Prioritizing your blood sugar levels is vital, and getting accurate readings is just as important as the routine check. Understanding the difference between interstitial fluid vs. blood glucose can provide key insight into effective diabetes management.
This article will shed light on the challenges of obtaining reliable and accurate interstitial glucose measurements, particularly regarding rapid changes in blood glucose levels. Don't worry if these terms seem technical – we're here to provide clear explanations.
The Differences Between Interstitial Glucose Levels vs. Blood Glucose Levels
Q: What Is Interstitial Glucose?
Interstitial glucose is the sugar found in the interstitial fluid between cells in the body. Interstitial fluid transports nutrients, oxygen, and waste between the body's cells. When we measure interstitial glucose, we take a sample of that fluid and measure the amount of sugar in it.
Q: What Is Blood Glucose?
Blood glucose levels are measured by the amount of glucose in the bloodstream. This measurement provides current information on glucose fluctuations. Blood glucose readings are typically taken using a fingerstick test.
Q: Can Interstitial Glucose Levels Lag Behind Blood Glucose Levels?
Yes. Because glucose enters the bloodstream first before moving into the interstitial fluid, CGM readings can be 5-15 minutes behind BGM readings.
Q: Why Is There a Delay in Interstitial Glucose Measurements?
Because glucose needs time to diffuse from the bloodstream to the interstitial fluid, interstitial measurements have a slower response than blood glucose readings.
Q: Do Physiological Differences Affect Interstitial Glucose Readings?
Yes. Factors such as tissue hydration, temperature, and blood flow variations can influence interstitial glucose levels and potentially cause deviations from actual blood glucose levels.
The Challenges in Obtaining Reliable and Accurate Interstitial Glucose Measurements
Continuous glucose monitors (CGMs) are medical devices that continually monitor glucose levels from interstitial fluid. During the calibration and ramp-up period, finger prick tests are required from some CGMs. Anytime the sensor is worn, CGMs will provide real-time results every few minutes on your monitor.
While interstitial glucose monitoring provides the advantage of less invasive testing when compared to the traditional fingerstick method, it also comes with certain challenges:
|Interstitial Glucose Measurement Challenges|
|Delay in Response||Due to the time it takes for glucose to diffuse from the bloodstream to the interstitial fluid, measurements of interstitial glucose may not immediately reflect changes in glucose levels.|
|Lag During Rapid Changes||Interstitial glucose readings might not accurately reflect rapid changes in blood sugar levels when they occur, such as during strenuous exercise or right after eating.|
|Physiological Difference||Variations in blood flow, temperature, and tissue hydration can all affect interstitial glucose levels, leading to deviations from actual blood glucose levels.|
Simplify Glucose Monitoring With POGO Automatic®
It’s important to take time to investigate your blood glucose monitoring options, to compare interstitial fluid vs. blood glucose monitors, and talk to your doctor, who can provide guidance and insights about the type of system that is right for you.
Using the right glucose monitoring device can make diabetes management easier. The POGO Automatic Monitor offers a simple, quick, and accurate way to check your blood glucose in a single step. Just load the 10-test cartridge, turn on the monitor, place your finger on the test port, and get fast and accurate results.
Further, the monitor syncs with the Patterns® for POGO Automatic app via Bluetooth, giving you real-time access to your results and trends. Set reminders, receive alerts for emergencies, and share insights with your healthcare team.
Jaclyn Owens is a product director specializing in diabetes management tools. She is committed to using technology to empower people with diabetes and help them take control of their health.
All content on this website is for educational purposes only and does not replace the guidance of your healthcare practitioner. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment and before undertaking a new healthcare regimen, and never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.
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