When I had the Omnipod system and was sure that it was (finally) the system for me, I stocked up on strips… like, big time. Now, for cost reasons, I can’t use the Omnipod system, and I have tons of strips left. After digging around, I found my old Freestyle Lite meter kit that still had the original 10 “trial” strips with it. There was just one problem.
The strips I have are simply “Freestyle”… not “Freestyle Lite”.
Now, I have never been one to use off-label strips in a meter as I’ve read some try to use generic strips for a certain meter that look like a brand name one and they just don’t work. So, I never tried to use the regular FS strips with the FS Lite meter thinking they wouldn’t work nor be interchangeable. Not like something would happen like the meter blow up or anything… just never thought to try it.
Then there became a buzz around the Facebook group for Omnipod users and a few discussions on TuDiabetes that all of the Freestyle strips were exactly the same, just packaged in different boxes. And, in other places, some people said they were in fact different due to the solution that is activated in the strips when you apply blood being different. I’m not a scientist, so I can’t speak for this myself.
So I decided to try it. I’ve been using the regular Freestyle strips (the ones that are coded “16″) in the non-codeable Freestyle Lite meter. After doing some side-by-side testing against my other meters, the readings seemed to average about mid-way of the OneTouch Ultra Mini and OneTouch Verio IQ meters I have. Plus, with the new chart that shows that Freestyle Lite meters are more accurate across the board than their competitors, I’m more willing to use this meter than the others. My tests that are back-to-back for CGM calibration are rarely ever more than 5-10mg/dL apart from each other and that, to me, helps me to think that maybe the Freestyle meter is more “stable” in reading correct glucose readings than other meters.
I don’t like that it takes a special cable unlike the Verio IQ’s mini-USB connection though. I know it’s small and everything, but I’m sure that even a micro USB connection would take up less internal space than a stereo plug. So, Abbott Diabetes Care, can you make the next Freestyle meter uploadable with cables that are 21st Century? And, I mean, come on, I buy hundreds of strips every three months, the least you can do is throw in a free cable and not charge another $35 for one.
For an update on how things are going with the replacement t:slim, click here.