However, very few of those patients were told they had prediabetes and only 23 percent of them began treatment for the condition, such as lifestyle changes or drug therapy, according to the study. The findings were published March 8 in the Journal of the American Board of Family Medicine.
“Even with blood test results in front of them, physicians weren’t detecting prediabetes in their patients in terms of making a diagnosis or providing some sort of management or treatment,” Mainous said.
“Identifying people with prediabetes and getting them some sort of treatment has been shown to be effective for slowing the progression to diabetes or stopping it altogether, and that is the goal of prevention,” he explained. “We don’t want to manage half the population with diabetes. What we want to do is keep them from getting diabetes.”
Mainous said he is now conducting a survey of thousands of family doctors to learn why so many patients with prediabetes aren’t receiving treatment.