Effects of drugs on glucose measurements with handheld glucose meters and a portable glucose analyzer

Zuping Tang, Xiaogu Du, Richard F. Louie, Gerald J Kost

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

175 Scopus citations


Thirty drugs used primarily in critical care and hospital settings were tested in vitro to observe interference on glucose measurements with 6 handheld glucose meters and a portable glucose analyzer. Paired differences of glucose measurements between drugspiked samples and unspiked control samples were calculated to determine bias. A criterion of ± 6 mg/dL was used as the cutoff for interference. Ascorbic acid interfered with the measurements on all glucose devices evaluated. Acetaminophen, dopamine, and mannitol interfered with glucose measurements on some devices. Dose-response relationships help assessment of drug interference in clinical use. High dosages of these drugs may be given to critically ill patients or self- administered by patients without medical supervision. Package inserts for the glucose devices may not provide adequate warning information. Hence, we recommend that clinicians choose glucose devices carefully and interpret results cautiously when glucose measurements are performed during or after drug interventions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)75-86
Number of pages12
JournalAmerican Journal of Clinical Pathology
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2000


  • Compensatory electrode
  • Critical care
  • Diabetes mellitus
  • Drug interference
  • Electrochemical biosensor
  • Glucose dehydrogenase
  • Glucose oxidase
  • Glucose test strips
  • Reflectance photometric
  • Whole-blood analysis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine


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