The discussion seeks to answer the question: Does SMBG reduce the blood glucose levels before and after monitoring? What are the barriers to the compliance of SMBG? Do text reminders or mobile reminders assist in complying with SMBG? Which type of reminder is preferred by patients? …
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According to the research various studies have been carried out on the impact of self reminders and the use of SMBG in the monitoring of diabetes. In a paper by Karter, et.al., the authors sought to assess the impact of self-monitoring blood glucose levels in improving blood sugar levels. Their study was carried out as a cohort design which was applied in order to detect the relation between self-monitoring frequency and the first glycosylated hemoglobin level in 1997. The authors were able to establish clear results which indicated that the use of self-monitoring blood glucose tests was also associated with lower HbA1c levels. All in all, the study revealed that with more frequent SMBG processes applied, it was possible to achieve lower glucose levels and therefore better outcomes for patients with diabetes. In yet another study by Karter and colleagues, the authors set out to establish the various barriers in the application of SMBG. Their study was a cross-sectional study which sought to evaluate SMBG use and its barriers in about 44,000 diabetic patients who were being treated in the Kaiser Permanente Northern California Region. The authors were able to establish that 60% of type 1 diabetic patients and 67% type 2 diabetic patients indicated a lesser frequency in their SMBG. Most of the reasons for their failure to carry out their SMBG included the following: longer time since diagnosis, male sex, age, ethnic minority, lower education, lower income, non-English speaking, high cost of glucometer strips, smoking, and excessive smoking. In effect, the authors were able to highlight that there were significant gaps in the actual and recommended SMBG practices in the organization covered with the dominant elements relating to ethnicity and language barriers being strong determinants of SMBG compliance. Moreover, low income also seems to impact the use of SMBG with the affordability of these strips put to issue (Karter, et.al., 2000). Despite studies proving that patients’ improved blood glucose levels with SMBG, various studies reveal that there is a lack of compliance with home blood glucose monitoring. Burge (2001) discusses that about 67% of patients with diabetes fail to routinely evaluate their blood glucose and they have various reasons for such failure. These reasons include: pain and soreness, wide variation in the recommended frequency of blood sugar monitoring, and the perception that home SMBG is less recommended in their care. The study by Burge (2001) sought to study current
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