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How many ketone strips do you use monthly

Discussion in 'Parents of Children with Type 1' started by bibrahim, Jul 1, 2011.

  1. bibrahim

    bibrahim Approved members

    Jan 31, 2011
    I am going to ask my CWD's endo to write an RX for blood ketone strips and I notice only 10 come to a box. How many boxes do you get monthly, and how many will insurance approve?
  2. hawkeyegirl

    hawkeyegirl Approved members

    Nov 15, 2007
    I don't know how many our insurance will approve, but I think we got three boxes of them early on, and are still on our first or second box 3.5 years into this.

    We just never check for ketones unless he's sick, and that's so rare that...well, we almost never check for ketones.
  3. Brenda

    Brenda Junior Member

    Oct 19, 2005
    Depends. We rarely used them except in case of illness. So, I'd estimate we used 12-15 per year. That said, pumpers may use more than that when/if they are having issues with infusion sets coming out. I'd recommend you get three boxes, if allowed by your insurance. More than that and you run into the issue of expired strips. The meter will not work properly if the strips have expired.
  4. wilf

    wilf Approved members

    Aug 27, 2007
    Maybe one.. :cwds:
  5. emm142

    emm142 Approved members

    Sep 7, 2008
    Probably around 1-2 per month. If I even got a box per month they'd be piling up pretty fast!
  6. Lisa P.

    Lisa P. Approved members

    May 19, 2008
    We haven't found a good answer on that one. What we find is that when we do need them, we can go through nearly a box with one episode, two boxes if we're sick. But when we don't need them, we don't need them at all. So if expiration wasn't an issue, I'd probably want about four to six boxes for a year. But we can't just get one box every other month, because then when we need them we don't have enough that aren't expired. But ordering one box a month is really excessive and feels wasteful.

    So what I've wound up doing is just having the prescription available for if we need them, which is not ideal since a local pharmacy might take some time to get them.

    It's a pain.
  7. Diana

    Diana Approved members

    Aug 23, 2006
    I have a prescription written for 3 boxes a month that I fill once maybe twice a year. I requested this for exactly the reasons Lisa described. We hardly ever use ketone strips, but when we do, we use a lot. And I didn't want to run into a situation where I filled the prescription, ran through the box, but then couldn't get more because I had to wait another month.
  8. hdm42

    hdm42 Approved members

    May 1, 2008
    Our script was for 1 box a month, but we went through a lot of illness over the winter and we went through our entire supply. I had our ped write a new script for 3 boxes (test 1x per day), and I just fill it when I need it.
  9. Michelle'sMom

    Michelle'sMom Approved members

    Aug 21, 2009
    Our Rx is for 2 boxes per month. We don't use them at all unless she's sick.

    The past school year was rough...4 stomach viruses, 2 respiratory viruses, influenza B..plus we did 12 days on prednisone for a skin problem. After all of that I've learned 4 boxes is a safe supply for us to have on hand, especially since the local pharmacy takes a week to get them.
  10. Scribe

    Scribe Approved members

    May 26, 2009
    I haven't had ketone strips in the house since 1969. Not sure when the last time I used one, but it's been at least that long.
  11. TheFormerLantusFiend

    TheFormerLantusFiend Approved members

    Sep 10, 2006
    I buy them without using insurance. For the first four years, I used urine ketone strips when I was high or sick (or both) and that came out to between 1 and 2 vials per year.
    Then I started running urine ketones all the time, so I ran through the vials quickity quick. I bought a NovaMax ketone meter with two strips when I was vomiting and used both of those strips; I then bought a box of ten strips and have used three of those (in addition to many of the urine ones). I test with blood if the urine ketones are large (or very large) or if I'm too dehydrated to pee.
  12. kimmcannally

    kimmcannally Approved members

    Feb 28, 2010
    I test J if his BG is rising and there is not a good reason for it - he hasn't eaten, the BG just keeps rising and I suspect his site or insulin is going bad. He has had a lot of insulin go bad this summer!

    I think it was earlier this week that I decided to test (it's still pretty rare for me to test him) and he was 0.3. For him, that is ketones. He is always 0.0 unless something is wrong. Sure enough, his BG just kept climbing until I changed out his insulin, then it started coming down within about two hours.

    So the ketone strips are really handy to tell me if it's a growth spurt/hormones, a fat spike, maybe he snuck food etc, or if something is up with his site or insulin.
  13. denise3099

    denise3099 Approved members

    Jul 31, 2009
    really none. dd never gets ketones. Plus i wouldn't do anything diffeently if she had ketones and high bs--push insulin and fluids. I guess if she were sick and had ketones with normal bs, but that's never happened.
  14. bisous

    bisous Approved members

    May 21, 2007
    We probably use one box per year but we VERY rarely get ketones. They are incredibly nice to have on hand, though, during illness. Ideally, I'd try to have two to three boxes and see how long they last you! I know some kids get ketones really easily.
  15. giddyup_go

    giddyup_go Approved members

    Dec 15, 2008
    I don't know how many our insurance will approve. We get ours through Medco by mail order. We get 15 boxes every 3 months (so 150 strips) and sometimes we use them all up, sometimes we don't. We check any time her BG is over 250 and when she is sick. Sometimes I use common sense though and check for ketones even if she isn't over 250.

    For example, last night at bedtime she was 84. She was on a -30% temp basal because she'd had a softball game yesterday evening that was 3 hours long. She also had about 1 unit on board, so I gave her a 15 carb snack uncovered. 2 hours later she was 124 with no IOB. Things were looking great.

    Around 11pm, the temp basal went off and then at midnight her basal increases anyway...so if anything she would have come down by the 2am check. However, she was 175, so I knew something was wonky. So I checked and she had .4 ketones on the meter (small ketones). So I changed her set since she was due for a set change today anyway. She wasn't over 250, but I didn't need to let her go high and then check ketones.

    Anyway, I guess the amount you have on hand really depends on how easily your child develops ketones and whether or not you'll use urine strips during waking hours (we don't, we only use blood ketone strips).

    The only other times we check for ketones is if she's ill, which thankfully isn't very often.

    Edited to add that when she was on MDI we very rarely tested for ketones because with Lantus she just never got them. She gets them fairly easily now, so if anything goes wrong with her set, she'll have ketones in a couple of hours at the latest. She likes to take very long baths (like an hour and a half...I get jealous, lol) and she disconnects. If I don't remind her to hook up at the 1 hour mark to give a small bolus, then she'll have ketones by the end of her bath.
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2011
  16. mom24grlz

    mom24grlz Approved members

    Mar 30, 2010
    Our prescription is written for 1 box (10 strips) monthly. We hardly ever use them, maybe 2-3 times a month if that. She has never had ketones before, though.
  17. dqmomof3

    dqmomof3 Approved members

    Dec 29, 2007
    I'm not sure I even have a script for them anymore. I just never use them! When we first started pumping, I used them on occasion, but Jayden rarely has ketones. Can't remember the last time...

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