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OneTouch Blood Glucose Monitors

Medically reviewed on Nov 9, 2013 by L. Anderson, PharmD

OneTouch is a brand of small portable blood glucose (blood sugar) monitoring systems that can be used by patients with diabetes. Examples of OneTouch meters include the OneTouch Ultra 2, OneTouch UltraMini, OneTouch Ultrasmart, OneTouch Select and OneTouch Verio IQ systems. The systems typically consist of the meter, lancing device, a lancet and a carrying case. Test strips and control solutions are sold separately. Each meter offers different features, such as size of screen, memory, and result displays. User guides for each brand of meter are available on the OneTouch website.

Latest OneTouch Blood Glucose Meters

  • OneTouch Ultra 2 - The OneTouch Ultra 2 blood glucose meter can provide blood glucose results within five seconds. The monitor can provide before and after glucose averages for 7, 14, and 30 days and trends can be monitored. In addition, the effects of food choices and portion control over time can be viewed.

  • OneTouch UltraMini - The OneTouch UltraMini meter is a small, slimline blood glucose meter that is small enough to fit into a purse or pocket. It stores up to 500 previous test results in memory, and has 2-way scrolling buttons. The UltraMini also comes in six modern colors— Limelight, Pink Glow, Silver Moon, Jet Black, Purple Twilight and Blue Comet.

  • OneTouch Verio IQ - The OneTouch Verio IQ meter has a color LCD screen with larger numbers for easier viewing, lights for both the test strip port and screen for nighttime viewing, only a small sample of blood is needed and the blood can be applied to either side of the strip, which makes it more convenient for both left-handed and right-handed users. No coding is required with the OneTouch Verio IQ meter.

OneTouch Ping is a remote blood glucose monitoring system and insulin pump that work together. OneTouch UltraLink communicates wirelessly with several Medtronic MiniMed Paradigm Insulin Pumps. Refer to the specific manufacturer users guide for all information pertaining to OneTouch products.

LifeScan has discontinued the OneTouch Ultra and OneTouch UltraSmart Meters, effective December 31, 2012. This action was taken due to a shift in demand for these product and not the result of any safety issues. Lifescan Customer Service may be reached 24 hours a day, seven days a week at 1 800 227-8862.

How Do Blood Glucose Monitors they Work?

The OneTouch brand of meters measure the glucose content of a blood sample by means of an electrical current produced in the test strip. Glucose in the blood sample mixes with special chemicals in the test strip and a small electric current is produced and measured by the meter. Test results are "plasma-calibrated" (instead of whole-blood results). This makes it easier for patients and caregivers to compare meter results with laboratory tests. The meter measures the current, calculates your blood glucose level, displays the result, and stores it in memory.

Blood glucose monitoring plays an important role in diabetes control. A long-term study showed that keeping blood glucose levels close to normal can reduce the risk of diabetes complications by up to 60%.

Test results with the OneTouch Blood Glucose Monitoring System are presented in milligrams/deciliter (mg/dL), ranging from 20 to 600 mg/dL. If the glucose measurement “mg/dL” unit does not appear when results are displayed, or if the display shows mmol/L rather than mg/dL, contact LifeScan Customer Service at 1 800 227-8862 (available 24 hours a day, seven days a week). Owners of the meter cannot change the unit of measure. Use of the wrong unit of measure may cause the owner to misinterpret their blood glucose level, and lead to incorrect treatment.

Review the specific OneTouch Blood Glucose Monitoring System Owner’s Manual for all instructions on meter set-up and use, test strip and control solution use, battery information and care. A review of meter display messages, what they mean, and what action you should take is also included in the Owner’s Manual. Be sure to keep the owners manual in a safe spot for easy and quick reference.

Before Using the OneTouch Meter

If you have been using another type of meter - one that provides whole-blood results - you may notice that your test results with the OneTouch system are about 12% higher.

Use no other test strips or control solution other than specific OneTouch brand recommended for use with your meter.

Control Solutions are used to check that the blood glucose meter and test strips are working together properly and that the test is performing correctly. You should perform a control solution test:

  • Whenever you open a new vial of test strips.
  • If you suspect that the meter or test strips are not working properly.
  • If you have had repeated unexpected blood glucose results.
  • If you drop or damage the meter.
  • To practice the test process instead of using blood.
  • Once a week.

What Are Code Numbers?

Code numbers are used to calibrate your meter with the test strips you are using to obtain accurate blood sugar results. You must code the meter before using it for the first time and then every time you change to another vial of test strips. Codes are required with the OneTouch UltraMini, OneTouch UltraSmart (discontinued), OneTouch Ultra (discontinued) and the OneTouch Ultra 2. The OneTouch Verio IQ meter does not require coding.

LifeScan Blood Glucose Meters Compatible Strips Compatible Control Solution
OneTouch Ultra 2 OneTouch Ultra Blue Test Strips OneTouch Ultra Control Solution
OneTouch UltraMini OneTouch Ultra Blue Test Strips OneTouch Ultra Control Solution
OneTouch Verio IQ OneTouch Verio Test Strips OneTouch Verio Control Solution, Level 3 (Mid) or Level 4 (High)
OneTouch Ping - remote blood glucose monitoring system and insulin pump OneTouch Ultra Blue Test Strips OneTouch Ultra Control Solution
OneTouch UltraLink - blood glucose monitoring system communicates wirelessly with several Medtronic MiniMed Paradigm Insulin Pumps OneTouch Ultra Blue Test Strips OneTouch Ultra Control Solution
OneTouch UltraSmart Meter Discontinued; compatible with OneTouch Ultra Blue Test Strips OneTouch Ultra Control Solution
OneTouch Ultra Meter Discontinued; OneTouch Ultra Blue Test Strips OneTouch Ultra Control Solution

The OneTouch system is intended for use outside the body (in-vitro diagnostic use). It should be used only for testing fresh capillary whole blood samples for glucose (sugar). It should not be used for the diagnosis of diabetes or for testing newborns.

Before using any product to test your blood glucose, read all instructions and practice the test. Do all quality control checks as directed and consult with a diabetes health care professional. These recommendations apply to all blood glucose monitoring systems and are supported by the American Association of Diabetes Educators, the American Diabetes Association, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, and the Advanced Medical Technology Association.

Average Retail Costs for Various Meters

Patients who pay cash for meters can apply those costs to Flexible Spending Accounts or Health Care Spending Cards, if available.

  • OneTouch UltraMini: $20.00
  • OneTouch Verio IQ: $30.00
  • OneTouch Ultra 2 $70.00

Do You Need Help With the Cost of Your Diabetes Supplies?

OneTouch diabetes supplies can be found at most retail pharmacies.

OneTouch may be able to help you make diabetes supplies more affordable. For people who need help covering their diabetes supplies, visit or call 1-800-444-4106 to find the program that’s right for you.

OneTouch products are always covered by Medicare Part B and patients pay $0 with most supplemental health insurance. OneTouch supplies can also be ordered from various mail order houses.

Glossary and Important Information

Dehydration: Severe dehydration resulting from excessive water loss may cause false low results. If you believe you are suffering from severe dehydration, consult a healthcare professional immediately.

Low glucose results: If your test result is lower than 70 mg/dL, it may mean hypoglycemia (low blood glucose). This may require immediate treatment according to your healthcare professional's recommendations. Although this result could be due to a test error, it is safer to treat first, and then repeat the test. Temperatures lower than 43 to 50 degrees F may result in inaccurate test results. Retest in a warmer environment.

High glucose results: If your test result is greater than 180 mg/dL, it may mean hyperglycemia (high blood glucose). If you do not have symptoms, first repeat the test. Your healthcare professional can work with you to decide what actions, if any, you should take if you continue to get results higher than 180 mg/dL or if you have symptoms.

If your blood glucose is higher than 600 mg/dL, you may have severe hyperglycemia. Retest your blood glucose. If the result is over 600 mg/dL, contact your healthcare provider immediately for instructions.

Repeated unexpected results: If you continue to get unexpected results, check your system with control solution. Review your manual section on control solution testing for specific directions.

If you are experiencing symptoms that are not consistent with your blood glucose results and you have followed all instructions in this booklet, call your healthcare professional. Never ignore symptoms or make significant changes to your diabetes control program without speaking to your healthcare professional.

Hematocrit: A hematocrit (percentage of your blood that is red blood cells) that is either very high (above 55-60%) or very low (below 20-30%) can cause false results.

Comparing laboratory and meter results: Both OneTouch Meter test results and laboratory test results are both expressed in plasma-equivalent units. However, meter results may differ from laboratory results due to normal variation. The OneTouch Meter glucose value should agree within +/-20 percent under normal conditions, and that variation is considered accurate.

However, results can vary more than +/- 20 percent in some situations. Blood glucose levels can change quickly over short periods of time due to meals, exercise, hematocrit levels, dehydration, medications, environmental temperature or stress.

It is best to fast for eight hours before doing comparison tests. Check with your healthcare provider prior to fasting. See the OneTouch Test Strip Package insert for important information on guidelines for making an accurate comparison between meter and laboratory results.

To make an accurate comparison between meter and laboratory results, follow the guidelines described in the specific OneTouch Blood Glucose Monitoring System Owner’s Manual.

WARNING: Keep the meter and testing supplies away from small children. The battery door, test strips, lancets, protective disks, and control solution cap are choking hazards.

Important Test Strip Information

  • Store test strip vials in a cool, dry place below 86F (30C). Keep away from direct sunlight and heat. Do Not refrigerate.
  • Store test strips in their original vial only. To avoid damage or contamination, Do Not transfer test strips to any other place.
  • After removing a test strip from the vial, replace the vial cap immediately and close it tightly.
  • Use each test strip immediately after removing it from the vial.
  • Do Not use test strips from any vial that is damaged or left open to air.
  • Write the discard date (3 months after first opening the vial) on the vial label when you first open it. Discard remaining OneTouch Test Strips after the discard date. Do Not use test strips beyond the expiration (printed on package) or discard date, whichever comes first, because they may cause inaccurate results.
  • Avoid getting dirt, food or liquids on the test strip. With clean, dry hands, you may touch the test strip anywhere on its surface.
  • Do Not bend, cut, or alter a OneTouch Ultra Test Strip in any way.
  • OneTouch Test Strips are for single use only. Never reuse a test strip that has had either blood or control solution applied to it.
  • Apply only OneTouch Control Solution or a blood sample to the test strip.
  • If you’re using a OneTouch UltraMini or OneTouch® Ultra 2 Meter, be sure to get OneTouch Ultra Blue Test Strips—the only test strips that will work with your meter.
  • In the U.S., you can find OneTouch Test Strips at pharmacies where diabetes products are sold.
  • Refer to additional information in the OneTouch Test Strip package.

WARNING: Do not swallow test strips. The test strip vial may contain drying agents that are harmful if inhaled or swallowed and may cause skin or eye irritation.

CONTACT INFORMATION: For additional information, call your healthcare provider or Lifescan Customer Service at 1 800 227-8862.


OneTouch Website. Lifescan.

See Also

Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.