A hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) test measures the amount of blood sugar (glucose) attached to hemoglobin. Hemoglobin is the part of your red blood cells that carries oxygen from your lungs to the rest of your body. An HbA1c test shows what the average amount of glucose attached to hemoglobin has been over the past three months. It's a three-month average because that's typically how long a red blood cell lives.

If your HbA1c levels are high, it may be a sign of diabetes, a chronic condition that can cause serious health problems, including heart disease, kidney disease, and nerve damage.

Other names: HbA1c, A1c, glycohemoglobin, glycated hemoglobin, glycosylated hemoglobin


To determine increased risk of developing diabetes, to diagnose diabetes/prediabetes, and to monitor diabetes and treatments.


This test is ordered as part of your annual bloodwork. A doctor may order the test if there are risk factors or symptoms indicating diabetes. If diagnosed with diabetes, glycemic goals and treatment plans are monitored with additional testing every 3-4 months (about 120 days).

  • Why do I need this test?

  • You may need an HbA1c test if you have symptoms of diabetes. These include:
  • Increased thirst
  • Increased urination
  • Blurred vision
  • Fatigue
  • Your health care provider may also order an HbA1c test if you are at higher risk for getting diabetes. Risk factors include:
  • Being overweight or obese
  • High blood pressure
  • History of heart disease
  • Physical inactivity
Hemoglobin A1C

Hemoglobin A1C

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Note: The medical information provided here in this website is for informational purposes only and is not to be used as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.