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Diabetes

Question
Posted by: Sarah Mottram | 2019/02/21

Q.

Diagnosis

My husband has been diagnosed as pre-diabetic and diabetic, according to which nurse he sees.  However, he has NOT been told to see his doctor and when we ask, subject is changed.  My husband has been hounded for months to do blood tests and to see the nurse. He was given a finger prick blood test kit to use, which has proved useful. His readings seem to be normal, apart from the starving one. He has been on blood pressure and cholesterol medication for 25 and 17 years, both of which are known to raise sugar levels. This is being completely dismissed by the nurses. He takes his statin last thing at night. All the nurses seem hell bent on getting him to attend a Desmond day rather than see his GP, which leads us to believe he is being over diagnosed!

Expert's Reply

A.

Diabetes expert
- 2019/02/25

Hi

According to SA guidelines, a fasting laboratory glucose (done in the morning after fasting for 8 hours) is considered normal if it is less than 6.1, pre-diabetes if it is between 6.1 and 7, and diabetes if it is 7 or more. Normally we would want two abnormal results, or one abnormal result with associated symptoms like tiredness, weight loss, drinking lots of water and passing too much urine. The other way to test glucose is to do a glucose tolerance test where you go to the lab fasting and they give one 75grams of glucose to drink in water and then test your glucose levels after 2 hours. The cut off for diabetes is a level of 11.1 or higher at 2 hours and normal is less than 7.8. Between these two levels is considered pre- diabetes. Some patients will be normal on one test and abnormal on another, so sometimes we may do  both. We don’t normally use the finger-prick test to diagnose diabetes, as the levels are a bit more variable

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