Definitions – Diabetes Visualizations

Diabetes
Fasting plasma glucose (FPG) greater than or equal to 126 mg/dl or a glycohemoglobin (A1C) level greater than or equal to 6.5% or currently taking diabetic pills or insulin to lower high blood sugar level or ever been told by a doctor or other health professional that one has diabetes.

Prediabetes
Fasting plasma glucose (FPG) greater than or equal to 100 mg/dl and less than 126 mg/dl or an A1C level greater than or equal to 5.7 and A1C less than 6.5%.

Normal
Fasting plasma glucose (FPG) less than 100 mg/dl and an A1C level less than 6.5% and currently not taking any diabetic pills or insulin to lower blood sugar levels.

Physician Diagnosed Diabetes
Ever been told by a doctor or other health professional that one has diabetes.

Undiagnosed Diabetes
Ever been told by a doctor or other health professional that one does not have diabetes, or one has borderline diabetes.

Treated
Currently taking diabetic pills or insulin to lower high blood sugar level.

Not Treated
Currently not taking diabetic pills or insulin to lower high blood sugar level.

Aware
Either currently taking diabetic pills or insulin to lower high blood sugar level or ever been told by a doctor or other health professional that one has diabetes.

Unaware
Neither currently taking diabetic pills or insulin to lower high blood sugar level nor ever been told by a doctor or other health professional that one has diabetes but fasting plasma glucose greater than or equal to 126 mg/dl.

Not Treated and Unaware
Currently in treatment of diabetes but unaware of having diabetes.

Not Treated but Aware
Aware of having diabetes and currently not in a treatment of diabetes.

Treated and Uncontrolled
Currently in a treatment of diabetes but fasting plasma glucose greater than or equal to 126 mg/dl.

Treated and Controlled
Currently in a treatment of diabetes and fasting plasma glucose less than 100 mg/dl.

Cardiovascular Disease
Ever been told by a doctor or other health professional that one has congestive heart failure or coronary heart disease or angina/angina pectoris, or heart attack, or stroke.

Adjustment in Fasting Plasma Glucose

For consistency across all cycles, fasting glucose values were adjusted using recommended regression equations.

 

Types of Diabetes

The estimates of diabetes in these visualizations do not differentiate between type 1 and type 2 diabetes. However, because type 2 diabetes accounts for 90% to 95% of all diabetes cases, the data presented are likely to be more characteristic of type 2 diabetes.

 

Inclusion/Exclusion

People with missing values for either fasting glucose or A1C and pregnant women are excluded. Both Interviewed and mobile examination centers (MEC) examined participants only are included.

Race/Ethnicity

Hispanic designation to Race/Ethnicity represents Mexican-Americans up through 2006. After a sampling redesign in 2007, Hispanic designation includes all Hispanics. More details on survey design changes and analytic note can be found here.
Non-Hispanic Asians are reported separately only from 2011-12. Non-Hispanic Asians were included in the “Other” category in 2009-10.

Education

AA degree stands for Associate Degree.

 

Data Source and Methods

Data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys (NHANES) 1999-2016 are used for these visualizations. For smaller sub-populations the estimates are based on four years of data (two cycles merged) for statistical stability. Estimates are age-adjusted to the subpopulations based on the population distribution as of 2000 census. Appropriate sampling weights were used so that the sum of the weights added to the total U.S. population.

NHANES is a cross-sectional survey designed to monitor the health and nutritional status of the civilian noninstitutionalized U.S. population using highly stratified, multistage probability designs. The survey consists of interviews conducted in participants’ homes and standardized health examinations conducted in mobile examination centers (MECs). Diabetes mellitus was assessed by measures of fasting plasma glucose, two-hour glucose (OGTT) and serum insulin in participants aged 12 years and over in the morning examination session only. Glycohemoglobin measures are also available for a full sample. But for these visualizations, only fasting plasma glucose and glycohemoglobin values were used.

For more information about the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, you may visit the NHANES website at: http://www.cdc.gov/nhanes.