Evaluation of a bedside blood ketone sensor: The effects of acidosis, hyperglycaemia and acetoacetate on sensor performance

A. S A Khan, J. A. Talbot, K. L. Tieszen, E. A. Gardener, J. M. Gibson, J. P. New

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    Aims: To assess the performance of a handheld bedside ketone sensor in the face of likely metabolic disturbances in diabetic ketoacidosis, namely: pH, glucose and acetoacetate. Methods: The effects of pH (7.44-6.83), glucose (5-50 mmol/l) and acetoacetate (0-5 mmol/l) were examined in venous blood to investigate the accuracy of betahydroxybutyrate measurement (0-5 mmol/l) by a handheld ketone sensor. Sensor results were compared with a reference method. Linear regression models were fitted to the difference between the methods with the concentration of metabolite as the explanatory factor. Results: Decreasing pH and increasing glucose had no effect on the accuracy of the handheld ketone sensor; the gradients of the fitted lines were -0.14 and -0.003, respectively. The 95% confidence intervals were -0.7-0.4 and -0.01-0.004, respectively (P = 0.59 and 0.4, respectively). In the acetoacetate study, a positive relationship between the sensor and reference method results was found, the gradient was 0.09. The 95% confidence interval was 0.05-0.14 (P ≤ 0.001), indicating that high concentrations of acetoacetate interfere with the sensor performance. Conclusions: Acidosis and hyperglycaemia have minimal effects on the sensor performance. However, high concentrations of acetoacetate result in some over-estimation of betahydroxybutyrate. This bedside ketone sensor provides useful data over a broad range of conditions likely to be encountered during moderate to severe diabetic ketoacidosis.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)782-785
    Number of pages3
    JournalDiabetic Medicine
    Issue number7
    Publication statusPublished - Jul 2004


    • Acetoacetate
    • Glucose
    • Interference
    • Ketone sensor
    • pH


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