FreeStyle InsuLinx

The FreeStyle InsuLinx blood glucose monitor from Abbott borrows from insulin pump technology to include a mealtime insulin calculator for suggested bolus insulin injection doses.

The InsuLinx is a touchscreen, user friendly blood glucose meter which, in addition to its insulin dose calculator, can also serve as a useful logbook of your blood glucose readings, insulin doses and your carbohydrate intake.

FreeStyle InsuLinx features

As well including a bolus calculator, the InsuLinx also has:

  • Easy to use touch screen
  • An automated logbook
  • Personalization preferences such as the ability to connect it via a USB to your computer so it can be personalized with a photo of your choice
  • The FreeStyle InsuLinx easily guides you with weekly messages and pre- and post-meal markers, which is useful if you are new to diabetes
  • Data can be uploaded to Abbott’s FreeStyle Auto-Assist Software for analysis

When using the InsuLinx, there is butterfly style sensor that slots in at the bottom and contains the blood channel.

Results are instant and the InsuLinx will ask questions in order to help calculate your suggested dose.

InsuLinx calculates your carb to insulin ratio

The FreeStyle InsuLinx isn’t available from just any pharmacy or clinic but is provided by your diabetes specialist nurse, who will be able to enter your carbohydrate to insulin ratio into the meter for correct usage.

This information enables you to use the FreeStyle InsuLinx’s standout feature, its ability to suggest insulin doses.

The meter takes the following information into account to suggest a dose:

  • Your carbohydrate to insulin ratio
  • Your current blood glucose level
  • The amount of carbohydrate you are having
  • Whether you have active insulin in your body – you must input your insulin doses to ensure this part of the calculation gets accounted for

This is the InsuLinx meter from Abbott – part of it’s FreeStyle range. InsuLinx as in linking to insulin. It’s taking pump technology as some of the other meters are these days and goes beyond just testing and logging what you do.

The InsuLinx allows you to start looking at how your insulin works for you – in terms of your sensitivity and your ratios of insulin to carbohydrates. As this information is necessary and influences the dose the InsuLinx recommends for you, the InsuLinx is only available from your diabetes specialist nurse.

You need to have the knowledge about your insulin sensitivity and carbs to insulin ratio to go into the machine and set it up. The InsuLinx blood glucose system has onboard a bolus wizard. Anyone using a pump will be familiar with it and anyone using a pump won’t need one of these as the pump is pretty much already doing it.

The InsuLinx helps you to keep track of carbs and do some of the maths by using an algorithm programmed in the meter based on your insulin sensitivity and your carbs to insulin ratio to give you advice on what to dose yourself with.

They’re called boluses these days – although they were called insulin shots in the old days. This may vary at different times of the day.

It’s easy to use the sensor as there’s a little butterfly on the test strip which is a marker helping you to figure out how it works. The butterfly faces up (so you see it) and the graphic pattern at the top goes in – and the blood channel is right at the bottom.

Another great advance about the InsuLinx is that it has a large screen. It also shows you how to apply the blood. This time it’s not on the bottom – but on the side. A nice little butterfly is shown until your result is shown – and the result. It will also tell you if you have a high (or low) blood glucose.

You can also use the calculator – via the touchscreen – and it’ll ask you whether you’ve taken any rapid acting insulin and the number of units you’ve taken. You can also enter what you plan to eat which will then allow the meter to recommend your insulin dose.

So that’s one of the things you can do. Due to the level of knowledge about diabetes control you need for the InsuLinx – it requires programming from a DSN. It takes the flat, round (coin cell) batteries. You can also connect it to your computer via USB and choose a photo that you like (for the home screen).

Use of the InsuLinx may be slightly tricky for those who are new to diabetes but the guide facilities are in place to help you with this.

As a whole, the FreeStyle InsuLinx takes meter technology to the next level, as it isn’t just for blood testing.

If this is something that you may be interested i, speak to your diabetes specialist nurse to get on board. The InsuLinx is a no coding meter with a 165 days memory based on an average of 3 tests and 3 insulin logs per day. The battery life lasts for 3,000 tests.

Data can be downloaded using Abbott’s FreeStyle Auto-Assist Health Management System. Contact Abbott Diabetes Care to request the data cable.

Technical specification

The InsuLinx is a no coding meter with a 165 days memory based on an average of 3 tests and 3 insulin logs per day. The battery life lasts for 3,000 tests.

  • Blood sample size: 0.3 microlitres
  • Memory: Up to 165 days – assuming average of 3 tests and 3 insulin logs per day
  • Batteries: Three CR 2032 3V lithium batteries, two of which are replaceable
  • Battery life: Up to 3,000 tests
  • Dimensions: 60 x 95 x 15 mm
  • Weight: 59 to 66g including batteries
  • Measurement range: 1.1 to 27.8 mmol/L (20 to 500 mg/dL)
  • Haematocrit: 15% to 65%

Operating ranges

  • Operating temperature: 4° to 40° C (40 to 104°F)
  • Humidity: 5% to 90% (non-condensing)
  • Altitude: Up to 3,048m above sea level

Storage ranges

  • Storage temperature: –20° to 60° C (-4 to 140 °F)

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