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How does the A1c test identify glucose levels?

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The sugar in your blood is called glucose. When glucose builds up in your blood, it binds to the hemoglobin in your red blood cells. The A1c test measures how much glucose is bound.

Red blood cells live for about three months, so the test shows the average level of glucose in your blood for the past three months.

If your glucose levels have been high over recent weeks, your hemoglobin A1c test will be higher.

American Diabetes Association: “A1C Test,” “A1C and eAG.”  

Droumaguet, C. , 2006.  Diabetes Care

Steffes, M. 2005.  Clinical Chamistry,

Selvin, E. , 2006. Diabetes Care

Mayo.org: “A1c test.”

National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases: “The A1C Test and Diabetes.”

Reviewed by Michael Dansinger on November 1, 2018

American Diabetes Association: “A1C Test,” “A1C and eAG.”  

Droumaguet, C. , 2006.  Diabetes Care

Steffes, M. 2005.  Clinical Chamistry,

Selvin, E. , 2006. Diabetes Care

Mayo.org: “A1c test.”

National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases: “The A1C Test and Diabetes.”

Reviewed by Michael Dansinger on November 1, 2018

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What is a normal hemoglobin A1c test?

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