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How does a doctor test for diabetes?

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Getting diagnosed for diabetes begins with one of three tests. in most cases, your doctor will want to repeat a test that is high in order to confirm the diagnosis.

Tests include:

Your doctor may also suggest a zinc transporter 8 autoantibody test. This blood test -- along with other information and test results -- can help determine if a person has type 1 diabetes instead of another type. The goal of having this blood test is a prompt and accurate diagnosis, one that can lead to timely treatment.

  • A fasting glucose test is a test of your blood sugar levels taken in the morning before you have eaten. A level of 126 mg/dL or higher may mean that you have diabetes.
  • An oral glucose tolerance test entails drinking a beverage containing glucose and then having your blood glucose levels checked every 30 to 60 minutes for up to three hours. If the glucose level is 200 mg/dL or higher at two hours, then you might have diabetes.
  • The A1c test is a simple blood test that shows your average blood sugar levels for the past two to three months. An A1c level of 6.5% or higher may mean you have diabetes.

SOURCES: 

News release, FDA. 

American Family Physician. 

National Diabetes Education Program. 

American Diabetes Association. 

Clinical Diabetes Journal. 

WebMD Health News: "FDA Restricts Use of Diabetes Drug Avandia." 

News release, FDA: '' Actos (pioglitazone): Ongoing Safety Review - Potential Increased Risk of Bladder Cancer."

News release, FDA.

Reviewed by Jennifer Robinson on January 12, 2018

SOURCES: 

News release, FDA. 

American Family Physician. 

National Diabetes Education Program. 

American Diabetes Association. 

Clinical Diabetes Journal. 

WebMD Health News: "FDA Restricts Use of Diabetes Drug Avandia." 

News release, FDA: '' Actos (pioglitazone): Ongoing Safety Review - Potential Increased Risk of Bladder Cancer."

News release, FDA.

Reviewed by Jennifer Robinson on January 12, 2018

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What professionals may help me with diabetes other than my doctor?

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THIS TOOL DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. It is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment and should not be relied on to make decisions about your health. Never ignore professional medical advice in seeking treatment because of something you have read on the WebMD Site. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call your doctor or dial 911.

    This tool does not provide medical advice. See additional information.

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