Skip to content
The difference between...
DianeR01 posted:
What is the difference between a Hemoglobin A1c and a glycohemoglobin test? I will be going for blood work tomorrow morning and was looking at the last results. The Glycohemoglobin test was done last and came back at 7.6 which I and my doctor interpreted as Hemoglobin A1c which is what is normally done.

There is a disclaimer at the bottom of the report which says, "Current ADA guidelines recommend a treatment goal of <7.0% HgbA1c for diabetic patients, which corresponds to a <9.0% Glycohemoglobin result with this method."

I am thinking the 7.6 from September is really lower on the test I normally get because the report states the target range for a diabetic adult is <9.0. While a healthy adult is 3.9-7.3. Sounds like there might be some confusion.

Can anyone shed some light on this for me?

DavidHueben responded:

I believe they are the same thing.

Red meat is not bad for you. Now blue-green meat, that is bad for you! -Tommy Smothers
DianeR01 replied to DavidHueben's response:

I read this last night and while they may be essentially the same test the disclaimer on the bottom of the lab report leads me to believe they may on differing scales.

I have a 7am lab appt so I will take my "evidence" back to the maker and ask questions.

Thank you for your help

nwsmom replied to DianeR01's response:
From what I remember, A1c is a glycohemoglobin. There are others that are usually not measured. The A1c test is specific for A1c, sort of like measuring blood glucose: there may (are) be other sugars present, but the tests are usually specific for glucose.

Happy Holidays, everyone!
DianeR01 replied to nwsmom's response:
Thanks Nwsmom!

Well, my efforts were thwarted by a system which allowed me to make an appointment at a lab which was closed for the holiday!


I have just set an appt for Monday and will once again take my "evidence" and look for additional clarification. My last A1c was likely not as bad as we thought it was.
Hootyowl2 responded:
I havent got a clue on that one, but it sounds like another way to keep diabetics confused on their personal care. I hope my doctor sticks with the HbA1c test and not this other kind.

flutetooter replied to nwsmom's response:
I do know from MY lab reports that the two tests measure slightly different things and have different reference ranges for being out of the limits. The glyco.... is higher on my reports than the A1c on the same day. Both are posted on the same lab report. I do think that nwsmom is correct in that the glyco... measures more kinds of sugars maybe includingf fructose. The A1c I think just measures glucose.
If at first you don't succeed, try, try again!
DavidHueben replied to flutetooter's response:

The glycohemoglobin (A1C) test does not measure the amount of glucose in the bloodstream. It does measure the percentage of hemaglobin molecules to which glucose has become attached.

From that result, the previous three months average blood glucose levels can be derived.

Red meat is not bad for you. Now blue-green meat, that is bad for you! -Tommy Smothers
An_202794 replied to nwsmom's response:
nwsmom..there are no other sugars circulating in the blood. every kind of sugar we eat like fructose or starch etc get converted to glucose during digestion, as it is the only form of sugar the cells can use.

Actually, everything we eat, including fats and proteins are converted into glucose for use by the cells
flutetooter replied to An_202794's response:
Fats NEVER are converted to sugars. The EXCESS sugars are converted by the body into fats for storage (or excreted by the kidneys), but the fats remain fats. They can be used for body fuel as fats. Different types of exercise tend to burn either more carbs or more fats.

Proteins are converted to sugars much more slowly than carbs, and proteins will also raise the blood glucose, but not as much or as fast as carbs. Fats do not affect the blood glucose directly and do not cause a rise in blood glucose but many make your cells more insulin resistant because they are full of fat and can't function properly. S

omewhere I read that fructose is handled directly by the liver and doesn't go through quite the same process as glucose, but I will do more research on that one.
If at first you don't succeed, try, try again!
betaquartz replied to flutetooter's response:
Again, they have found that the more they know, the more they have to learn. This is especially true of Fructose metabolism. Try the following link for some information that may help you make decisions about that HFCS or even table sugar:

The other links here pose interesting questions also.
betaquartz replied to betaquartz's response:
It should also be noted that in truth, fruit only contains about 5-8 grams of Fructose. You were correct when you said that Fructose was processed by the liver. It is interesting to note that table sugar being half fructose and glucose is metabolized in the liver and the muscles of the body.
nwsmom replied to DavidHueben's response:
And all of the hemoglobin molecules are in the red cells. (Free hemoglobin is pathologic.)
nwsmom replied to An_202794's response:
In certain rare conditions, other sugars are circulating and are excreted as such in the urine: fructosuria, for example.

Helpful Tips

Getting blood sugar under control using insulin
I normally like Dr. Gabe Mirkin 's advice and newsletters. But in one of his most recent newsletter articles, he commits the same medical ... More
Was this Helpful?
2 of 6 found this helpful

Expert Blog

Conquering Diabetes - Michael Dansinger, MD

Dr. Michael Dansinger provides thoughtful tips for those with type 2 diabetes or pre-diabetes who want to reclaim their health...Read More

Related Drug Reviews

  • Drug Name User Reviews

Report Problems With Your Medications to the FDA

FDAYou are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.