American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists Approves New Diagnosis for Diabetes

The decision was announced in a position statement entitled

| Feb 5, 2010

In addition to diagnosing type 2 diabetes based on fasting blood glucose levels or a glucose tolerance test, the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists (AACE) and the American College of Endocrinology (ACE) have now approved the use of A1c as an additional diagnostic criterion for type 2 diabetes.

The AACE decision was released in a position statement entitled "The AACE/ACE Statement on the Use of A1c for the Diagnosis of Diabetes", which can be found online here. The position statement also reviews the limitations of the test, such as certain ethnic groups having marginally elevated values, which do not necessarily indicate diabetes.

The A1c or hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) test determines the average level of blood glucose over a 3-month period.  How does that work? Red blood cells contain a protein called hemoglobin A, which is the actual carrier of oxygen in the blood. Glucose in the blood also attaches to the protein (or glycates the protein).  More glucose in the blood means more of it can to stick to the hemoglobin A protein.  Once a hemoglobin molecule is glycated, it stays that way. And since hemoglobin A can survive in the bloodstream for about 3 months, measuring the amount of glycated hemoglobin gives you an average amount of glucose in the blood over about a 3 month period. An A1c of 7.0 indicates that 7 percent of the hemoglobin A molecules are glycated.

"Using A1c will provide doctors and patients a convenient additional tool to diagnose diabetes and thereby identify more patients with it," said Dr. Jeffrey R Garber, president of AACE, in a press release.

The most common criteria currently used to diagnose diabetes are a fasting glucose of 126 or greater, or a two-hour value on a glucose tolerance test (GTT) greater than 200. Both tests require patients to fast for a minimum of eight hours prior to being tested. The GTT is a 2-hour series of measuring glucose levels (multiple blood draws) following the administration of a large amount of glucose.

The AACE Guidelines for the Management of Diabetes use an A1c of 6.5 (meaning 6.5 percent of the hemoglobin A is glycated) or less as a goal for patients once they have been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes.

About the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists (AACE) AACE is a professional medical organization with more than 6,000 members in the United States and 91 other countries. AACE members are physicians who specialize in endocrinology, diabetes, and metabolism. For more information about AACE, visit their web site at

* * *


American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists: 

Press release

Click Here To View Or Post Comments

Categories: A1c Test, Blood Glucose, Blood Sugar, Diabetes, Diabetes, Endocrinology, Health Research, Teenagers, Type 2 Issues

Take the Diabetes Health Pump Survey
See What's Inside
Read this FREE issue now
For healthcare professionals only
  • 12th Annual Product Reference Guide
  • Insulin Syringe Chart
  • Insulin Pen Needles Chart
  • Fast-Acting Glucose
  • Sharps Disposal
  • Blood Glucose Meters Chart
  • Insulin Pumps Chart
See the entire table of contents here!

You can view the current or previous issues of Diabetes Health online, in their entirety, anytime you want.
Click Here To View

See if you qualify for our free healthcare professional magazines. Click here to start your application for Pre-Diabetes Health, Diabetes Health Pharmacist and Diabetes Health Professional.

Learn More About the Professional Subscription

Free Diabetes Health e-Newsletter

Top Rated
Print | Email | Share | Comments (2)

You May Also Be Interested In...


Posted by Anonymous on 7 February 2010

Although the statement specifically "does not recommend" using A1C to diagnose Type 1 diabetes, would either A1C or a GTT differentiate between Type 1 and 2, or even something else like pancreatic cancer? It seems an initial test would simply say there is a problem, not why.

Posted by Anonymous on 11 February 2010

I saw that the ADA (American Diabetes Association) is also now recognizing A1C as diagnostic criteria for Type 2(no diabetese = 5%, pre-diabetes = 5.7 - 6.4 % and diabetes = > or equal to 6.5% but it was unclear in this article if AACE is using the same cutoffs to define diagnosis.

Add your comments about this article below. You can add comments as a registered user or anonymously. If you choose to post anonymously your comments will be sent to our moderator for approval before they appear on this page. If you choose to post as a registered user your comments will appear instantly.

When voicing your views via the comment feature, please respect the Diabetes Health community by refraining from comments that could be considered offensive to other people. Diabetes Health reserves the right to remove comments when necessary to maintain the cordial voice of the diabetes community.

For your privacy and protection, we ask that you do not include personal details such as address or telephone number in any comments posted.

Don't have your Diabetes Health Username? Register now and add your comments to all our content.

Have Your Say...

Username: Password:
©1991-2015 Diabetes Health | Home | Privacy | Press | Advertising | Help | Contact Us | Donate | Sitemap

Diabetes Health Medical Disclaimer

The information on this site is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. All content, including text, graphics, images, and information, contained on or available through this website is for general information purposes only. Opinions expressed here are the opinions of writers, contributors, and commentators, and are not necessarily those of Diabetes Health. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website.