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  How often do you or your child change your lancet for blood glucose checks?  
      I manually change the lancet each time  
  18%     32  
      My lancing device automatically uses a new lancet each time  
  7%     12  
      More than once a day, but not every time  
  9%     17  
      Once a day  
  24%     43  
      Every other day  
  4%     7  
      Every three days or so  
  12%     21  
      When the lancet hurts too much  
  7%     13  
      When the lancet is so dull that it stops puncturing my skin  
  14%     25  
  5%     9  

Total votes: 179

How often do you or your child change your lancet for blood glucose checks?

Poll dates: October 12 - 19, 2011
Total Votes: 179

Photo - click for larger image.
Photomicrograph from BD showing close up of insulin syringe needle after reuse. The same bending occurs in the newest thin lancets. Click for a larger image.

Ask adults with type 1 diabetes how often they change their lancet and you're likely to get a chuckle as a response. In 2007, we added two new response options to capture this reality and -- to no surprise -- a large number of people change only when the lancet bounces off the skin (14% this year).

As lancets and syringe needles have become thinner in recent years, their ability to stand up to repeated use has declined. Syringe and lancet maker BD has used photomicrographs of needles after six uses, showing the tip bent back into a fish hook shape, to caution against reuse. That image is reproduced on the right.

When a needle or lancet is bent over like this, it can cause additional trauma. In the case of lancets, that can mean more pain at the finger tips (or alternate sites). If you reuse lancets and getting blood starts hurting more than usual, it's definitely time to change the lancet.

To help you with changing lancets, the Roche Multiclix Lancing Device is highly recommended. Not only does the Multiclix hold six lancets in an internal drum, but the drum also prevents the sharp tip from being exposed when you change the drum. This means that there is no chance of an accidental stick from a used lancet.

The table below compares results of last week's poll with the same poll run over the past years.

Answer Oct 2011 Oct 2010 Oct 2009 Oct 2008 Oct 2007 Oct 2006 Oct 2005 Oct 2004 Jan 2003
Each time 18% 22% 16% 19% 22% 23% 21% 14% 27%
My device changes automatically 7% 5% 5% 4% -- -- -- -- --
More than once a day 9% 8% 10% 9% 11% 11% 12% 8% 10%
Once a day 24% 19% 16% 19% 18% 20% 21% 20% 22%
Every other day 4% 3% 3% 3% 5% 4% 3% 4% 4%
Every three days or so 12% 12% 13% 9% 10% 11% 8% 24% 24%
When the lancet hurts too much 7% 13% 11% 12% 9% 9% 9% -- -
When the lancet is so dull that it stops puncturing my skin 14% 17% 21% 18% 20% 15% 22% -- -
Other 5% 2% 2% 1% 1% 3% 2% 18% 13%

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Last Updated: Tuesday October 18, 2011 16:02:32
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