Ask the Diabetes Educator Archive

12/2/03

Q:
I am trying to locate information about the effects of alcohol wipes on blood glucose levels. Can you offer her some advice? It is of interest to me as well as a midwife - just wondering if it would affect glucose levels on newborn heel sticks or preemie labs.

A:
To my knowledge, the only caution we give with alcohol wipes is that they dry out the skin. Dry skin can lead to cracking and potential infection for someone with diabetes. We advise using warm water and soap as the standard, and wipes and/or hand sanitizers when out and about. If the alcohol is not DRY before testing, there may be some concern of skewing the reading. This is also true for any dirt or food on the hand.



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