HbA1c: converting old to new

By | 12 March, 2012
A brand new scale, yesterday

A brand new scale, yesterday

Having had to resort to Dr Google to translate my latest HbA1c result into something meaningful, I thought it might be useful to publish a conversion table for new HbA1c measurements. Since October 2011 the way HbA1c results are expressed has changed – from % to mmol/mol. Mostly this has been done to mess with your head, but there is also a secondary reason about trying to standardise measures all around the world to make it easier to compare results from different laboratories and research trials.

Given the UK has been trying to shift from imperial to metric measurement since 1965 yet many people still respond to the question “how many metres is that?” with “about 3 feet” I’m thinking these changes may take a little while to sink in. So ShootUp has a handy guide.

Ye olde HbA1c measurement (%)       Shiny new IFCC HbA1c measurement (mmol/mol)
6.0                                                                           42
6.5                                                                           48
7.0                                                                           53
7.5                                                                           58
8.0                                                                           64
9.0                                                                           75

If you have a calculator to hand, you might want this handy formula to convert your own numbers:

New mmol/mol = [Old % – 2.15] x 10.929
Old % = [New mmol/mol divided by 10.929] + 2.15

So if your new number is 53, divide it by 10.929, then add 2.15 and round up a bit to discover that’s roughly 7% in old money.

And if your old number was 8% and you want to know what that means in the new world, take away 2.15 and then multiply the result by 10.929 to become enlightened.

Or you could use Diabetes UK’s handy HbA1c converter.

Category: Living with diabetes Tags: ,

About Alison

Diagnosed with Type One in 1983 at the age of four, Alison's been at this for a while now. She uses Humalog in a combined insulin pump and continuous glucose monitoring system and any blood glucose meter as long as it takes five seconds or less.

5 thoughts on “HbA1c: converting old to new

  1. Steve Miles

    I think I’ll just try to remeber to get something in the 50’s is good

  2. Donald Thomson

    Suspect I’ll be looking at 65 or lower next time I get tested. Being in the 50s is an unachievable dream to me . . .

      1. Donald Thomson

        That’s another dream entirely. Currently the usual story – improved HBA1C number at the expense of increased hypos, leading to scoffing down vast quantities of biscuits leading to weight gain. Vicious circle. Did manage 20 min on the exercise bike this morning without a hypo, though. . .

  3. katherine cromwell

    Excellent I go today. OMG my bloods are up !
    I should get the results of the cholesterol !
    I finally have proof of BP going high when I see my consultant!
    Stressed about a Doctor !! I never used to be. It used to be a very informal chat, yes no problems pat on the back see you in what 12 months. Now new doctor and every 4 months because of this Gold Standard that they like to achieve. Yes I know its better that way and I wouldn’t really want it any other way ….but! breathe. Rant over.
    thanks @Alison for the update.


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