Compare - HbA1c Test (EW)

The following is a list of what is included in the item above. Click the test(s) below to view what biomarkers are measured along with an explanation of what the biomarker is measuring.

Also known as: A1c, Glycated Hemoglobin, Glycohemoglobin, Glycosylated Hemoglobin, HA1c, HbA1c, Hemoglobin A1c, Hemoglobin A1c HgbA1C, Hgb A1c

Hemoglobin A1c

The A1c test evaluates the average amount of glucose in the blood over the last 2 to 3 months. It does this by measuring the concentration of glycated (also often called glycosylated) hemoglobin A1c. Hemoglobin is an oxygen-transporting protein found inside red blood cells (RBCs). There are several types of normal hemoglobin, but the predominant form – about 95-98% – is hemoglobin A. As glucose circulates in the blood, some of it spontaneously binds to hemoglobin A. The hemoglobin molecules with attached glucose are called glycated hemoglobin. The higher the concentration of glucose in the blood, the more glycated hemoglobin is formed. Once the glucose binds to the hemoglobin, it remains there for the life of the red blood cell – normally about 120 days. The predominant form of glycated hemoglobin is referred to as HbA1c or A1c. A1c is produced on a daily basis and slowly cleared from the blood as older RBCs die and younger RBCs (with non-glycated hemoglobin) take their place. This test is used to monitor treatment in someone who has been diagnosed with diabetes. It helps to evaluate how well their glucose levels have been controlled by treatment over time. This test may be used to screen for and diagnose diabetes or risk of developing diabetes. In 2010, clinical practice guidelines from the American Diabetes Association (ADA) stated that A1c may be added to fasting plasma glucose (FPG) and oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT) as an option for diabetes screening and diagnosis. For monitoring purposes, an A1c of less than 7% indicates good glucose control and a lower risk of diabetic complications for the majority of diabetics. However, in 2012, the ADA and the European Association for the Study of Diabetes (EASD) issued a position statement recommending that the management of glucose control in type 2 diabetes be more "patient-centered." Data from recent studies have shown that low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) can cause complications and that people with risk of severe hypoglycemia, underlying health conditions, complications, and a limited life expectancy do not necessarily benefit from having a stringent goal of less than 7% for their A1c. The statement recommends that people work closely with their doctor to select a goal that reflects each person's individual health status and that balances risks and benefits.
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The Compare - HbA1c Test (EW) test contains 1 test with 1 biomarker.

Why pay $49 for Everlywell's HbA1c finger prick test kit when you can experience the convenience and affordablity of a HbA1c lab test with Ulta Lab Tests - compare now and save!

Brief Description: The HbA1c (Hemoglobin A1c) Lab Test is a vital diagnostic tool used to measure the average blood glucose levels over a span of two to three months. It focuses on a single marker, Hemoglobin A1c, and provides valuable insights into a patient's long-term blood sugar control.

Also Known As: A1c Test, HbA1c Test, Glycohemoglobin Test, Glycated Hemoglobin Test, Glycosylated Hemoglobin Test, HbA1c Test

Collection Method: Blood Draw

Specimen Type: Whole Blood

Test Preparation: No preparation required

When and Why the HbA1c Lab Test May Be Ordered

Timing of the Test: The HbA1c Lab Test is typically ordered as part of routine monitoring for individuals with diabetes or those at risk of developing diabetes. It may also be used for diagnostic purposes.

Reasons for Ordering the Test:

  1. Diabetes Diagnosis: Healthcare providers often order the HbA1c test to diagnose diabetes or prediabetes. An elevated HbA1c level can indicate impaired glucose metabolism.

  2. Diabetes Management: For individuals with diabetes, this test is crucial for ongoing management. It helps assess the effectiveness of treatment regimens, including medications, lifestyle modifications, and insulin therapy.

  3. Monitoring Blood Sugar Control: The HbA1c test is used to monitor long-term blood sugar control. It reflects the average blood glucose levels over the past two to three months, providing a more comprehensive picture than daily glucose measurements.

  4. Risk Assessment: For individuals at risk of developing diabetes, such as those with a family history or specific risk factors, regular HbA1c testing can help identify early signs of glucose intolerance.

What the HbA1c Lab Test Checks For

The HbA1c Lab Test measures the percentage of Hemoglobin A1c in the blood. Hemoglobin A1c is a type of hemoglobin that forms when glucose binds to hemoglobin molecules in red blood cells. The test quantifies the percentage of A1c relative to the total hemoglobin in the blood.

How Health Care Providers Use the Results of the HbA1c Lab Test

Healthcare providers use the results of the HbA1c Lab Test to:

  1. Diagnose Diabetes: An HbA1c level of 6.5% or higher is indicative of diabetes, while levels between 5.7% and 6.4% may suggest prediabetes.

  2. Monitor Blood Sugar Control: For individuals with diabetes, the test results guide treatment adjustments. Healthcare providers aim to keep HbA1c levels within target ranges to minimize the risk of complications.

  3. Assess Treatment Effectiveness: Changes in HbA1c levels over time help healthcare providers evaluate the effectiveness of diabetes management strategies, including medication adjustments and lifestyle modifications.

  4. Risk Stratification: In individuals at risk of diabetes, regular HbA1c testing can identify those who may benefit from early interventions to prevent or delay the onset of the disease.

  5. Overall Health Assessment: Elevated HbA1c levels can be associated with an increased risk of diabetes-related complications, such as cardiovascular disease, kidney problems, and nerve damage. Healthcare providers use the results to assess overall health and the need for additional preventive measures.

In summary, the HbA1c Lab Test is a fundamental tool in diabetes management and risk assessment. It aids in diagnosing diabetes, monitoring blood sugar control, assessing treatment effectiveness, and identifying individuals at risk of developing the disease. By providing insights into long-term glucose management, the HbA1c test plays a crucial role in promoting the health and well-being of individuals with diabetes and those at risk.

We advise having your results reviewed by a licensed medical healthcare professional for proper interpretation of your results.

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