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Using a small device which is handheld or attached to the body of a patient undergoing glucose monitoring on a regular basis, a blood sample is obtained. The glucose concentration in the plasma of the patient mixes with reagents within the device and generates a signal proportional to the concentration of glucose in the sample. The result is then displayed to the patient, often through a window in the device or through a mobile application.


Test strips which identify the presence of a specific compound in a liquid sample have antibodies to the compound fixed at a certain location on the strip. When the sample is applied, fluid migration occurs with a wicking action out of the sample application spot. As the sample with the compound of interest that can bind to the fixed antibody moves along the strip, it is captured by the antibody, creating a band visible to the naked eye. For all assays involving test strips, there is also a control band which must appear to indicate that the assay is valid. If the control band is not visible, the test result is uninterpretable because it indicates a failure of the assay.

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