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March 13, 1967

Diagnosis of Early Diabetes Mellitus

Author Affiliations

From the Harvard Medical School, Boston.

JAMA. 1967;199(11):835-836. doi:10.1001/jama.1967.03120110107018

Early diagnosis in diabetes mellitus as in many other diseases is still dependent on a combination of clinical and laboratory observations. There has been a continual search for screening and diagnostic tests with optimum degrees of sensitivity and specificity. Long-term prospective studies have established the oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT) as the most specific test of diabetes mellitus today.1 Prior to its performance a diet normal in carbohydrate intake (minimum of 150 gm per day) must be assured for at least one week. The patient in the fasting state (12 to 14 hours after a previous meal) is given 100 gm of glucose orally as a 20% solution in water (lemon flavored). The blood glucose level is determined at stated intervals, with the upper limits of normal for an adult (nonpregnant) up to age 50 as follows: fasting, 110; one hour 170; two hours, 120; and three hours 110