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How Do Doctors Test For Diabetes


What Are The Different Types Of Diabetes

Early Diabetes Screening Test

The types of diabetes are:

  • Type 1 diabetes: This type is an autoimmune disease, meaning your body attacks itself. In this case, the insulin-producing cells in your pancreas are destroyed. Up to 10% of people who have diabetes have Type 1. Its usually diagnosed in children and young adults . It was once better known as juvenile diabetes. People with Type 1 diabetes need to take insulin every day. This is why it is also called insulin-dependent diabetes.
  • Type 2 diabetes: With this type, your body either doesnt make enough insulin or your bodys cells dont respond normally to the insulin. This is the most common type of diabetes. Up to 95% of people with diabetes have Type 2. It usually occurs in middle-aged and older people. Other common names for Type 2 include adult-onset diabetes and insulin-resistant diabetes. Your parents or grandparents may have called it having a touch of sugar.
  • Prediabetes: This type is the stage before Type 2 diabetes. Your blood glucose levels are higher than normal but not high enough to be officially diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes.
  • Gestational diabetes: This type develops in some women during their pregnancy. Gestational diabetes usually goes away after pregnancy. However, if you have gestational diabetes you’re at higher risk of developing Type 2 diabetes later on in life.

Less common types of diabetes include:

Diabetes insipidus is a distinct rare condition that causes your kidneys to produce a large amount of urine.

What Should My Blood Glucose Level Be

Ask your healthcare team what your blood glucose level should be. They may have a specific target range for you. In general, though, most people try to keep their blood glucose levels at these targets:


  • Before a meal: between 80 and 130 mg/dL.
  • About two hours after the start of a meal: less than 180 mg/dL.

Using A1c To Prevent Complications

People with diabetes need to manage their blood sugar levels to prevent these becoming too high.

Managing glucose levels can reduce the risk of complications affecting the small blood vessels, especially of the eyes and kidneys, and the coronary arteries.

This can help to prevent the many problems that can occur with diabetes, including:

  • vision loss

the A1C test at the beginning of a pregnancy, to see if someone with risk factors for diabetes has a high score.

Later in the pregnancy, they may test for gestational diabetes in other ways as pregnancy can affect the A1C test result.


If a person has gestational diabetes, the doctor may also test up to 12 weeks after delivery, as gestational diabetes can sometimes develop into type 2 diabetes afterward.

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What Does It Mean If Test Results Show I Have Protein In My Urine

This means your kidneys are allowing protein to be filtered through and now appear in your urine. This condition is called proteinuria. The continued presence of protein in your urine is a sign of kidney damage.

A note from Cleveland Clinic

Theres much you can do to prevent the development of diabetes . However, if you or your child or adolescent develop symptoms of diabetes, see your healthcare provider. The earlier diabetes is diagnosed, the sooner steps can be taken to treat and control it. The better you are able to control your blood sugar level, the more likely you are to live a long, healthy life.


Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 03/28/2021.

References

Alternative Medicine For Diabetes

Type 2 Diabetes Stock Photos, Pictures &  Royalty

Vitamins and minerals

Alternative medicine should never be used alone to treat diabetes. But there are things you can do — in addition to medication, proper diet, and exercise — that may help control your blood sugar and prevent complications of diabetes.

Although chromium does have an effect on insulin as well as on glucose metabolism, there is no evidence that taking chromium supplements can help in the treatment of diabetes. But chromium is found in many healthy foods, such as green vegetables, nuts, and grains. Studies have suggested that biotin, also called vitamin H, when used with chromium, may improve glucose metabolism in people with diabetes. But no studies have shown that biotin by itself is helpful.

Vitamins B6 and B12 may help treat diabetic nerve pain if you have low levels of these vitamins and that is contributing to the nerve pain. But otherwise, there is no proof that taking these vitamins will help.


Vitamin C may make up for low blood levels of insulin, which normally works to help cells absorb the vitamin. Proper amounts of vitamin C may help the body maintain a good cholesterol level and keep blood sugar levels under control. But too much can cause kidney stones and other problems. Check with your doctor to see if a vitamin C supplement is right for you.

Magnesium helps control blood sugar levels. Some people with diabetes have a serious magnesium deficiency. Magnesium supplements, in this case, may improve the action of insulin.

Mind/body medicine

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How Does A Doctor Diagnose Diabetes

There are four main blood tests for diagnosing diabetes. For all of these tests, if someone has a positive test with symptoms, diagnosis of type 2 diabetes is made. However, for those without symptoms, your doctor may need to do a second test from the list to confirm the diagnosis.


Fasting plasma glucose test: This blood test measures your blood glucose levels at the time of the test. Its taken after fasting for 8 hours and often done as part of your yearly physical.

  • What the test results mean: Normal levels are 99 mg/dL and below, prediabetes is 100 to 125 mg/dL, diabetes is 126 mg/dL and above.

Glycated hemoglobin Test: The A1C test provides an average glucose level based on the past two to three months. Because it doesnt require fasting, it is a more popular test.

A1C measures the amount of glucose that attaches to hemoglobin, the part of the red blood cell that carries oxygen.It is the main test people who are diagnosed with diabetes use. It allows them to track glucose levels as a way of managing lifestyle and treatment decisions.

The AIC test is not always accurate for certain ethnic groups. If youre of African, Mediterranean, or Southeast Asian descent, results may skew higher or lower. Your doctor may need to order a different type of A1C test.

  • What the test results mean: As blood glucose levels rise, the percentage rises. A normal A1C level is below 5.7%. Prediabetes is between 5.7% and 6.4%. Diabetes is 6.5% or higher.

How To Reverse Prediabetes

The CDC-led National Diabetes Prevention Program helps people with prediabetes make lasting lifestyle changes to prevent or delay type 2 diabetes.


Working with a trained coach, youâll learn to eat healthy, add physical activity into your life, and manage stress. With other participants, youâll celebrate successes and work to overcome challenges.

If you have prediabetes, now is your time to take action.

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Tests To Identify Type Of Diabetes

Tests that can be used to establish the etiology of diabetes include those reflective of beta cell function and markers of immune-mediated beta cell destruction . Table 3 presents the characteristics of these tests.2027

Characteristics of Special Tests for the Diagnosis of Diabetes Mellitus

C peptide


Test
Medicare reimbursement*

< 1.51 ng per mL : PPV of 96 percent for diagnosis in adults and children20

> 1.51 ng per mL: NPV of 96 percent for diagnosis in adults and children20

Not available

60 percent prevalence in adults and children21

7 to 34 percent prevalence in adults and children23,24


Presence: PPV of 92 percent for requiring insulin at three years in persons 15 to 34 years of age26

73 percent prevalence in children22

NPV of 94 percent for requiring insulin at six years in adults25

Absence: NPV of 49 percent for requiring insulin at three years in persons 15 to 34 years of age26

IA-2 and IA-2


40 percent prevalence in adults and children21

2.2 percent prevalence in adults25

PPV of 75 percent for requiring insulin at three years in persons 15 to 34 years of age26

Cost not available

86 percent prevalence in children27


75 to 85 percent prevalence in adults and children21

4 to 21 percent prevalence in adults24

PPV of 86 percent for requiring insulin at three years in persons 15 to 34 years of age26

84 percent prevalence in children22

*Based on 2009 rates.


Information from references20 through 27.

C peptide

*Based on 2009 rates.

Types Of Blood Sugar Tests

Type 1 Diabetes Tests – Dr Karthik Explains | MedX

You can take a blood sugar test two ways. People who are monitoring or managing their diabetes prick their finger using a glucometer for daily testing. The other method is drawing blood.

Blood samples are generally used to screen for diabetes. Your doctor will order a fasting blood sugar test. This test measures your blood sugar levels, or a glycosylated hemoglobin, also called a hemoglobin A1C test. The results of this test reflect your blood sugar levels over the previous 90 days. The results will show if you have prediabetes or diabetes and can monitor how your diabetes is controlled.


When and how often you should test your blood sugar depends on the type of diabetes you have and your treatment.

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What Are The Complications Of Diabetes

If your blood glucose level remains high over a long period of time, your bodys tissues and organs can be seriously damaged. Some complications can be life-threatening over time.

Complications include:

  • Dental problems.

Complications of gestational diabetes:

In the mother:Preeclampsia , risk of gestational diabetes during future pregnancies and risk of diabetes later in life.

In the newborn: Higher-than-normal birth weight, low blood sugar , higher risk of developing Type 2 diabetes over time and death shortly after birth.

Can You Test For Diabetes At Home

People living with diabetes test their blood glucose levels at home all the time, so cant you do the same?

While the blood glucose testing equipment you can buy over the counter is useful for monitoring diabetes, it is not an effective diagnostic tool. For starters, your ideal blood sugar readings will be different depending on the time of day, your age, or other health conditions. It is in your best interest to get tested by a healthcare professional who can give you an appropriate target range and accurately interpret the results.

So while there is no harm in testing yourself at home, you should take any abnormal results to your doctor for further testing.

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Sleep And Blood Sugar Testing

Testing your blood sugar before you go to sleep and after you awaken will reveal if it is high or lowand what might be causing that. Normally, the body releases insulin in the early morning to keep glucose levels, which naturally rise in the a.m., in check. If you have diabetes and your blood sugar is high when you awaken, you may need medication adjustments, says Wolf. On the other hand, if you check your blood sugar before you go to sleep and its on the lower end, you may want to eat a snack, adds Wolf. This applies for anyone taking insulin to control their blood sugar. Your physician will likely adjust your medication if your blood sugar is consistently low before bedtime.

How Often Do I Need To See My Primary Diabetes Healthcare Professional

Doctor Making Blood Sugar Test Clinic Diabetes Drop Blood Finger ...

In general, if you are being treated with insulin shots, you should see your doctor at least every three to four months. If you are treated with pills or are managing diabetes through diet, you should be seen at least every four to six months. More frequent visits may be needed if your blood sugar is not controlled or if complications of diabetes are worsening.

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Does Eating Sugary Foods Cause Diabetes

Sugar itself doesn’t directly cause diabetes. Eating foods high in sugar content can lead to weight gain, which is a risk factor for developing diabetes. Eating more sugar than recommended American Heart Association recommends no more than six teaspoons a day for women and nine teaspoons for men leads to all kinds of health harms in addition to weight gain.

These health harms are all risk factors for the development of diabetes or can worsen complications. Weight gain can:

  • Raise blood pressure, cholesterol and triglyceride levels.
  • Increase your risk of cardiovascular disease.
  • Cause fat buildup in your liver.
  • Cause tooth decay.

How Are Diabetes And Prediabetes Diagnosed

The following tests are used for the diagnosis of diabetes:

  • A fasting plasma glucose test measures your blood glucose after you have gone at least 8 hours without eating. This test is used to detect diabetes or prediabetes.
  • An oral glucose tolerance test measures your blood sugar after you have gone at least eight hours without eating and two hours after you drink a glucose-containing beverage. This test can be used to diagnose diabetes or prediabetes.
  • In a random plasma glucose test, your doctor checks your blood sugar without regard to when you ate your last meal. This test, along with an assessment of symptoms, is used to diagnose diabetes, but not prediabetes.
  • A hemoglobin A1c test can be done without fasting, and can be used to diagnose or confirm either prediabetes or diabetes.

Positive test results should be confirmed by repeating the fasting plasma glucose test or the oral glucose tolerance test on a different day. When first diagnosed with diabetes, your doctor may 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 and not another type. The goal of having the ZnT8Ab test is a prompt and accurate diagnosis and that can lead to timely treatment.

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What Are The Symptoms Of Diabetes

Symptoms of diabetes include:

Type 1 diabetes symptoms: Symptoms can develop quickly over a few weeks or months. Symptoms begin when youre young as a child, teen or young adult. Additional symptoms include nausea, vomiting or stomach pains and yeast infections or urinary tract infections.

Type 2 diabetes and prediabetes symptoms: You may not have any symptoms at all or may not notice them since they develop slowly over several years. Symptoms usually begin to develop when youre an adult, but prediabetes and Type 2 diabetes is on the rise in all age groups.

Gestational diabetes: You typically will not notice symptoms. Your obstetrician will test you for gestational diabetes between 24 and 28 weeks of your pregnancy.

The Only Way You Can Find Out If You Or A Loved One Has Diabetes Is From Blood Tests That Measure You Blood Glucose Levels These Can Be Arranged Through Your Gp

Diabetes Diagnosis

A diagnosis of diabetes is always confirmed by laboratory results. Youll usually get the results of your blood test back in a few days. If you have symptoms that came on quickly and youve been taken into hospital, the results should come back in an hour or two.

A finger prick test using a home testing kit may show you have high blood sugar levels but won’t confirm you have diabetes.

A normal blood test result will show you don’t have diabetes. But the result will also show if you have diabetes or are at risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

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What Does A Blood Sugar Test Do

Your doctor may order a blood sugar test to see if you have diabetes or prediabetes. The test will measure the amount of glucose in your blood.

Your body takes carbohydrates found in foods like grains and fruits and converts them into glucose. Glucose, a sugar, is one of the bodys main sources of energy.

For people with diabetes, a home test helps monitor blood sugar levels. Taking a blood sugar test can help determine your blood sugar level to see if you need to adjust your diet, exercise, or diabetes medications.

Low blood sugar can lead to seizures or a coma if left untreated. High blood sugar can lead to ketoacidosis, a life-threatening condition thats often a concern for those with type 1 diabetes.

Ketoacidosis occurs when your body starts using only fat for fuel. Hyperglycemia over a long period can increase your risk for neuropathy , along with heart, kidney, and eye diseases.

How Is Diabetes Managed

Diabetes affects your whole body. To best manage diabetes, youll need to take steps to keep your risk factors under control and within the normal range, including:

  • Keep your blood glucose levels as near to normal as possible by following a diet plan, taking prescribed medication and increasing your activity level.
  • Maintain your blood cholesterol and triglyceride levels as near the normal ranges as possible.
  • Control your blood pressure. Your blood pressure should not be over 140/90 mmHg.

You hold the keys to managing your diabetes by:

  • Planning what you eat and following a healthy meal plan. Follow a Mediterranean diet or Dash diet. These diets are high in nutrition and fiber and low in fats and calories. See a registered dietitian for help understanding nutrition and meal planning.
  • Exercising regularly. Try to exercise at least 30 minutes most days of the week. Walk, swim or find some activity you enjoy.
  • Losing weight if you are overweight. Work with your healthcare team to develop a weight-loss plan.
  • Taking medication and insulin, if prescribed, and closely following recommendations on how and when to take it.
  • Quitting smoking .

You have a lot of control on a day-to-day basis in managing your diabetes!

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