Type 1 Diabetes: Test Schedule 3 to 5 Years After Diagnosis

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Type 1 Diabetes: Test Schedule 3 to 5 Years After Diagnosis

Topic Overview

The Canadian Diabetes Association recommends that you have these additional examinations and tests every year after you have had type 1 diabetes for 5 years.1

Examinations and tests done annually after having diabetes for 5 years

When to start

Name of tests

After having diabetes for 5 years

Visit an ophthalmologist or an optometrist for a dilated eye examination (ophthalmoscopy).

Have a foot examination to check for diabetic neuropathy. Your doctor will look at your feet for sores and calluses at every visit beginning at diagnosis. At least once a year, have a test using a 10 g monofilament to check for sensation in your feet. People with one or more foot problems may need to have their feet examined more than once a year.

See your doctor and have a microalbumin urine test, which evaluates your urine for the presence of a protein called albumin. Albumin is normally found in the blood. Albumin is filtered by the kidneys and then returned to the bloodstream. When the kidneys are working properly, albumin is not present in the urine. But when the kidneys are damaged, small amounts of albumin leak into the urine. This condition is called microalbuminuria. Either of the following tests may be done.

  • Microalbuminuria dipstick test, to estimate the amount of protein in a urine sample
  • Spot urine test for microalbuminuria, to measure the exact amount of protein in a urine sample

Elevated microalbumin urine results point to kidney damage. One of the following tests may be done to find out the amount of protein released in your urine and estimate how severe the kidney damage is.

  • 24-hour urine test for protein, in which all the urine you produce for 24 hours is collected and the amount of protein present is determined
  • 24-hour urine test for creatinine clearance, in which a blood test for creatinine is done along with the urine test to estimate how much kidney function remains. This test is called a creatinine and creatinine clearance test.

Every year you will also have a blood creatinine test. The blood creatinine test shows how well your kidneys are working. A high creatinine level may mean your kidneys are not working properly.



  1. Canadian Diabetes Association (2008). Clinical practice guidelines for the prevention and management of diabetes in Canada. Available online: http://www.diabetes.ca/for-professionals/resources/2008-cpg.


By Healthwise Staff
Primary Medical Reviewer John Pope, MD - Pediatrics
Primary Medical Reviewer Anne C. Poinier, MD - Internal Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer David C.W. Lau, MD, PhD, FRCPC - Endocrinology
Last Revised January 13, 2011

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