The purpose of screening is early diagnosis and treatment. Screening tests are usually administered to people without current symptoms, but who may be at high risk for certain diseases or conditions.

Screening Tests

Random Plasma Glucose Test

As part of your routine physical exam, your doctor may do a blood test and check your blood glucose level. A measurement of 200 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dl) [11.1 mmol/L] or higher indicates that you may have type 1 diabetes. Your doctor will ask you if you have symptoms of hyperglycemia, like unexplained weight loss, frequent urination, and excessive thirst.

Your doctor will do further testing to determine if you do have type 1 diabetes.

Islet Cell Antibodies

Increasing evidence shows that islet cell antibodies appear in the blood long before the development of diabetes symptoms. In many cases, these antibodies seem to slowly attack the pancreas. While there is no way to stop this progression, researchers continue to investigate new treatments.

Screening Guidelines

According to the American Diabetes Association, screening for type 1 diabetes should only be done in people who are at a high risk for the condition, such as those who have a family history of type 1 diabetes or have a personal history of hyperglycemia.