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How Is Diabetes Diagnosed?

Clip Number: 6 of 14
Presentation: Diabetes
The following reviewers and/or references were utilized in the creation of this video:
Reviewed By: Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
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To find out if you have diabetes, your healthcare provider can ask if you've noticed any signs or symptoms of diabetes, like being thirsty or tired, going to the bathroom a lot, having tingling in your feet, or experiencing blurry vision. These are clues that you might have diabetes.
Your healthcare provider can also do tests to see how much sugar is in your blood. If there's too much sugar, you probably have diabetes.
One of these tests is just a simple finger prick. This test uses a small drop of blood to see if your sugar levels are too high.
Another test, called a "fasting glucose test," is done after you haven't had anything to eat for 10 hours. Blood is then taken from your arm and sent to the lab to be analyzed.
Usually, when you haven't eaten for a while, your body should keep your sugar levels at about 60 to 110. But, if you have diabetes, the sugar levels will be higher than normal. If the fasting sugar levels are more than 126, your doctor will do the test again on another day and to see if the levels are high again.
The other blood test is called the "glucose tolerance test." Like the fasting glucose test, you aren't allowed to eat anything for 10 hours before having it. At the doctor's office, your healthcare provider will take some of your blood. Then, you'll drink a very sweet liquid. Your healthcare provider will take three or four more blood samples in the next few hours. For people without diabetes, their blood sugar level will go up and then go down. For people who DO have diabetes, their sugar level will go up and stay up.
If any of these tests reveal high blood sugar levels, your doctor may perform additional blood and urine tests to make sure that you truly have diabetes. Also, if you have had a blood sugar level greater than 200 at ANY time, you probably have diabetes.
 

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