American Diabetes Association lowers A1C target for children

SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. — The American Diabetes Association will lower its target recommendation for blood-glucose levels for children with Type 1 diabetes, according to a statement released at the association's 74th Scientific Sessions.

The association now recommends that children under the age of 19 years diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes try to maintain an A1C level lower than 7.5%. Previously, the levels could be as high as 8.5%. Research now shows that prolonged hyperglycemia (high blood-glucose levels) can lead to complications in children, such as cardiovascular disease and kidney disease — complications that at one time were believed to only occur in adults.

"The evidence shows that there is a greater risk of harm from prolonged hyperglycemia that would occur if children maintained an A1C of 8.5% over time. This is not to say we are no longer concerned about hypoglycemia, but we now have better tools to monitor for hypoglycemia," said Jane Chiang, M.D., SVP, medical and community affairs, American Diabetes Association and one of the lead authors on the Association's Position Statement. "The 7.5%  target is evidence-based; however, we want to emphasize that blood glucose and A1C targets must be individualized to safely achieve the best outcomes."

 

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