live in southampton uk and my Leon has been diagnosed over a month ago. He was in very bad state and had to be hospitalised.
    He was given catinsulin but it wasn't getting him stable. My friend is a vet technician in Poland and managed to get me lantus which she always uses when treating diabetic cats. My vet refused to even listen to other options so I stopped taking him there and started doing curves and testing at home. He is on diabetic food and gained weight. Looks more like himself. The problem is his sugar is still very high.
    I originally bought alphatrac but it's just too expensive to buy strips so I bought freestyle strips. I also bought freestyle insulinx meter which is Abbot brand as well to see if it would be better to use. I compared both readings today and discrepency is huge. Around 30% higher on alpha. Now I am paranoid that if the human is accurate then Leon's sugar is actually in norm and I shouldn't give him any more insulin than 2 units.
    Can you advise please?
    Thank you
    Aga
     
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