No more pricking the fingertip, this new device will measure Glucose Level from Sweat

By: | May 10th, 2021

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You need to prick your finger to obtain a drop of blood for blood glucose monitoring. Most people with diabetes complain about the painful finger pricks that they must endure each day.

Measuring your blood sugar won’t hurt now!

Pricking the fingertip will become history soon. Diabetes patients will be able to check their glucose levels from their sweat.

A team of researchers from the University of California San Diego’s Nano-engineering Department has built a device to measure glucose in sweat with the touch of a fingertip.

The human body is covered with tiny sweat glands…even our fingertips. We often don’t think of our fingers as particularly sweaty areas. But fingertips produce sweat at comparatively high rates and have a high density of sweat glands.

The glucose sensor developed by the team has polyvinyl alcohol (PVA) hydrogel on top of the electrochemical sensor, screen-printed onto a flexible plastic strip.

This hydrogel absorbs enough sweat when a fingertip is placed on the sensor’s hydrogel surface for one minute. Inside the sensor, glucose in the sweat can be detected by a hand-held device.

The device is over 95 % accurate in predicting blood glucose levels. It needs a finger prick only once or twice per month for calibration.

Nidhi Goyal

Nidhi is a gold medalist Post Graduate in Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences.

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