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Ketostix Testing Strips

Mohommed Essop-Adam
Reviewed by Mohommed Essop-AdamReviewed on 30.10.2023 | 2 minutes read

Ketostix test strips detect the level of ketones in your urine. They are for people with diabetes. Ketostix is used to identify a dangerous complication of diabetes called diabetic ketoacidosis. It occurs when your body does not have enough insulin. A lack of insulin means your cells can't get enough glucose for energy. Therefore, your body must burn fat for energy instead. Ketones are a by-product of this process produced by your liver. High levels of ketones make your blood acidic. The condition can be life-threatening if not promptly treated. Some ketones leave your body in your urine, allowing for detection by Ketostix.

Ketostix test strips are mainly for people with type 1 diabetes, but some people with type 2 diabetes may need to use them if they do not produce enough insulin. They are an alternative if you do not like testing your blood. People who follow a keto diet, are fasting, or have an eating disorder like anorexia may also benefit from using Ketostix to monitor their urinary ketones. Ketostix is available on prescription and over the counter.

When should I use the product? 

It is best to speak with your doctor before using Ketostix. Your doctor will tell you when and how often you should use the product. For diabetes, usually, you should monitor for ketones when your blood sugar levels are high, you feel unwell, you are exercising a lot, you are pregnant, or your diet is low in carbohydrates.

How do I use the product?

  • Collect a sample of your urine in a container.
  • Dip the test area of a test strip into your urine sample and remove it immediately.
  • Follow the timing instructions for the product.
  • Match the test area to the colour chart on the side of the bottle and write down your result.
  • Seek urgent medical advice if the test shows you have moderate or large amounts of ketones in your urine.

How does it work?

The test area contains a chemical called sodium nitroprusside. It detects whether a ketone called acetoacetate is present in your urine. If it is, then a chemical reaction occurs, producing a colour change in the test area. The extent of the colour change depends on how much acetoacetate is present in your urine.

Who should not use the product? 

Certain medications can interfere with the test results. For example, levodopa, sodium valproate, and vitamin C can cause false-positive results. A false-positive test shows that you have ketones in your urine when you don't. If you take any medications, ask your doctor or pharmacist whether they interfere with Ketostix.

Ketostix results are less accurate than a blood ketone test. This is because Ketostix detects acetoacetate. However, beta-hydroxybutyrate is the main ketone produced by your body. Ketostix also does not show your current blood level of ketones. Instead, it shows that from a few hours ago.

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Mohommed Essop-Adam
Reviewed by Mohommed Essop-Adam
Reviewed on 30.10.2023
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