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A1c Diabetes Canada

Have Diabetes? It Depends On What Country You're In

Have Diabetes? It Depends On What Country You're In

Open this photo in gallery: "So, Dr. Q, do I have it or not?" asked Michael, a 47-year-old man who had just returned from Michigan. His wife, my patient, had brought him in to see me to clarify his diagnosis. He had undergone blood tests in Detroit and was told by his doctor there that he had diabetes. Upset and disbelieving, he refused to take medications. Once in Canada, he went to see his own family doctor. After doing blood tests here, his Canadian physician told him he was fine - and that he did not have diabetes. "Well, yes and no," I had to reply. It was an unusual situation based on different diabetes-testing criteria in the United States and Canada. The same patient with the same results can be told that he either has or does not have the condition. "Michael, both your doctors are right. In Michigan, you have diabetes. In Toronto, you don't." That didn't seem to help his peace of mind. Doctors are supposed to be without borders, and the diagnosis of common conditions should not change between countries that share so much. But American physicians are diagnosing diabetes even more aggressively than their Canadian counterparts. In January, 2010, the American Diabetes Association essentially made it easier for patients to be diagnosed with diabetes by adding the important Hemoglobin A1C test to the diagnostic list. Now, in the United States, a HbA1C level greater than 6.5 per cent means you have diabetes. Previously, the U.S. gold standard test for diabetes was an overnight fasting sugar (glucose) level of 7.0 millimoles per litre of blood or higher. That still holds for Canada. In fact, Canadian doctors are not even supposed to do the HbA1C test until a person has been fully diagnosed with diabetes by the usual fasting glucose tests. The HbA1C test is used only to Continue reading >>

My Site - Chapter 9: Monitoring Glycemic Control

My Site - Chapter 9: Monitoring Glycemic Control

Glycated hemoglobin (A1C) is a valuable indicator of glycemic treatment effectiveness and should be measured at least every 3 months when glycemic targets are not being met and when antihyperglycemic therapy is being adjusted. In some circumstances, such as when significant changes are made to therapy or during pregnancy, it is appropriate to check A1C more frequently. Awareness of all measures of glycemiaself-monitored blood glucose results, including self-monitored blood glucose (SMBG), flash glucose monitoring (FGM), continous glucose monitoring (CGM) and A1Cprovides the best information to assess glycemic control. Self-monitoring of blood glucose, FGM and CGM should not be viewed as glucose-lowering interventions, but rather as aids to assess the effectiveness of glucose-lowering interventions and to prevent and detect hypoglycemia. Timing and frequency of SMBG may be determined individually based on the type of diabetes, the type of antihyperglycemic treatment prescribed, the need for information about blood glucose levels and the individual's capacity to use the information from testing to modify healthy behaviours or self-adjust antihyperglycemic agents. SMBG, FGM and CGM linked with a structured educational and therapeutic program designed to facilitate behaviour change can improve blood glucose levels and prevent hypoglycemia. A1C is a measurement of your average blood glucose control for the last 2 to 3 months. Approximately 50% of the value comes from the last 30 days. You should have your A1C measured every 3 months when your blood glucose targets are not being met or when you are making changes to your diabetes management. In some circumstances, such as when significant changes are made to your glucose-lowering therapy or during pregnancy, your health-care Continue reading >>

Glycohemoglobin (hba1c, A1c)

Glycohemoglobin (hba1c, A1c)

Test Overview A glycohemoglobin test, or a hemoglobin A1c, is a blood test that checks the amount of sugar (glucose) bound to the hemoglobin in the red blood cells. This test also is called a glycated hemoglobin (A1c) test. When hemoglobin and glucose bond, a coat of sugar forms on the hemoglobin. That coat gets thicker when there's more sugar in the blood. A1c tests measure how thick that coat has been over the past 3 months, which is how long a red blood cell lives. People who have diabetes or other conditions that increase their blood glucose levels have more glycohemoglobin (sugar bound to hemoglobin) than normal. An A1c test can be used to diagnose prediabetes or diabetes. The A1c test checks the long-term control of blood glucose levels in people with diabetes. Most doctors think checking an A1c level is the best way to check how well a person is controlling his or her diabetes. A home blood glucose test measures the level of blood glucose only at that moment. Blood glucose levels change during the day for many reasons, including medicine, diet, exercise, and the level of insulin in the blood. It is useful for a person who has diabetes to have information about the long-term control of blood sugar levels. The A1c test result does not change with any recent changes in diet, exercise, or medicines. Glucose binds to hemoglobin in red blood cells at a steady rate. Since red blood cells last 3 to 4 months, the A1c test shows how much glucose is in the plasma part of blood. This test shows how well your diabetes has been controlled in the last 2 to 3 months and whether your diabetes treatment plan needs to be changed. The A1c test can also help your doctor see how big your risk is of developing problems from diabetes, such as kidney failure, vision problems, and leg or Continue reading >>

My Site - Chapter 3: Definition, Classification And Diagnosis Of Diabetes, Prediabetes And Metabolic Syndrome

My Site - Chapter 3: Definition, Classification And Diagnosis Of Diabetes, Prediabetes And Metabolic Syndrome

The chronic hyperglycemia of diabetes is associated with significant long-term microvascular and cardiovascular complications. A fasting plasma glucose of 7.0 mmol/L, a 2-hour plasma glucose value in a 75 g oral glucose tolerance test of 11.1 mmol/L or a glycated hemoglobin (A1C) of 6.5% can predict the development of retinopathy. This permits the diagnosis of diabetes to be made on the basis of each of these parameters. The term prediabetes refers to impaired fasting glucose, impaired glucose tolerance or an A1C of 6.0% to 6.4%, each of which places individuals at increased risk of developing diabetes and its complications. There are 2 main types of diabetes. Type 1 diabetes occurs when the pancreas is unable to produce insulin. Type 2 diabetes occurs when the pancreas does not produce enough insulin or when the body does not effectively use the insulin that is produced. Gestational diabetes is a type of diabetes that is first recognized or begins during pregnancy. Monogenic diabetes is a rare disorder caused by genetic defects of beta cell function. Prediabetes refers to blood glucose levels that are higher than normal, but not yet high enough to be diagnosed as type 2 diabetes. Although not everyone with prediabetes will develop type 2 diabetes, many people will. You should discuss the type of diabetes you have with your diabetes health-care team. There are several types of blood tests that can be done to determine if a person has diabetes and, in most cases, a confirmatory blood test is required to be sure. Diabetes mellitus is a heterogeneous metabolic disorder characterized by the presence of hyperglycemia due to impairment of insulin secretion, defective insulin action or both. The chronic hyperglycemia of diabetes is associated with relatively specific long-ter Continue reading >>

5 Ways To Lower Your A1c

5 Ways To Lower Your A1c

For some, home blood sugar testing can be an important and useful tool for managing your blood sugar on a day-to-day basis. Still, it only provides a snapshot of what’s happening in the moment, not long-term information, says Gregory Dodell, MD, assistant clinical professor of medicine, endocrinology, diabetes, and bone disease at Mount Sinai Health System in New York City. For this reason, your doctor may occasionally administer a blood test that measures your average blood sugar level over the past two to three months. Called the A1C test, or the hemoglobin A1C test, this provides a more accurate picture of how well your type 2 diabetes management plan is working. Taking the A1C Test If your diabetes is well controlled and your blood sugar levels have remained stable, the American Diabetes Association recommends that you have the A1C test two times each year. This simple blood draw can be done in your doctor's office. Some doctors can use a point-of-care A1C test, where a finger stick can be done in the office, with results available in about 10 minutes. The A1C test results provide insight into how your treatment plan is working, and how it might be modified to better control the condition. Your doctor may want to run the test as often as every three months if your A1C is not within your target range. What the A1C Results Mean The A1C test measures the glucose (blood sugar) in your blood by assessing the amount of what’s called glycated hemoglobin. “Hemoglobin is a protein within red blood cells. As glucose enters the bloodstream, it binds to hemoglobin, or glycates. The more glucose that enters the bloodstream, the higher the amount of glycated hemoglobin,” Dr. Dodell says. An A1C level below 5.7 percent is considered normal. An A1C between 5.7 and 6.4 perce Continue reading >>

6 Ways To Lower Your A1c Level

6 Ways To Lower Your A1c Level

Diabetes is a serious, chronic disease that can lead to many complications. When managed properly, diabetes does not have to control your life or ruin your health. Getting tested, especially if you are at risk for developing type 2 diabetes, is a proactive measure you can take for yourself and your future. In the early stages of diabetes, there are no symptoms. An early diagnosis helps you get treatment before complications occur. The A1C test is a blood test that checks for type 2 diabetes. It is also used to see how well you are managing your diabetes if you have already been diagnosed. The test provides information about a person’s average levels of blood sugar over a two- to three-month period. The number is reported in the form of a percentage. The higher the percentage, the higher your average blood glucose levels are, and the higher your risk for either diabetes or related complications. A1C is one of the primary tests used for diabetes diagnosis and management. It can test for type 1 and type 2 diabetes, but it can’t test for gestational diabetes. It can also be used to predict the likelihood that someone will get diabetes. The A1C test measures how much glucose, or sugar, is attached to hemoglobin, the protein in red blood cells. The more glucose attached, the higher the A1C. This test is groundbreaking, as it 1) doesn’t require fasting, 2) gives a picture of blood sugar levels over a period of days and weeks instead of at just one point in time like fasting sugars, and 3) can be done at any time of day. This makes it easier to administer and easier to make accurate diagnoses. According to the National Institutes of Health, a normal A1C is below 5.7 percent. If your score is between 5.7 and 6.4 percent, the diagnosis is prediabetes. Having prediabetes put Continue reading >>

Whats The Difference Between A1c And Blood Glucose Levels?

Whats The Difference Between A1c And Blood Glucose Levels?

Home Living Well With Diabetes -Articles Monitoring Blood glucose monitoring Whats the difference between A1C and blood glucose levels? Whats the difference between A1C and blood glucose levels? Blood sample for HbA1c test, diabetes diagnosis Checking your A1C as well as your blood glucose levels are things youll do when you have diabetes. Thats because they are both key markers in determining whether your blood sugar levels are within the ideal target range to keep you healthy. So whats the difference between your A1C and blood glucose level? Heres a closer look at what each one means in relation to managing your diabetes. Checking your blood glucose (or blood sugar) levels gives you a reading of how much sugar is in your blood at any time. Its important because it can tell you if your blood sugar levels are too high (hyperglycemia) or too low ( hypoglycemia) so you can treat accordingly. Certain foods and beverages, exercise and the medication you take can affect your blood glucose levels. Stress and illness can also have an impact. For example, sugar levels may rise after a short burst of activity or when youre feeling particularly anxious. You can check your blood sugar levels at home using a portable device called a blood glucose meter. Ideally, your blood glucose level before a meal should be between 4.0 to 7.0 mmol/L. Two hours after a meal the level should be between 5.0 to 10.0 mmol/L. Find more on blood sugar level targets when you have diabetes in this article. Also called hemoglobin a1c or Hba1c, an A1C test is often used to diagnose diabetes initially and then to ensure youre keeping your blood sugar levels in check over an extended period of time. Given that the average red blood cell lives for several months, this test determines your average blood sugar Continue reading >>

What Is A1c And Why Is It Important?

What Is A1c And Why Is It Important?

People with diabetes test their blood glucose with a blood glucose monitor. Your diabetes educators can teach you how, why and when to test your blood glucose. These blood glucose tests give you immediate results. The A1C blood test shows what a person's average blood glucose level was for the 2 to 3 months before the test. Red blood cells are made of a molecule - hemoglobin - that picks up oxygen in the blood and that gives the blood its colour. Blood glucose sticks on to the hemoglobin red blood cell to make it a "glycosylated hemoglobin" molecule called hemoglobin A1C. The results of your A1C test can tell you and your healthcare team how well your diabetes was controlled over the last 2-3 months. The Canadian Diabetes Association Guidelines recommend that most people with diabetes have an A1C level of less than 7%. These recommendations should be individualized by the healthcare professional based on age, duration of diabetes, risk of severe hypoglycemia, presence or absence of cardiovascular disease, and life expectancy of each person. Ask your healthcare team what your A1C number is. This A1C blood test should be repeated every 3 months or as necessary. Continue reading >>

Hemoglobin A1c Test (hba1c)

Hemoglobin A1c Test (hba1c)

Hemoglobin A1c, often abbreviated HbA1c, is a form of hemoglobin (a blood pigment that carries oxygen) that is bound to glucose. The blood test for HbA1c level is routinely performed in people with type 1 and type 2 diabetes mellitus. Blood HbA1c levels are reflective of how well diabetes is controlled. The normal range for level for hemoglobin A1c is less than 6%. HbA1c also is known as glycosylated, or glycated hemoglobin. HbA1c levels are reflective of blood glucose levels over the past six to eight weeks and do not reflect daily ups and downs of blood glucose. High HbA1c levels indicate poorer control of diabetes than levels in the normal range. HbA1c is typically measured to determine how well a type 1 or type 2 diabetes treatment plan (including medications, exercise, or dietary changes) is working. How Is Hemoglobin A1c Measured? The test for hemoglobin A1c depends on the chemical (electrical) charge on the molecule of HbA1c, which differs from the charges on the other components of hemoglobin. The molecule of HbA1c also differs in size from the other components. HbA1c may be separated by charge and size from the other hemoglobin A components in blood by a procedure called high pressure (or performance) liquid chromatography (HPLC). HPLC separates mixtures (for example, blood) into its various components by adding the mixtures to special liquids and passing them under pressure through columns filled with a material that separates the mixture into its different component molecules. HbA1c testing is done on a blood sample. Because HbA1c is not affected by short-term fluctuations in blood glucose concentrations, for example, due to meals, blood can be drawn for HbA1c testing without regard to when food was eaten. Fasting for the blood test is not necessary. What Are Continue reading >>

Should A1c Targets Be Individualized For All People With Diabetes?

Should A1c Targets Be Individualized For All People With Diabetes?

Diabetes guidelines and organizations typically advocate a target glycated hemoglobin (A1C) value of 6.5–7.0% but highlight that glycemic management must be individualized. Whereas individualization of both glycemic targets and management is appealing to the clinician as a way of potentially maximizing benefit while minimizing risk, there is little evidence that such an approach will bring more patients to target. It may be argued that this approach could contribute to fewer patients attaining optimal glycemic targets. Nonetheless, the results of recent large outcome trials clearly highlight the fact that individual glycemic target achievement varied markedly, with some patients apparently deriving more clinical benefit and others deriving more harm. At the same time, there is ongoing evidence of a treatment gap in many surveys of clinical practice and a suggestion that algorithm-driven protocols may be more effective. Collectively, therefore, the currently available evidence suggests that algorithm-driven protocols that incorporate individualized targets based on patient characteristics designed to preserve a sound balance between the benefits and risk of good glycemic control may be an appropriate way of getting more patients to target in a safe and effective manner. Over 280 million people worldwide are known to have diabetes (1), and this number is projected to grow to 438 million by 2030 (2). Current diabetes treatment guidelines (3–9) encourage a multifaceted therapeutic approach (10,11). Central to these recommendations is early diagnosis and active intervention to realize and maintain glycemic control, with the aim of stopping the development of microvascular complications, reducing the risk of macrovascular events, and ameliorating the symptoms of acute hyp Continue reading >>

Glycohemoglobin (hba1c, A1c)

Glycohemoglobin (hba1c, A1c)

Test Overview A glycohemoglobin test, or a hemoglobin A1c, is a blood test that checks the amount of sugar (glucose) bound to the hemoglobin in the red blood cells. This test also is called a glycated hemoglobin (A1c) test. When hemoglobin and glucose bond, a coat of sugar forms on the hemoglobin. That coat gets thicker when there's more sugar in the blood. A1c tests measure how thick that coat has been over the past 3 months, which is how long a red blood cell lives. People who have diabetes or other conditions that increase their blood glucose levels have more glycohemoglobin (sugar bound to hemoglobin) than normal. An A1c test can be used to diagnose prediabetes or diabetes. The A1c test checks the long-term control of blood glucose levels in people with diabetes. Most doctors think checking an A1c level is the best way to check how well a person is controlling his or her diabetes. A home blood glucose test measures the level of blood glucose only at that moment. Blood glucose levels change during the day for many reasons, including medicine, diet, exercise, and the level of insulin in the blood. It is useful for a person who has diabetes to have information about the long-term control of blood sugar levels. The A1c test result does not change with any recent changes in diet, exercise, or medicines. Glucose binds to hemoglobin in red blood cells at a steady rate. Since red blood cells last 3 to 4 months, the A1c test shows how much glucose is in the plasma part of blood. This test shows how well your diabetes has been controlled in the last 2 to 3 months and whether your diabetes treatment plan needs to be changed. The A1c test can also help your doctor see how big your risk is of developing problems from diabetes, such as kidney failure, vision problems, and leg or Continue reading >>

A1c Test

A1c Test

Print Overview The A1C test is a common blood test used to diagnose type 1 and type 2 diabetes and then to gauge how well you're managing your diabetes. The A1C test goes by many other names, including glycated hemoglobin, glycosylated hemoglobin, hemoglobin A1C and HbA1c. The A1C test result reflects your average blood sugar level for the past two to three months. Specifically, the A1C test measures what percentage of your hemoglobin — a protein in red blood cells that carries oxygen — is coated with sugar (glycated). The higher your A1C level, the poorer your blood sugar control and the higher your risk of diabetes complications. Why it's done An international committee of experts from the American Diabetes Association, the European Association for the Study of Diabetes and the International Diabetes Federation, recommend that the A1C test be the primary test used to diagnose prediabetes, type 1 diabetes and type 2 diabetes. After a diabetes diagnosis, the A1C test is used to monitor your diabetes treatment plan. Since the A1C test measures your average blood sugar level for the past two to three months instead of your blood sugar level at a specific point in time, it is a better reflection of how well your diabetes treatment plan is working overall. Your doctor will likely use the A1C test when you're first diagnosed with diabetes. This also helps establish a baseline A1C level. The test may then need to be repeated while you're learning to control your blood sugar. Later, how often you need the A1C test depends on the type of diabetes you have, your treatment plan and how well you're managing your blood sugar. For example, the A1C test may be recommended: Once every year if you have prediabetes, which indicates a high risk of developing diabetes Twice a year if Continue reading >>

Diabetes For Canadians For Dummies Cheat Sheet

Diabetes For Canadians For Dummies Cheat Sheet

Diabetes For Canadians For Dummies Cheat Sheet Diabetes For Canadians For Dummies Cheat Sheet Diabetes For Canadians For Dummies Cheat Sheet Early diabetes detection is far and away the best way to limit any damage to your health. Canadians who think they might have diabetes, or are at risk of developing the disease, should closely follow the Canadian Diabetes Associations (CDA) screening guidelines. If youve already been diagnosed with diabetes, however, then youre not alone: over 2.5 million Canadians are living with the disease today. With the long-term goal of keeping your health in check, its important to become familiar with the CDAs recommended testing schedules and target test results for diabetics. To successfully manage your diabetes, you need to look after yourself through a combination of medical and lifestyle therapies. Find out the basic steps you can take here. The Canadian Diabetes Association (CDA) recommends that you be tested for type 2 diabetes every three years when you reach 40 years of age, and more frequently and/or earlier if you have one or more of the following risk factors for type 2 diabetes: You have a biological first-degree relative with type 2 diabetes. (A first-degree relative is a parent, sibling, or child.) You are a member of a high-risk population (that is; being of Aboriginal, African, Asian, Hispanic, or South Asian ancestry). You have a history of gestational diabetes. You show evidence of complications associated with diabetes. These include retinopathy (eye damage), neuropathy (nerve damage), nephropathy (kidney damage), or vascular disease affecting the heart (coronary artery disease), brain (cerebrovascular disease), or legs (peripheral arterial disease). You have risk factors for vascular disease such as abnormal lipid leve Continue reading >>

Your Guide To Diabetes

Your Guide To Diabetes

Table of Contents To promote and protect the health of Canadians through leadership, partnership, innovation and action in public health. —Public Health Agency of Canada Your Guide to Diabetes Diabetes affects roughly two and a half million Canadians. Left untreated, diabetes can lead to many serious complications, including: heart disease, kidney disease, vision loss, and lower limb amputation. The Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) estimates that 5 million Canadians over the age of 20 are currently pre-diabetic. An additional 1 million new cases of pre-diabetes are expected by 2016. Pre-diabetes is a key risk factor for type 2 diabetes, and if left untreated more than half of the people with pre-diabetes will develop type 2 diabetes within 8 to 10 years. Although diabetes can lead to serious complications and premature death, there are steps that can be taken to prevent or control the disease and lower the risk of complications. This guide is intended to help you understand diabetes, how certain types can be prevented or managed, and how to live with the condition. Did You Know? You may be pre-diabetic and not know it. Pre-diabetes occurs when blood sugar levels are high, but not high enough to diagnose diabetes. Talk to your health care provider to learn more. What is diabetes? Diabetes is a chronic disease that results from the body's inability to sufficiently produce and/or properly use insulin, a hormone that regulates the way glucose (sugar) is stored and used in the body. The body needs insulin to use sugar as an energy source. There are several forms of diabetes: type 1, type 2 and gestational diabetes. What is pre-diabetes? Pre-diabetes occurs when blood glucose (sugar) levels are higher than normal, but not high enough for a diagnosis of diabetes. Glucos Continue reading >>

Glucose Testing: The Abcs Of A1cs

Glucose Testing: The Abcs Of A1cs

Learn about A1Cs and how blood glucose testing can help keep you within range – so you can feel at your best. Your healthcare professional has probably used a 3-letter word with you: A1C. This small term represents a large part of how well you are managing your diabetes. Below is a blood glucose testing guide to help you get a better sense of what your results mean. What your A1C test tells you The A1C (hemoglobin A1C) is a blood test done in a lab that shows your average blood glucose level over the past two to three months. After you eat, the glucose that isn’t used up attaches to a protein called hemoglobin in your red blood cells. The A1C test measures how much glucose is stuck to your red blood cells. Red blood cells live in our bodies for about three months – that’s why the A1C is able to show you how much glucose, on average, has been in your blood for that long. Think of glucose testing with your meter as an immediate snapshot of your blood glucose – and the A1C as the bigger picture. Together, they give you a complete picture. That’s why it’s important to have your A1C tested every three months. The Canadian Diabetes Association recommends an A1C less than seven per cent.1 Talk to your healthcare professional about what “target range” you should strive to be in. What your A1C test can’t tell you One thing the A1C can’t reveal is if your blood glucose is within range at a given time. Only “smart” blood glucose testing with your meter can. This includes: Testing around events that can affect your blood glucose the most: meals, exercise, medication and stress levels. As a next step, watching your glucose to see if it is too high or low at certain times, and taking action to keep it where it should be (e.g., try to understand if it changes Continue reading >>

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