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AIM: To determine the glycosylated haemoglobin (HbA(1c)) cut-points for diabetes and impaired fasting glucose (IFG) among Asian Indians. METHODS: Participants (n=525) were a random sample selected from the India Health Study. Based on history and fasting plasma glucose (FPG), participants were classified into known diabetes, newly diagnosed diabetes (NDD), impaired fasting glucose (IFG) [ADA and WHO criteria] or normal fasting glucose (NFG). Receiver Operating Characteristic curves were used to identify the optimum sensitivity and specificity for defining HbA(1c) cut-points for NDD and IFG against the FPG criteria. RESULTS: There were 64 participants with a known history of diabetes. Of the remaining 461, IFG was present in 44.7% (ADA) and 18.2% (WHO), and 10.4% were NDD. Mean HbA(1c) were 5.4 (±0.04)% for NFG; 5.7 (±0.06)% among IFG-ADA, 5.8 (±0.09)% among IFG-WHO; 7.5 (±0.33)% for NDD and 8.4 (±0.32)% for known diabetes. Optimal HbA(1c) cut-point for NDD was 5.8% (sensitivity=75%, specificity=75.5%, AUC=0.819). Cut-point for IFG (ADA) was 5.5% (sensitivity=59.7%, specificity=59.9%, AUC=0.628) and for IFG (WHO) was 5.6% (sensitivity=60.7%, specificity=65.1%, AUC=0.671). CONCLUSION: In this study population from north and south regions of India, the HbA(1c) cut-point that defines NDD (≥5.8%) was much lower than that proposed by an international expert committee and the American Diabetes Association (≥6.5%). A cut-point of ≥5.5% or ≥5.6% defined IFG, and was slightly lower than the ≥5.7% for high risk proposed, but accuracy was less than 70%.

Original publication




Journal article


Prim Care Diabetes

Publication Date





95 - 102


Analysis of Variance, Asian Continental Ancestry Group, Biomarkers, Blood Glucose, Diabetes Mellitus, Fasting, Female, Glucose Intolerance, Glycated Hemoglobin A, Health Surveys, Humans, India, Male, Middle Aged, Predictive Value of Tests, Prevalence, ROC Curve