Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
J Med Econ. 2014 Mar;17(3):167-75. doi: 10.3111/13696998.2013.873722. Epub 2014 Feb 3.

Frequency of blood glucose testing among insulin-treated diabetes mellitus patients in the United Kingdom.

Author information

  • 1IMS Health , 1725 Duke St, Suite 510, Alexandria, VA , USA.



Through a retrospective database analysis, this study seeks to provide an understanding of the utilization of SMBG by insulin therapy and diabetes type and to estimate healthcare costs of blood glucose monitoring in the UK diabetes population.


Data were obtained from the IMS LifeLink Electronic Medical Record-Europe (EMR-EU) Database, a longitudinal database containing anonymized patient records from physician-practice data systems of office-based physicians in the UK. Depending on the insulin types used for type 1 and type 2 diabetes, patients were sub-categorized into one of four insulin regimen groups (basal, bolus, pre-mixed, or basal-bolus). Frequency of blood glucose testing was assessed descriptively throughout the 12-month post-index period, and generalized linear models were used to evaluate the effect of baseline characteristics, including insulin type, on the likelihood of blood glucose test utilization. Healthcare resource utilization and costs for all-cause services were assessed by insulin type.


This study identified 8322 type 1 and type 2 diabetes patients with two insulin pharmacy records between January 1, 2009 and December 31, 2010. After applying study inclusion and exclusion criteria, a total of 2676 (32.2%) insulin-treated diabetes mellitus patients in the UK were identified, with the number of pharmacy blood glucose test strips averaging 771.1 (median 600). The glucose testing frequency was lowest among basal-only insulin patients and pre-mixed insulin patients (mean=576.2 [median=450] and mean=599.5 [median=500], respectively; non-significantly different) compared to other insulin types.


Although the data did not capture the glucose frequency comprehensively, it varied significantly by insulin types, and was higher than what is recommended in the guidelines for patients with type 2 diabetes.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Taylor & Francis
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk