Posted: April, 2012
Let’s start with what Glucofacts® Deluxe is and is not. It is a very nice application for charting your blood glucose levels and seeing patterns in your levels using several useful graphs. It lets you analyze your testing habits by summarizing the number of test you perform and when you take those test. For all the testing I do I am still amazed at how these programs show me the gaps in my testing habits. You can print charts and logs for you to take or send to your doctor.
Glucofacts is not a meal, weight, blood pressure, insulin or medicine logging applications. For some people that may be reason enough not to use Glucofacts Deluxe. I on the other hand I loved the simplicity of the software. It does one thing, and does it very well, helps me monitor and see patterns in my glucose levels which helps me better manage my diabetes.
Glucofacts Deluxe runs as a JAVA application and therefore your computer must be running a compatible JAVA distribution. The software comes in two versions; 1) included with the Contour USB Blood Glucose Meter and; 2) as a standalone desktop application which is free from Bayer Health Care. This review covers both versions because there are only a few differences between the two. If you have the Contour USB Meter, you should read my review of that product since there is some coverage of the software installation from the meter.
If you are using the Contour USB meter, you are provided a download link on installation of the internal version to install the desktop version. If the link does not appear or if using another meter, here is were you can download Glucofacts® Deluxe (opens new window). Glucofacts Deluxe installed without incident for me and there were no firewall issues (expect for allowing the newer Java update to run the first time) or other security warnings from my anti-virus or ant-malware software. When you run the software for the first time you are asked to provide a location to store the database. (I like when software ask and not just defaults to my document folder :( . You then are asked to create a new user or choose which existing person in the database to associate the meter data too (If you already have configured your personal account). All steps were very easy and worked well for me.
Transferring data is as simple as plugging your meter in and launching the application. You can configure Glucofacts Deluxe to transfer meter data every time you connect or to ask you what to do when you do connect the meter, and you can configure the settings to auto print graphs and logs when your meter is connected. Once configured, anyone can use this software with only a few mouse clicks to transfer data and print pre-configured reports. I see this as a great benefit for people with accessibility issues or for the computer illiterate, assuming they have someone to install and configure the software.
If you wish to manually enter data, you can do that too (desktop only). Manually entered data is not transferred to your meter and is denoted in the log with a series of lines. You cannot edit a meter reading which was transferred from your meter but you can add comments to those entries.
There are five reports available in Glucofacts Deluxe, Logbook, Trend, Standard Day, Standard Week and Summary. Report date ranges are available in several preset ranges or you have the option to manually select the date range. At the bottom of each report page is a Data Analysis section. I really liked that section because it provides a clear picture of not only how many times you are testing, but what your testing patterns maybe.
Insulin therapy is all about balance and fine-tuning. It’s normal to experience a challenge or two, especially when you begin the regimen.
Yesterday, I heard a patient advocate say he was thankful for diabetes. He said, “If I had to choose a disease, type 1 diabetes isn’t a bad choice. Sometimes I feel thankful for having it.” The 40-something who said this was speaking on the radio as I was driving. I nearly swerved off the road.