What is Prediabetes?

January 2016

We’re hearing more and more about prediabetes in the news these days. What exactly is it?

Before people develop type 2 diabetes, they almost always have “prediabetes” – blood-glucose levels that are higher than normal but not yet high enough to be diagnosed as diabetes. Doctors sometimes refer to prediabetes as impaired glucose tolerance (IGT) or impaired fasting glucose (IFG), depending on what test was used when it was detected. This condition puts you at a higher risk for developing type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

There are no clear symptoms of prediabetes, so you may have it and not know it. Some people with prediabetes may have some of the symptoms of diabetes or even problems from diabetes already. You usually find out that you have prediabetes when being tested for diabetes. If you have prediabetes, you should be checked for type 2 diabetes every one to two years. The good news is that, with healthy lifestyle changes, you may be able to prevent the onset of diabetes.

Results indicating prediabetes are:

  • An A1C of 5.7% to 6.4%
  • Fasting blood glucose of 100 to 125 mg/dl
  • An OGTT 2-hour blood glucose of 140 mg/dl to 199 mg/dl

Source: American Diabetes Association

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