In July, 2009, an expert committee composed partially of representatives from the American Diabetes Association proposed that hemoglobin A1c be used as a diagnostic test for diabetes in non-pregnant adults and children.
The expert committee proposed that diabetes is present when hemoglobin A1c is 6.5% or greater. The test should be repeated for confirmation unless the individual has clear symptoms of diabetes.
The committee also recommended that the term “prediabetes” be phased out. They indicated that a person with hemoglobin A1c of at least 6% but less that 6.5% is at risk (high risk?) of developing diabetes, yet they don’t want to give that condition a name (such as prediabetes).
In December, 2009, the American Diabetes Association established a hemoglobin A1c criterion for the diagnosis of diabetes: 6.5% or higher. Diagnosis of prediabetes involves hemoglobin A1c between 5.7 and 6.4%. These numbers don’t apply to pregnant women.
Previously established blood sugar criteria can also be used to diagnose diabetes and prediabetes.
This step is a major change in the diagnosis of diabetes.
Reference: International Expert Committee. International Expert Committee report on the role of the A1c assay in the diagnosis of diabetes. Diabetes Care, 32 (2009): 1-8.