Reply
Occasional Responder
AndreaAu
Total Posts: 12
Registered on: ‎03-07-2011

Home A1c kits

My insurance will pay for 1 A1C test a year, but I would like to check it every 6 months. How accurate are the home A1C kits I see in the pharmacy areas?

TIA

Type 2 diabetic
Metformin 500mg twice a day
Diet/Exercise
Diagnosed December, 2007
Last A1C: 6.4
Advisor
George_M
Total Posts: 2,233
Registered on: ‎11-16-2012

Re: Home A1c kits

My endocrinologist uses the Bayer home A1C kit in her office, to make sure she has a current A1C for her patients.

 

I used the Bayer kit once, the same day that I was getting an A1C at the lab.  The home kit read 5.7, the lab read 5.6.

George

Diagnosed T2 9/12/12, A1C 10.1
Metformin 500 mg. 1 x daily since 9/17/2012
A1C 12/13/2012 5.6
A1C 3/15/2013 5.4
A1C 11/29/2013 5.5
Weight at diagnosis 9/12/2012 288
Weight 10/01/2013 187
Super Advisor
realtxjack
Total Posts: 1,537
Registered on: ‎11-08-2009

Re: Home A1c kits

I would humbly suggest you save your money and don't worry about the A1c.  Since it's an average, you can't directly affect it.  Focus on your daily BG and A1c will fall into place.  Doctors like the A1c because it's a rough indicator of how closely you're controlling your BG between office visits.  Other than that, it doesn't do much for you.

 

 

Type 2 - complicated by surgery for pancreatic cancer
Trusted Contributor
maryd98
Total Posts: 5,456
Registered on: ‎08-07-2012

Re: Home A1c kits


realtxjack wrote:

I would humbly suggest you save your money and don't worry about the A1c.  Since it's an average, you can't directly affect it.  Focus on your daily BG and A1c will fall into place.  Doctors like the A1c because it's a rough indicator of how closely you're controlling your BG between office visits.  Other than that, it doesn't do much for you.


I think rtj has a good point here, AndreaAu. However, depending on how often you test, the A1c may give you a more accurate view of how you've been doing over the past 3 months or so. If you test often and have a clear idea of what your BG is before and after meals (as well as first thing in the morning), then the A1c is less useful than if you don't test often.

 

I understand wanting to have an A1c more than once a year (regardless of how often you test).

 

I haven't used one of the home A1c kits, but for quite a while now I've had my A1c done only at pharmacies, and I think that's the same test they use. (I kinow they don't send it off to a lab; they use an A1c "meter" that provides results in a very short time, while I wait--like a "regular" meter.) I feel pretty confident that the pharmacy test is accurate. The fact that some doctors (like George's) use the Bayer kit for the A1c test makes me feel more confident than I would otherwise.

Till next time,
maryd98
the diabetic formerly known as 14 and counting, aka Mary
-----------------------------------
Diagnosed T2 July 1998
First A1C (July 1998): 13.6
First BG (July 1998): 537
Latest A1C (August 2014): 5.7
On oral meds for about 9 months after diagnosis
"Just" diet and exercise for 15+ years
Advisor
LeadSinger
Total Posts: 508
Registered on: ‎12-07-2009

Re: Home A1c kits

I have to respectfully disagree with those who only want to see their A1c once a year or so.  Unless you are using your BG meter and testing before and after every meal as well as before going to bed and upon awakening, you really have no idea how you're doing without the A1c.  Unless that is, you don't snack at all and are almost religious about counting the carbs that enter your system at ALL times.  The A1c will give you a fairly decent idea of how  good (or bad) you have been with your dietary habits (or tests?) for the previous 3 months (give or take).  I have used it on a regular basis for over 5 years to modify my own dietary behavior as needed (doc does me every 6 months & I use the Bayer kit in the off quarters).  So far, I seem to have been doing fairly well (not to mention that at about $30 for 2 tests, it is relatively cheap).

Diagnosed T2 on 3/1/2007 with A1c of 13.0
Member of the 5% club for past 3 years
Occasional Responder
AndreaAu
Total Posts: 12
Registered on: ‎03-07-2011

Re: Home A1c kits

Thank you for your replies everybody! My old insurance paid for A1C tests twice a year so I have been used to that, we changed providers the beginning of this year, and they will only pay for once a year. I guess I just want to have my "security blanket" so to speak to check my progress periodically.

Type 2 diabetic
Metformin 500mg twice a day
Diet/Exercise
Diagnosed December, 2007
Last A1C: 6.4
Advisor
George_M
Total Posts: 2,233
Registered on: ‎11-16-2012

Re: Home A1c kits


AndreaAu wrote:

Thank you for your replies everybody! My old insurance paid for A1C tests twice a year so I have been used to that, we changed providers the beginning of this year, and they will only pay for once a year. I guess I just want to have my "security blanket" so to speak to check my progress periodically.


The kits are $32 at Walmart, and have two tests in them.  If $16 a year helps to buy you peace of mind, it is well worth it.

George

Diagnosed T2 9/12/12, A1C 10.1
Metformin 500 mg. 1 x daily since 9/17/2012
A1C 12/13/2012 5.6
A1C 3/15/2013 5.4
A1C 11/29/2013 5.5
Weight at diagnosis 9/12/2012 288
Weight 10/01/2013 187
Frequent Responder
jimssnell
Total Posts: 589
Registered on: ‎09-11-2012

Re: Home A1c kits

George: that is great price at walmart. neat!

James (Jim) W. Snell
30+ years as type 2 diabetic
40 years as Digital Microprocessor System designer
Stroke in 2007 and retired.
Metformin, Humalog Lispro, 1200 calorie Diet and 1.5 to 2 miles walking exercise A1C = 6.4
http://db2jimcaresta.com
Advisor
LeadSinger
Total Posts: 508
Registered on: ‎12-07-2009

Re: Home A1c kits

Yes, that IS a great price FOR Walmart.  I refuse to shop there and have never paid more than $30 for the kit at Target, CVS etc.

Diagnosed T2 on 3/1/2007 with A1c of 13.0
Member of the 5% club for past 3 years
Occasional Visitor
8ittall
Total Posts: 1
Registered on: ‎01-08-2014

Re: Home A1c kits

I bought the A1CNow test kit in May, 2014. It has an expiration date of June, 2015. I’ve been keeping the test kit in the refrigerator as recommended on the package instructions. Here are the results of my last 3 tests:

7/4/2014 at 2:15 pm: A1C 6.1%
7/4/2014 at 2:45 pm: A1C 6.4%
7/5/2014 at 4:00 pm: A1C 6.9%

Which if any of these test results are accurate? It’s been my understanding that person's A1C should not fluctuate that much in a 24 hour period. I can't speak for other A1C home test kits, but based on my experience with this particular product, I would never buy it again or recommend it to anyone looking for a reliable home A1C test kit.