Being sent for test..what to expect

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Regular Member

Date Joined Jan 2009
Total Posts : 153
   Posted 5/20/2009 8:43 PM (GMT -6)   
I am being sent tomorrow for the a1c test after several weeks of self monitoring at home.  My self monitoring at home have results all over the board.  It seems like my morning readings are all good (anywhere from 79 to 92).  After that things seem to get weird.  I seem to get afternoon and evening readings anywhere from the 130's to the high 180's with a couple of times at 202. 
With these types of home monitoring readings is it possible to have a normal a1c? 
This is all so confusing!
Diagnosed Friday, February 13, 2009
Colazal 3 tabs 3X daily
Prednisone 40 mg since 3/4/09
Zantac 1 tab 2X daily

Forum Moderator

Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 5312
   Posted 5/20/2009 9:21 PM (GMT -6)   
The A1c is a simple blood test taken any time of the day (you don't have to be fasting) and the results give what your average blood sugar has been for about the last 3 months.  So, it's hard to say how it will turn out because of your erratic blood sugar readings.  Since the prednisone messes up the blood sugar (causing high readings), you may expect an A1c higher than what it would really be if you weren't on that medication.  Today, most doctors say they want the A1c to be lower than 6.0 which is equivalent to about an average of 120.  Home monitoring blood glucose meters have an accuracy rate of plus or minus some  percent like maybe 10% (not sure about that - someone needs to correct this, please).  Even so, they still give us pretty good approximations of our blood sugar and trends.  I'm sure your doctor realizes how the prednisone affects blood sugar (all you have to do is read the product insert and google for info).  By following a lower carb diet and doing regular exercise, though, you can counteract some of that effect.  Good luck with the test.

forum moderator - diabetes
diabetes controlled so far by low/no carb diet and exercise; no meds

Veteran Member

Date Joined May 2006
Total Posts : 547
   Posted 5/21/2009 2:21 PM (GMT -6)   
One thing to remember with home glucose testing..... it's just a snapshot of that moment in time. The body naturally varies in BGLs but, with normal people, that variance always stays within a range of 4-7(70-126), regardless of food eaten. Falling outside this range is usually an indication that the body is struggling to metabolize carbs (aka Diabetes). It's a great tool for managing diabetes if used in conjunction with making appropriate diet/exercise choices. It's used on a daily basis to manage the situation in the present tense.

An A1C, on the other hand, gives you and average or a 90-day overview of what your BGLs were like. Average also means that sometimes your BGLs were above that number and sometimes below. You can't test every second (unless you're on a CGMS) so, it's hard to guess what your last 90 average (A1C) is by home testing results.

An A1C, along with daily logging information, can be used to pinpoint more specific areas of improvement when it comes to diet and exercise choices as well as whether medication may need to be considered. Good luck with the test :-)
- Phishbowl (Type 1 since Jan'05 - Levemir, NovoRapid)
"What's Not Measured Is Not Managed"

"It is impossible for a man to learn what he thinks he already knows"-Epictetus

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