The development of specific diabetes complications correlates with glycated haemoglobin (HbA1c), the most accepted measure of chronic glycaemia.
An HbA1c of 48 mmol/mol (6.5%) or greater has now been recommended in Australia for diagnosis of type 2 diabetes.
The HbA1c test should greatly simplify the diagnostic pathway, negating the need for oral glucose tolerance tests in the majority of patients. However, improved performance and precision of the assay with its standardisation across Australia is required.
Many clinical situations can impact on the HbA1c assay and the clinician needs to be aware of these if it is to be used appropriately for diagnosis.