What Is a Normal Hgb A1c?

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A blood test will determine your Hgb A1c
A blood test will determine your Hgb A1c (Image: Image by Flickr.com, courtesy of Andrew Mason)

HbA1c, or hemoglobin A1c, measures the amount of hemoglobin (a substance in your red blood cells) that has glucose (blood sugar) attached to it. The test is typically ordered for patients with diabetes.

Function

While people with diabetes can use monitors to check their blood sugar on a day-to-day basis, an HbA1c test can determine how well controlled blood sugar has been over a number of months.

Normal Range

Typically, four to six percent is considered a normal HbA1c reading.

Considerations

People with diabetes may have a slightly higher reading. Often, diabetes patients are told to aim for seven percent HbA1c or lower.

Time Frame

Often, the HbA1c test is ordered two to four times a year for people with diabetes. Your doctor may order the test more or less frequently depending on how well controlled your blood sugar is.

Alternative

Estimated average glucose (eAG), is frequently given to diabetes patients in conjunction with the HbA1c. The eAG helps to clarify HbA1c test results by translating them into an average blood sugar reading similar to the results given on blood sugar monitors.

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