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CFD May Be Using Bad Glucose Test Strips

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A Chicago Fire Department Ambulance (Tim Boyle/Getty Images)

A Chicago Fire Department Ambulance (Tim Boyle/Getty Images)

CBS Chicago (con't)

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CHICAGO (WBBM) – Inaccurate glucose testing strips could potentially cause problems for Chicago paramedics and the patients they treat, WBBM Newsradio 780 has learned.

As Newsradio 780’s Steve Miller reports, millions of glucose testing strips are part of a nationwide recall by Abbott. Now, there is word that the testing strips used by the Chicago Fire Department paramedics are part of the recall.

LISTEN: Newsradio 780’s Steve Miller Reports

“All of the strips we have, they will be replaced,” said Fire Department Media Affairs Director Larry Langford. The current inventory of strips will be gone by Monday.

But in the meantime, paramedics are being told to continue the use of the glucose strips, even though they might show abnormally low and incorrect blood sugar readings.

“The resource hospital, as well as the paramedics, do know that there is a chance of inaccuracy, and they take that into account in making a diagnosis,” Langford said.

Langford added that transport times to hospitals are very short, and hospitals re-test with their own equipment.

Abbott Labs is recalling 359 million glucose test strips for false readings.

The test strips, which were manufactured between January and May 2010, are sold both in retail and online settings directly to consumers, but are also used in health care facilities.

For information on specific brands and lot numbers affected, click here.

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