Two site evaluation of the performance of a new generation point-of-care glucose meter for use in a neonatal intensive care unit

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Background:Monitoring of blood glucose in neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) patients is important in maintaining normoglycaemia and reducing the risk of hypoglycaemia. Point-of-care testing (POCT) glucose meters provide short turnaround times but some have been reported to be affected by haematocrit interference and other biochemical or biological substances in their accuracy and performance. The aim of this study was to assess the performance of a new POCT glucose meter in a challenging preterm neonatal population.Methods:The new Nova Biomedical StatStrip (Nova Biomedical) was tested on 159 heparinised whole blood samples from NICU patients obtained for blood gas analysis. Accuracy (bias) of the meter and analytical interferences were evaluated by comparing the results of the meter with the results of the blood gas analyser routinely used for glucose measurements in this NICU setting.Results:The results of the StatStrip glucose meter correlated very well with the reference routine method across a wide glucose concentration range (13-389 mg/dL) and were not affected by the level of haematocrit, by sample pH or by medication.Conclusions:The StatStrip meter showed good clinical accuracy and performance for measuring and monitoring glucose levels in NICU patients, with special respect to preterm infants, and therefore can act as a perfect alternative to a blood gas analyser for measuring blood glucose in NICU patients.

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