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Glucometer Elite XLBayer Glucometer Elite XL


How the Bayer Elite model Differs from the Elite XL

Bayer has Customer Service Representatives available 24 hrs a day, 7 days a week to assist you with using your meter. (800) 348-8100 Bayer Glucometers - Elite models

Glucometer Elite

Insert Check Strip (says CHECK) and wait 10 sec. for memory to activate.

OR insert a new Test Strip and wait 3 min. for memory to activate.

Average of the stored Test Results will display first, then 1 and the most recent result, 2 and the next most recent result through 20 and the oldest result. END displays when you have viewed all readings.

How the Bayer Dex model differs from the Elite XLBayer Glucometer Dex (Espirit)

Glucometer Dex (Esprit outside U.S.)

LifeScan ONE TOUCH FastTake with new FastDraw strips LifeScan FastTake Meter

LifeScan will no longer make the FastTake Blood Glucose meter effective November 10,2001. Consider the LifeScan Ultra model, which has received excellent reviews. (FastTake was also marketed under the brand names: SmartScan®, EuroFlash® and PocketScan®)

Differences from the Elite XL

FastDraw strip design is similar for Ultra and FastTake meters.

June 9, 2000, LifeScan released a new capillary action "sip-up" style of FastTake Strip called the FastDraw design, similar to the Bayer Elite and Accu-Chek Comfort Curve strips.  Place the top white edge of the strip to the blood drop and let it "sip-up" until the confirmation window is completely filled.  When the red blood covers the white/gray squares, you have gotten a sufficient sample.



LifeScan ONE TOUCH Ultra

LifeScan ONE TOUCH Ultra Meter LifeScan ONE TOUCH Ultra kit

 TheraSense FreeStyle


Blood Glucose Meters Considerations

The primary considerations are small sample size, ease of meter use, and ease of obtaining a reliable sample. Pets will move when you try to test them. If a meter is fussy about the angle that you have to hold it to get an accurate sample (such as the Dex), that may outweigh all the other advantages.

Sample Size

Sample Size 30 - 10 - 3 uLSample Size 5 - 10 - 15 uL

Required sample sizes are measured in microliters. How big a blood drop is needed?



Comparison of Meters used with Diabetic Cats

Bayer Glucometer Elite XL LifeScan FastTake MeterAbbott/Medisense Precision QID Meters - pen and card styleAccu-Chek Advantage MeterBayer Glucometer Dex




Elite XL



Abbott Medisense Precision QID (Medisense 2 Companion 2)


Accu-Chek Advantage




Result Ranges mg/dL US mmol/L Europe 20-600 1.1-33.3 20-600 1.1-33.3 20-600 1.1-33.3 20-600 1.1-33.3 10-600 0.6-33.3
Blood ul needed  3  2.5  3.5  3, or 9-50  3-4
Memory stores  120  150  10  100  100
How to sample sips up, any meter angle ok. FastDraw sips up 1.5 ul drop touch drop Comfort Curve strip (sips up 3 ul) highly recommended don't use regular strip, drop on 9-50 sips up, hold meter horiz. and fill only for 1-2 sec. after the beep and count-down starts
Sample media strip strip strip strip cartridge w/10
Operating Temperature 50-104F 10-40C 59-95F 15-35C 64-86F 18-30C 57-104F 14-40C 50-104F 10-40C
Auto Shut Off  3 min  2 min  3 min  5 min 2 min test, 15 min memory
Time to Result  30 sec  15 sec  20 sec  40 sec  30 sec
Hematocrit  20-60% if <300 mg/dl, >300 -55% 30-55%  20-70% 20-65%<200, but 20-55% if >200 mg/dl  20-60% if <300 mg/dl, >300 25-55%
Beeps yes/optional  no  no  yes/optional  yes/optional
Insufficient Sample falsely lower Er or falsely lower can add more for 30 sec, or falsely lower Warns, 15 sec to add more falsely lower
Control Solution

Exp. date or 6 mo after open

incl Normal

Exp. date or 3 mo after open

incl. Normal

Exp. date or 3 mo after open

not incl., Hi or Low

Exp. date or 3 mo after open

incl Level 1 (Normal)

Exp. date or 6 mo after open

incl Normal

Humidity 20-80% 10-90% 10-90% <85%  10-80%
Data cable Software Optional WinGlucofacts Optional InTouch Optional PrecisionLink Optional Cambit Optional WinGlucofacts
Battery Life 1000 ~1 year 3x/d 1000 ~1 year 3x/d ~4,000 tests, up to 4 yrs varies 6 mo-1 year 1000 ~1 year 3x/d
Battery 2, 3v Lithium #CR2032 2, 1.5v #357 Silver Oxide Not Replaceable 2, 3v Lithium #CR2450 2, 3v Lithium #CR2016
Warranty 5 yrs 3 yrs free replacement 3 yrs 5 yrs
7day/24hr phone #  800 348-8100  800 381-7226  800 527-3339  800 858-8072  800 348-8100
 Recommended  by diabetic pet  owners  Yes Yes  Yes  Yes  Yes? mixed opinions




Elite XL

LifeScan One Touch


Abbott Medisense Precision QID (Medisense 2 Companion 2)


Accu-Chek Advantage




LifeScan ONE TOUCH Ultra Meter



LifeScan One Touch Ultra

TheraSense FreeStyle
Result Ranges mg/dL US mmol/L Europe 20-600 




Blood ul needed 1 ul 0.3 ul
Memory stores 150, 14 & 30 day averaging 250, 14 day average
How to sample FastDraw sips up 1.0 ul drop sips up
Sample media strip strip
Operating Temperature 43-111F, 6-44C 50-95F
Auto Shut Off 2 min 2 min
Time to Result 15 sec 5 sec
Hematocrit 30-55% 0-60%
Beeps  no yes
Insufficient Sample Er or falsely lower(?) ?
Control Solution incl Normal incl Normal
Humidity 10-90% 5-90%
Data cable Software LifeScan One Touch Interface cable ~$20., IN TOUCH software free download Optional, FreeStyle Connect software ~$75.
Battery Life 1000 tests ~1 year 3x/d 1000 tests ~1 year 3x/d
Battery 1 3v Lithium #CR2032, standard watch 2 AAAA (Radio Shack)
Warranty 3 yrs 5 yrs
7day/24hr phone # US        (800) 381-7226      Canada (800) 663-5521 toll free (888) 522-5226
 Recommended  by diabetic pet  owners Yes Yes



LifeScan One Touch Ultra TheraSense FreeStyle

Other Meters

 Meter Blood Sample Size in ul Company Recommended by diabetic pet owners
Accu-Chek III 25-50 Roche No. Large sample
Accu-Chek Easy 15-50 Roche No. Large sample
Accu-Chek Complete (9-50 reg strip) only 3ul with Comfort Curve Roche Yes, with Comfort Curve Strips, see Accu-Chek Advantage
One Touch Basic 10-25 LifeScan  ?
One Touch Profile 10-25 LifeScan  ?
Sure Step 10-30 LifeScan  ?
RSG ExacTech 10-50 Medisense (Abbott) No. Large sample can't move meter.

Children with Diabetes Meter Comparison (Excel spreadsheet)

For Children with Diabetes Excel spreadsheet, scroll to the end of the page to the For More Information section, click the hotspot "Glucose monitor spreadsheet comparison by Tom Bartol (updated 6 May 2001)" to launch the Excel XLS directly or right click (if you're using IE) to Save Target As... locally


If you think you may not be getting an accurate BG, check the following:

Specifics are for the Elite XL, check your manual for your meter's specifications and procedures.

  1. Look at the strip. Was it filled enough to give a sufficient sample?
  2. Check that the strips weren't expired and that the strip F code matches the meter setting.
  3. Temperatures ok for strips (store at 59-86 F), and meter operating range 50-104 F?
  4. Once the foil is opened, the Test Strip should be used immediately. The sensor uses a chemical reaction to measure BG, which deteriorates with exposure. Discard any partially-filled strip, you can't add more blood to it during another cycle and get an accurate reading.
  5. Use the Check Strip (says CHECK) to test the meter electronics.
  6. Use the Normal Control Solution to check that strips read in the specified range (ex.78-112 mg/dL on F-2 strips). A High Control Solution is available which tests the meter accuracy at higher BGs (ex.250-339 mg/dL on F-2 strips), which is still much lower than many unregulated cats' BG level without insulin.
  7. Call Customer Service for more help, or if the meter appears to be malfunctioning.
  8. Severe dehydration, which may be caused by vomiting and/or diarrhea, can affect BG reading with capillary blood.

Meter Accuracy Varies in Measurable BG Range

The manufacturers of home glucose meters use a technology that provides the most accuracy around 100 mg/dL BG, which is in the normal range (for humans and for cats). The meters read slightly lower BGs in the hypoglycemia range but may be quite a bit lower than actual BGs in the hyperglycemia range. A given meter will reliably reproduce similar numbers in the same range, when a BG test is immediately repeated, assuming both samples were sufficient, the meter is within specifications for operation, and the meter electronics check out ok (Elite has a CHECK strip).

The Bayer Elite reads progressively lower as the BG number goes higher.

Here are correction factors one person measured for his Elite by doing a vein draw and ear prick at the same time on his diabetic cat, over a period of several days, to get samples at various BG's. This was all done with the assistance of a vet. The venous sample was collected, centrifuged, and hand-carried to the local IDEXX lab for testing. The results are what you see, the difference between an ear prick with the Bayer Elite and a venous sample measured at IDEXX., expressed as Correction Factor, compared to a laboratory capillary plasma glucose standard. Other Elite meters may have different corrections, these figures were not provided by Bayer.

Multiply the Elite BG reading by the Correction Factor to get the Lab Value.

Elite BG Reading

Correction Factor

Equivalent Lab Value



















Also, a venous whole blood sample usually reads higher than a capillary sample, when read with the Test Strip on the Elite. Bayer claims about +7% higher for humans. That is, if you take blood from an ear prick and a vein at the same time, and test both bloods on the Elite, the venous blood will give a higher BG reading.

The error table above is typical of many home glucometers, and this is one reason why high BG readings on home glucometers should be taken seriously. For example a 390 reading may be closer to 470 actual, and a 500 reading is more like 640 actual. This is why the meters cut off at 500 or 600. The readings are so inaccurate at these high levels that they aren't allowed to display.

Remember, these home glucometers are designed for humans, where the typical BG range of interest is 75 - 200. The high BG's over 200 are used as warning signals for humans and most larger animals - as these are very damaging long-term, and never tolerated. Hence the accuracy of the meters is best where the control regime is desired for humans, around 100. Fortunately, cats tolerate high BGs much better than people; talk to your vet about what range to target for your pet. [from the archives of the Feline Diabetes Message Board, Posted by Jud & Call]

Which Numbers do you Believe? Meter vs. Vet vs. Outside Lab

Human diabetics trust their lives to their meters. The pattern of results you get with your meter will correspond to your pet's behavior and you will come to know what the numbers mean for your individual pet. When Harry goes over 500, he is more lethargic--he just doesn't feel very good. His volume of urine output increases (PU) and his control/ability to get to the litter box in time diminishes (more accidents). When he is around 200, he will be more alert, interested in playing, and we never have a urine accident.

You can take your meter with you and check your pet's blood glucose with an ear prick (capillary) on your meter at the same time (within 5 to 10 minutes) that the veterinarian draws blood from a vein (venous). The newer meters are all calibrated to display plasma results when capillary blood is tested, so you can directly compare the Elite results with your vet's or an outside lab. NOTE: some vets are starting to use home glucometers in their practices, ask what they use. The meter reading and laboratory values should not vary by more than 15-20 percent. If your meter reading appears to be way off from the vet's test equipment, despite passing all its Check and Control solution tests, a 3-way check by sending some of the venous blood to an outside lab can help to determine if it might be the veterinarian's lab equipment that is out of calibration. Recent ingestion of food can elevate the capillary blood up to 70 mg./dL higher than blood drawn from a vein for a lab test, reversing the pattern seen on fasting, where venous blood BGs are higher.

last updated 10/23/01