Diabetes Information

How do I know if I have Diabetes?

A simple Blood Test that is conducted at any Laboratory can help determine if you have Diabetes.

Diabetes symptoms

In type 1 diabetes, symptoms are often sudden and can be life-threatening; therefore it is usually diagnosed quite quickly. In type 2 diabetes, many people have no symptoms at all, while other signs can go unnoticed being seen as part of ‘getting older’.

Common symptoms include:

  • Being more thirsty than usual
  • Frequent urination
  • Feeling tired and lethargic
  • Increased Hunger
  • Having cuts that heal slowly
  • Blurred vision
  • Sudden weight loss (type 1)
  • Gradually putting on weight (type 2)
  • Feeling dizzy
  • Tingling in foot and hands
  • Vaginal infections

The following primary tests can be conducted to diagnose diabetes:-

  1. A Fasting Blood Glucose Test - The test should be taken in the morning on an empty stomach. The normal range readings should fall between 4.0-6.0 mmols. If the Blood Sugar value is 6.0mmol or higher it can indicate you may have Diabetes.
  2. A Random Blood Glucose Test - The test can be taken at any time during the day and you do not have to fast. If the reading of this test is > 7.8 mmols it can indicate you may have Diabetes.

You will need 2 elevated glucose readings or one of the above IF YOU HAVE NO SYMPTOMS

If YOU HAVE SYMPTOMS (thirst, weight loss,excess urination) and a high sugar then one high reading is enough to diagnose diabetes.


NOTE: If you do take any two of the primary tests it is advisable to take a second confirmation test such as a HBA1C (glycated haemoglobin) or a OGTT (Oral Glucose Tolerance Test).

What is a HBA1C Test?

This test provides an average of your blood glucose reading for the last 2 / 3 months. It is a good indicator of (i) confirming if you have Diabetes and / or (ii) informs a Physician the risk of a Diabetic patient developing complications. The table below gives will help you interpret the HBA1C results.

What is a OGTT?

The Oral Glucose Tolerance Test measures how your body responds to sugar (Glucose). This test is used to screen for pre-diabetes, type 2 diabetes and / or gestational diabetes. The Doctor will advise you on whether you need this test and you will be instructed NOT to eat, or drink certain fluids for up to 8-12 hours before the test. In addition to the above your Doctor may review your medications which could affect the test results and they will advise accordingly.

During the OGTT test, blood samples will be taken to measure the blood glucose levels in the body. A 1st sample will be taken and then you are given a sweet tasting glucose drink. Further blood samples are taken at 30 minute, one hour / or two hour intervals.