Effects of dynamic temperature and humidity stresses on point-of-care glucose testing for disaster care

Richard F. Louie, William J. Ferguson, Stephanie L. Sumner, Jimmy N. Yu, Corbin M. Curtis, Gerald J Kost

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Objective: To characterize the performance of glucose meter test strips using simulated dynamic temperature and humidity disaster conditions. Methods: Glucose oxidase-and glucose dehydrogenase-based test strips were dynamically stressed for up to 680 hours using an environmental chamber to simulate conditions during Hurricane Katrina. Paired measurements vs control were obtained using 3 aqueous reagent levels for GMS1 and 2 for GMS2. Results: Stress affected the performance of GMS1 at level 1 (P.01); and GMS2 at both levels (P.001), lowering GMS1 results but elevating GMS2 results. Glucose median-paired differences were elevated at both levels on GMS2 after 72 hours. Median-paired differences (stress minus control) were as much as ?10 mg/dL (range, ?65 to 33) at level 3 with GMS1, with errors as large as 21.9%. Glucose median-paired differences were as high as 5 mg/dL (range, ?1 to 10) for level 1 on GMS2, with absolute errors up to 24.4%. Conclusions: The duration of dynamic stress affected the performance of both GMS1 and GMS2 glucose test strips. Therefore, proper monitoring, handling, and storage of point-of-care (POC) reagents are needed to ensure their integrity and quality of actionable results, thereby minimizing treatment errors in emergency and disaster settings.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)232-240
Number of pages9
JournalDisaster Medicine and Public Health Preparedness
Issue number3
StatePublished - Oct 2012


  • Austere environments
  • Disaster preparedness
  • Hurricane Katrina
  • Medical errors
  • Quality assurance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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