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Are you at risk for diabetes?

Schedule your screening today.

You can manage diabetes better if you catch it early. Diabetes can affect anyone and can lead to eye damage, kidney disease and other conditions that cause daily pain and damage to your body. You are at risk for diabetes if you are overweight, have high blood pressure or have a family history of the disease. If you have more than one risk factor, the likelihood you’ll develop diabetes increases. Preventive screening and diagnostic testing can help you prevent complications caused by diabetes.

Talk to your doctor to learn more or to make an appointment for diabetes screening (hemoglobin A1C test).

Hemoglobin A1C (HbA1c) Test

By analyzing samples of your blood, we can prevent and diagnose diabetes early. Most testing for diabetes is done as part of a routine physical, not at a separate appointment. If you’re worried you may be at risk for developing diabetes, mention your concerns to your doctor at your next physical.

What is the A1C test?

Your red blood cells contain a protein called hemoglobin, which attracts sugar. To understand your blood sugar levels, we sample some of your blood to determine how much sugar covers your hemoglobin. We refer to this pairing as “A1C.” The more sugar you have on your hemoglobin, the more likely you are to develop Type 2 diabetes.

The A1C blood test shows your blood sugar activity over the three months before your screening. This allow us to diagnose developing diabetes or monitor existing conditions.

When should I get the A1C test?

You should get an A1C test if you are:

  • Aged 45 years or older
  • Have high blood pressure
  • Inactive or frequently stationary
  • Overweight
  • Pregnant

Most people at risk for diabetes should get an A1C test twice a year. However, your doctor may recommend more testing if you need closer monitoring.

How does the A1C test work?

A1C tests are quick and take place in a doctor’s office or a medical laboratory. There’s no prep work needed.

A nurse or blood work technician will insert a tiny needle into your vein and extract a small blood sample for your care team to analyze. We then rate your blood sugar levels (the amount of glucose attached to your hemoglobin) using the following measurements:

  • Normal: below 5.7%
  • Prediabetes: 5.7% to 6.4%
  • Diabetes: 6.5% or above

Anything else I should know about A1C testing?

If your A1C levels indicate that you have prediabetes, your physician will discuss how you manage your condition and work to prevent Type 2 diabetes. Your physician will probably ask you to test again, every one to two years.

If your A1C levels indicate that you have diabetes, your physician may develop a personal care plan to help you manage your condition, as well as a routine testing schedule.

Keep in mind, kidney failure, certain medications (like opioids and HIV medications) or pregnancy can affect your A1C reading. So be sure to talk to your doctor about any current conditions or medications.

Lower your chance of developing diabetes.

We’re here to help.

Oftentimes you can prevent diabetes by balancing a healthy lifestyle, even if you’re at risk or have prediabetes. The Beaumont Health Diabetes Prevention Program is a year-long initiative full of resources that aim to lower your chance of developing diabetes. Through this program, you will have access to experts in diabetes care who can help guide you through effective principles and techniques to keep you healthy.

Learn more about our Diabetes Prevention Program »