To compare three glucose meters modified for use by individuals with diabetes and visual impairment regarding accuracy, precision, and clinical reliability.


Ten subjects with diabetes and visual impairment performed self-monitoring of blood glucose using each of the three commercially available blood glucose meters modified for visually impaired users (the AccuChek Freedom [Boehringer Mannheim, Indianapolis, IN], the Diascan SVM [Home Diagnostics, Eatontown, NJ], and the One Touch [Lifescan, Milpitas, CA]). The meters were independently evaluated by a laboratory technologist for precision and accuracy determinations.


Only two meters were acceptable with regard to laboratory precision (coefficient of variation <10%)—the Accuchek and the One Touch. The Accuchek and the One Touch did not differ significantly with regard to laboratory estimates of accuracy. A great discrepancy of the clinical reliability results was observed between these two meters. The Accuchek maintained a high degree of reliability (y = 0.99X + 0.44, r = 0.97, P = 0.001). The visually impaired subjects were unable to perform reliable testing using the One Touch system because of a lack of appropriate tactile landmarks and auditory signals.


In addition to laboratory assessments of glucose meters, monitoring systems designed for the visually impaired must include adequate tactile and audible feedback features to allow for the acquisition and placement of appropriate blood samples.

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