Update on Diabetes Diagnosis: A Historical Review of the Dilemma of the Diagnostic Utility of Glycohemoglobin A1c and a Proposal for a Combined Glucose-A1c Diagnostic Method
From the Department of Medicine, Michigan State University, College of Human Medicine East Lansing, Michigan, USA
Aldasouqi SA, Gossain VV. Update on Diabetes Diagnosis: A Historical Review of the Dilemma of the Diagnostic Utility of Glycohemoglobin A1c and a Proposal for a Combined Glucose-A1c Diagnostic Method. Ann Saudi Med 2012;32(3):229-235.
The role of glycohemoglobin A1c (A1c) for the diagnosis of diabetes has been debated for over three decades. Recently, the American Diabetes Association (ADA) has recommended adding A1c as an additional criterion for diabetes diagnosis. In view of the continued debate about the diagnostic utility of A1c, and in view of the unabated burden of undiagnosed diabetes, the search for alternative diagnostic methods is discussed. A historical literature review is provided, in view of the new ADA diagnostic guidelines, and a proposal is provided for combining A1c and a glucose measurement as a diagnostic alternative/adjunct to the use of a single criterion. This proposal is based on the non-overlapping of the advantages and disadvantages of these individual tests. The cost-effectiveness of this method remains to be tested.