Prevalence of high HbA1c levels in Brazilian adolescents: The Study of Cardiovascular Risk in Adolescents

Rita de Cássia Lima Fernandes, Gabriela H. Teló, Felipe V. Cureau, Laura A. Barufaldi, Maria Cristina C. Kuschnir, Beatriz D. Schaan, Moyses Szklo, Katia V. Bloch

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1 Scopus citations


Aim To evaluate the prevalence of elevated glycated haemoglobin (HbA1c) levels in a population of adolescents participating in the Study of Cardiovascular Risk in Adolescents. Methods This is a school-based cross-sectional study based on a complex sample of adolescents 12–17 years old representative at the national and macro-regional levels and for each Brazilian state capital. Blood was collected in schools and then evaluated in a single laboratory. HbA1c levels were considered elevated if ⩾5.7% (39 mmol/mol) and were analyzed according to sex, age, macro-region, type of school, skin color, and nutritional status. Results Data from 37,804 adolescents were analyzed. The mean level of HbA1c was 5.4% (95%CI 5.4–5.4) (36 mmol/mol [95%CI 36–36]), and 20.5% (95%CI 19.1–22.0) of adolescents presented values ⩾5.7% (⩾39 mmol/mol). Among males, 23.6% (95%CI 21.8–25.6) showed elevated HbA1c levels compared to 17.5% (95%CI 15.9–19.2) observed in females. The prevalence of elevated levels of HbA1c was higher in adolescents with black skin color (27.6%; 95%CI 23.2–32.4) vs. white skin color (16.9%; 95%CI 15.4–18.5), and higher in those who studied in public schools (21.6%; 95%CI 20.0–23.4) vs. private schools (16.7%; 95%CI 14.7–19.0). Among obese adolescents, 29.7% (95%CI 25.4–34.3) had elevated levels of HbA1c, compared to 19.3% (95%CI 18.0–20.7) in normal weight students and 19.7% (95%CI 17.1–22.6) in overweight adolescents. Conclusions Obese male adolescents of lower socioeconomic status had a higher prevalence of elevated HbA1c levels. Our findings highlight the importance of focusing on this high risk group for interventions to prevent diabetes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-9
Number of pages9
JournalDiabetes Research and Clinical Practice
StatePublished - Mar 1 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • Adolescent
  • Developing countries
  • Diabetes mellitus
  • Hemoglobin A, glycosylated
  • Obesity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Endocrinology


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