This content is created for Diabetes Mine, a consumer health blog focused on the diabetes community. The content is not medically reviewed and doesn't adhere to Healthline's editorial guidelines.
Please note that we are unable to respond back directly to your questions or provide medical advice. We were excited to hear the news recently that the all-in-one Dario meter is finally available here in the United States. Old Chemstrips could be cut in half, even thirds, but that was the kind with the color-coded bottle "80, 140, what the heck, you're fine" BG reading chart. I am a diabetes educator and always tried to give people any extra strips we had when needed but they were always very expensive for our dept to purchase. As the fastest growing consumer health information site a€” with 65 million monthly visitors a€” Healthlinea€™s mission is to be your most trusted ally in your pursuit of health and well-being. Both of which will support, guide, and inspire you toward the best possible health outcomes for you and your family. Not quite the 2-liter volcano like we made back in grade school, but educational and fun all the same!{Got your own questions?
Then i was on twitter and this new company has a plan for uninsured folks like me thats only 14.99 a month!!!! A meter is a meter.It shouldn't matter, and I've been a meter whore since I was diagnosed, using whatever I could get my paws on, frequently moving from one platform to another.
Any strip that doesn't give them a kick-back isn't "medically necessary," and therefore isn't covered. Because, after all, health insurance is a business and has nothing to do with health.So with the iBG Star sucking some serious dinero out of my checkbook a€” like 10% of my gross pay a€” I decided that desperate times call for desperate measures. For years I've heard anecdotally about people cutting strips in half, but couldn't find any real "case reports," so I suspect this is urban myth. Last weekend, instead of helping my 10-year old son Rio with his science homework, I recruited him to help me try to figure out how to recycle test strips.

After dissecting a strip and studying it, I decided that a drop of blood, wet or dry, completes a circuit. I licked the blood off a used strip (one of my own, of course) and plugged it back into the iBG Star.
We then tried soaking used strips in alcohol, milk, hot water, Evan Williams, you name it, to get the blood out. They "work" only in that you can trick the meter into thinking a used strip is a new strip. Some of our test readings were dead on the second time around, but fully half of them had crazy-off numbers.
In fact, AgraMatrix's Presto, Jazz, and iBG Star strips all appear identical both inside and outside. Now, of course it's possible that the chemicals inside really are different, but to the naked eye there is only one difference: the notch. The Presto strip's notch is deeper than the iBG Star strip's notch.We tried masking down the notch of a cheaper Presto strip with tape, but those sneaky engineers at AgaMatrix knew there were people like you and I out there, damn it. When you try and tape something over the notch to make it smaller, it makes the strip thicker, and then it doesn't fit into the meter slot anymore.But Jazz strips have no notch at all. So using an X-Acto Knife I cut an iBG Star-sized notch in a Jazz strip and, low and behold, it worked just fine. Of course the problem is that it takes quite a bit of time to notch the strip, and Jazz strips are almost as expensive as the iBG Star strips, so what's the point?And it also doesn't let you "reuse" like you had hoped for. It's just a time-intensive way of repurposing one expensive strip to stand in for another expensive strip. We are PWDs freely and openly sharing the wisdom of our collected experiences a€” our been-there-done-that knowledge from the trenches.

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