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November 29, 2005


Question from India:

What yearly laboratory tests should a diabetic patient have? When should they be done? I am a 45 year old man who weighs 100 kg (220 pounds).


In association with your physician, you should have a yearly eye exam to screen for eye disease from diabetes. You should have a yearly test of kidney function with a urine that tests for albumin in the urine. You should have your blood pressure checked every visit. You should see the physician every three months if you have type 1 diabetes. You should see the physician every three to six months if you have type 2 diabetes. At those visits, you should have your feet checked for sores, ability to sense light touch, blood pressure, weight, and review your home blood sugar readings. A hemoglobin A1c test to measure your overall level of glucose control should be performed at each visit. Your fasting lipids should be checked yearly. If you have type 1 diabetes, you should have your thyroid checked every year, as thyroid disease is more common in those with type 1 diabetes.