The following are important tests for basic diabetes care. Your doctor may recommend some tests more often than indicated.

Target blood glucose (sugar) and blood pressure levels may differ, depending on your health.

When What test?

At diagnosis

Type 2:

  • ACR*/Kidney test: Urine test performed at the lab
  • Eye examination: Through dilated pupils by an eye-care specialist
  • Nerve damage test: Using a 10-g monofilament or 128-Hz tuning fork
  • Cholesterol and other blood fat tests: A blood test
Approximately every 3 months

Type 1 and 2:

  • A1C blood test** (goal: 7.0 per cent or below for most people with diabetes)
  • Blood pressure (goal: below 130/80 mm Hg)
  • Review of home blood sugar monitoring record
Every year

Type 1 and 2:

  • ACR*/Kidney test: urine test performed at the lab (at least once a year and for type 1: Once a year if you have had diabetes for at least 5 years)
  • Foot exam at every visit right away for an ingrown toenail or any cut or sore that doesn’t heal
  • Meter check against the results of a blood test at the lab at least once a year
  • Cholesterol and other blood fat tests^

Every 1 to 2 years

Eye examination by an eye specialist

  • Type 2: every 1–2 years (if no eye disease present)†
  • Type 1: once a year† if you are over age 15 and have had diabetes for at least 5 years


Type 1 and 2:

  • Questions about erection problems
  • Questions about depression and/or anxiety
  • Questions about healthy eating and physical activity

For young children and pregnant women, the timing and type of test may be different.

* Albumin/creatinine ratio
** A1C targets for pregnant women, older adults and children 12 years of age and under are different.
† More often if eye disease is present.
^ More often if treatment is initiated.

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