Total glycosylated hemoglobin (HbA1) and fructosamine were evaluated as screening tools for detection of glucose-tolerance abnormalities in 144 asymptomatic subjects undergoing a 75-g oral glucose tolerance test. Subjects were classified according to World Health Organization criteria as having normal (n = 78), impaired (n = 40), or diabetic (n = 26) glucose tolerance. We found good specificity for HbA1 and fructosamine (100 and 97%, respectively) but low sensitivity (15 and 19%, respectively). At the intersection of the curves of sensitivity and specificity drawn from various thresholds of normality, both sensitivity and specificity were 75% for HbA1 and 55% for fructosamine. Thus, neither HbA1 nor fructosamine seems to be suitable for the diagnosis of mild abnormalities in glucose tolerance.

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