Find Information About:

Drugs & Supplements

Get information and reviews on prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and supplements. Search by name or medical condition.

Pill Identifier

Pill Identifier

Having trouble identifying your pills?

Enter the shape, color, or imprint of your prescription or OTC drug. Our pill identification tool will display pictures that you can compare to your pill.

Get Started

My Medicine

Save your medicine, check interactions, sign up for FDA alerts, create family profiles and more.

Get Started

WebMD Health Experts and Community

Talk to health experts and other people like you in WebMD's Communities. It's a safe forum where you can create or participate in support groups and discussions about health topics that interest you.

  • Second Opinion

    Second Opinion

    Read expert perspectives on popular health topics.

  • Community


    Connect with people like you, and get expert guidance on living a healthy life.

Got a health question? Get answers provided by leading organizations, doctors, and experts.

Get Answers

Sign up to receive WebMD's award-winning content delivered to your inbox.

Sign Up

Diabetes Health Center

Font Size

Cut the Pain in Diabetes Blood Sugar Test

The Solution Is in the Palm of Your Hand, Study Shows
WebMD Health News

June 13, 2005 -- People with diabetes can check their blood sugar with a prick to their palm rather than their fingertips, which are much more sensitive to pain, say researchers.

Sherwyn Schwartz, MD, of the Diabetes and Glandular Disease Clinic in San Antonio, and colleagues presented their study in San Diego, at the American Diabetes Association's 65th Annual Scientific Sessions.

The study included 181 people with type 1 or type 2 diabetes. Blood sugar samples were taken before and after a meal. Blood was drawn from the palm or fingertips. The post-meal tests spanned up to two hours for kids and four hours for adults.

The results showed that "palm testing is a suitable alternative to fingertip testing," say the researchers.

The palm has plenty of blood capillaries and fewer pain receptors than the fingertips. Other body parts -- such as the forearm and thigh -- have also been proposed as alternate sites. But the palm is easy to access, say Schwartz and colleagues.

People with diabetes don't need a new meter for the palm test, says an American Diabetes Association news release.

Patients should check with their doctor before making the change, but this new approach looks promising for decreasing the pain of blood sugar checks.

Today on WebMD

Diabetic tools
Symptoms, diagnosis, treatment, and more.
woman flexing muscles
10 strength training exercises.
Blood sugar test
12 practical tips.
Tom Hanks
Stars living with type 1 or type 2.
kenneth fujioka, md
Can Vinegar Treat Diabetes
Middle aged person
Home Healthcare

Prediabetes How to Prevent Type 2 Diabetes
type 2 diabetes
food fitness planner