Was dx'd as pre-diabetic with A1C of 6.5 through my primary. According to the new standards, 6.5 is the defining level for diabetes, isn't it? I've radically changed my diet & am exercising consistently. I have no symptoms. Should I be testing? Should I be on meds?

Patty Bonsignore


You are right that an A1C test result of 6.5% or higher is diagnostic for diabetes, but this test must be confirmed by one other test, such as another A1C, a fasting blood glucose or a 2-hour oral glucose tolerance test. Ask your doctor if a fasting blood glucose test was done and what the results were. A fasting blood glucose between 100-125 indicates pre-diabetes, and a result of 126 or higher indicates diabetes. Sometimes one blood test will indicate pre-diabetes and the second test will indicate diabetes. When this happens, the person is truly on the line between diabetes and pre-diabetes. If your A1C was 6.5 % and your fasting result was 126 or over, then you do have diabetes. Whether you have pre-diabetes or early diabetes, the treatment is pretty much the same; eat a lower carb, lower fat diet, get 150 minutes of aerobic exercise each week (30 minutes, 5 times per week) and try to lose 7% of your body weight if you are overweight. It’s a good idea to know how to check your blood glucose level, but probably not necessary to check it every day. Checking a few times a week, before or two hours after a meal, will give you important information about how well your diabetes is managed. The first drug of choice for diabetes or pre- diabetes is metformin. Talk to your doctor about metformin and whether he or she thinks it is a good idea for you.

October 5, 2012 at 10:06 pm