Diabetes mellitus is an excellent case study of the evolution, and successful application, of point-of-care testing. It offers a valuable history of the way in which technology has evolved, and continues to evolve, to meet the needs of patients whilst also providing for a more optimal delivery of care. Diabetes mellitus is also a good exemplar of where test and treatment regimes must operate in complete harmony in order to achieve the greatest benefit. Thus whilst the measurement of blood glucose is central to the screening, diagnosis and management of diabetes, it is in the latter use, largely related to supporting compliance with therapy, that point-of-care testing is of greatest relevance. In addition, there are other tests, more associated with the management of diabetes and early detection of the complications associated with diabetes, that are appropriate to the point-of-care testing modality. This Review will focus on the developments in technology and the harnessing of this innovation to support the delivery of clinical, organisational and economic benefits in the care of patients with diabetes mellitus.
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