Acta bioquímica clínica latinoamericana
versión impresa ISSN 0325-2957
LITTLE, Randie R.; ROHLFING, Curt L. y SACKS, David B.. Status of Hemoglobin A1c measurement and goals for improvement: from chaos to order for improving diabetes care. Acta bioquím. clín. latinoam. [online]. 2011, vol.45, n.2, pp. 349-361. ISSN 0325-2957.
BACKGROUND: The Diabetes Control and Complications Trial (DCCT) and United Kingdom Prospective Diabetes Study (UKPDS) established the importance of hemoglobin A1c (Hb A1c) as a predictor of outcome in patients with diabetes mellitus. In 1994, the American Diabetes Association began recommending specific Hb A1c targets, but lack of comparability among assays limited the ability of clinicians to use these targets. The National Glycohemoglobin Standardization Program(NGSP) was implemented in 1996 to standardize Hb A1c results to those of the DCCT/UKPDS. CONTENT: The NGSP certifies manufacturers of Hb A1c methods as traceable to the DCCT. The certification criteria have been tightened over time and the NGSP has worked with the College of American Pathologists in tightening proficiency-testing requirements. As a result, variability of Hb A1c results among clinical laboratories has been considerably reduced. The IFCC has developed a reference system for Hb A1c that facilitates metrological traceability to a higher order. The NGSP maintains traceability to the IFCC network via ongoing sample comparisons. There has been controversy over whether to report Hb A1c results in IFCC or NGSP units, or as estimated average glucose. Individual countries are making this decision. SUMMARY: Variability among Hb A1c results has been greatly reduced. Not all countries will report Hb A1c in the same units, but there are established equations that enable conversion between different units. Hb A1c is now recommended for diagnosing diabetes, further accentuating the need for optimal assay performance. The NGSPwill continue efforts to improve Hb A1c testing to ensure that clinical needs are met.