OBJECTIVE - To reveal the relationship between fasting and 2-h postload plasma glucose and to examine the appropriate fasting glucose cutoff as the primary screening test for diabetes. RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS - We recruited 5,303 subjects from preventive services of the National Cheng Kung University Hospital. Exclusion criteria were age <20 years, pregnancy, known diabetes, and a history of recent surgery, trauma, or illness. All subjects received the 75-g oral glucose tolerance test. The relationship between fasting and 2-h glucose was examined. Sensitivities, specificities, efficiency, and predictive values were assessed at different cutoffs of fasting glucose for prediction of diabetes. RESULTS - The best fit model for the relationship between fasting and 2-h glucose was fasting glucose = 4.914 - 0.060 x (2-h glucose) + 0.0144 x (2-h glucose)2. From this model, the fasting glucose was 6.0 mmol/l when 2-h glucose was 11.1 mmol/l. A fasting glucose with 6.25 mmol/l gave the same diabetes prevalence as the World Health Organization 2-h glucose criterion. When 7.8 mmol/l was the fasting glucose cutoff, the sensitivity was 28.5%. Lowering the cutoff from 7.8 to 7.0 mmol/l increased the sensitivity by 11.2% and slightly reduced the specificity and positive predictive value. If the cutoffs were 6.25 and 6.0 mmol/l, the sensitivity increased and the specificity and the positive predictive value decreased accordingly. CONCLUSIONS - Our results suggest that fasting glucose as a screening criterion for diabetes could be revised downward to 7.0 mmol/l, because the slight reduction of positive predictive value was more than balanced by an apparent increase of sensitivity and insignificant change of specificity.
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