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Criteria for Pre-Diabetes Updated

The Expert Committee on the Diagnosis and Classification of Diabetes has lowered the fasting blood sugar level to diagnose Pre-Diabetes.  Pre-Diabetes is a condition in which blood sugar is higher than normal but not high enough to diagnose diabetes.  Pre-Diabetes increases risk for type 2 diabetes in the future.

Here is what has changed:

Updated Diagnosis Criteria

  • A fasting blood sugar of 100 - 125 mg/dl now indicates Pre-Diabetes. 
  • A normal fasting blood sugar is now less than 100 mg/dl.

Previous Diagnosis Criteria

  • A fasting blood sugar of 110-125 mg/dl indicated Pre-Diabetes.
  • A normal fasting blood sugar was less than 110 mg/dl.

A fasting blood sugar of 126 mg/dl or more still indicates diabetes.  In addition to increased risk for diabetes, those with Pre-Diabetes are also at increased risk for heart disease.  Pre-Diabetes is also associated a condition known as metabolic syndrome.  Metabolic syndrome is characterized by high blood pressure, dyslipidemia (disordered blood fats including decreased HDL (good) cholesterol levels and/or elevated triglycerides), elevated fasting blood sugar, and centralized obesity (or abdominal obesity, apple body shape).

The good news...

A reduction of body weight, following a healthy meal plan, exercise, and some medications can help to delay or prevent the development of diabetes. Talk with your doctor about your diabetes and heart disease risks.

The American Diabetes Association.  Diagnosis and Classification of Diabetes Mellitus.  Diabetes Care, 27: S5-S10.

The American Diabetes Association.  Follow-up Report on the Diagnosis of Diabetes Mellitus.  Diabetes Care, 26:3160-3167.

NIH Publication No. 04-4893.


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