HbA1c Below 7.6 Reduces Vascular Complications in Type 1 Diabetes

This article originally appeared here.
Incidence of proliferative retinopathy and persistent macroalbuminuria rose as average hemoglobin A1c increased.
Incidence of proliferative retinopathy and persistent macroalbuminuria rose as average hemoglobin A1c increased.

(HealthDay News) -- For patients with type 1 diabetes, long-term weighted mean hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) is associated with development of severe microvascular complications, according to a study published online Dec. 15 in Diabetes Care.

Maria Nordwall, M.D., Ph.D., from Linköping University in Norrköping, Sweden, and colleagues conduced a longitudinal observation study involving an unselected population of 451 patients diagnosed with type 1 diabetes during 1983 to 1987, before age 35. The authors measured HbA1c from diagnosis through 20 to 24 years of follow-up, and calculated long-term weighted mean HbA1c. Complications in relation to HbA1c levels were examined.

The researchers found that increasing long-term mean HbA1c correlated with sharply increased and earlier incidence of proliferative retinopathy and persistent macroalbuminuria. Among patients with long-term weighted mean HbA1c below 7.6 percent, none developed proliferative retinopathy or persistent macroalbuminuria. Among those with long-term mean HbA1c above 9.5 percent, 51 percent developed proliferative retinopathy and 23 percent developed persistent macroalbuminuria.

"Keeping HbA1c below 7.6 percent (60 mmol/mol) as a treatment target seems to prevent proliferative retinopathy and persistent macroalbuminuria for up to 20 years," the authors write.

Source

  1. Nordwall, M, et al. Diabetes Care, 2014; doi:10.2337/dc14-1203
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