Blood glucose monitoring

What is a blood glucose test?

A blood glucose test can also be called a blood sugar test. These tests are usually undertaken to check for or monitor diabetes.

There are two different types of test that are routinely undertaken: 

  • Oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT): for this test you are asked to fast, then have a blood sample taken, then drink a glucose drink, sit quietly and then have a number of samples taken over a few hours. This test may be undertaken if there is a risk of diabetes or if diabetes is being investigated.
  • The (fasting) plasma glucose test: the standard test to measure your blood sugar level at a particular time. You may or may not be required to fast for this test.

What is the difference between these tests?

The oral glucose tolerance test measures how you respond to glucose while the blood glucose test measures your blood sugar level at a particular time. The first test is usually used to investigate diabetic risk and the latter test is usually used for monitoring a pre-existing diabetic condition.

Why would I have this test done?

  • To identify your risk of developing diabetes, or find out if diabetes is already present.
  • For advice and support for managing your condition at home
  • To increase your understanding of possible complications relating to Diabetes.
  • To obtain a printed record of your test results for your records. This means you will have the information on hand to show other health professionals involved with your care. 

If you think you need one of these tests, feel free to call the pharmacy to talk to our pharmacist; they can also tell you the best time to come in for your test to minimise waiting time. Our phone number is (02) 9982 6383

For more information relating to Diabetes screening and management refer to "Diabetes services" under Services on our homepage or click here