Often, prediabetes has no signs or symptoms.
One possible sign that you may be at risk of type 2 diabetes is darkened skin on certain parts of the body. This condition is called acanthosis nigricans. Common areas that may be affected include the neck, armpits, elbows, knees and knuckles.
Classic red flags that suggest you've moved from prediabetes to type 2 diabetes include:
- Increased thirst
- Frequent urination
- Blurred vision
When to see a doctor
Consult your doctor if you're concerned about diabetes or if you notice any type 2 diabetes signs or symptoms — increased thirst and frequent urination, fatigue, and blurred vision.
Ask your doctor about blood glucose screening if you have any risk factors for prediabetes, such as:
Dec. 17, 2014
- You're overweight, with a body mass index above 25
- You're inactive
- You're age 45 or older
- You have a family history of type 2 diabetes
- You're African-American, Hispanic, American Indian, Asian-American or a Pacific Islander
- You developed gestational diabetes when you were pregnant or gave birth to a baby who weighed more than 9 pounds (4.1 kilograms)
- You have polycystic ovary syndrome — a condition characterized by irregular menstrual periods, excess hair growth and obesity
- You have high blood pressure
- Your high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol is below 35 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL) (0.9 millimoles per liter, or mmol/L) or your triglyceride level is above 250 mg/dL (2.83 mmol/L)
- American Diabetes Association. Standards of medical care in diabetes — 2014. Diabetes Care. 2014;37(suppl):S14.
- Insulin resistance and pre-diabetes. National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases. http://diabetes.niddk.nih.gov/dm/pubs/insulinresistance/. Accessed Nov. 24, 2014.
- Diabetes symptoms. American Diabetes Association. http://www.diabetes.org/diabetes-basics/symptoms/?loc=db-slabnav. Accessed Nov. 26, 2014.
- DeFronzo RA, et al. Preservation of beta-cell function: The key to diabetes prevention. Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism. 2011; 96:2354.
- Senechal M, et al. Independent and combined effect of diet and exercise in adults with prediabetes. Diabetes, Metabolic Syndrome and Obesity: Targets and Therapy. 2014;7:521.
- McCulloch DK, et al. Prevention of type 2 diabetes mellitus. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Nov. 19, 2014.
- Natural medicines in the clinical management of diabetes. Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database. http://www.naturaldatabase.com. Accessed Nov. 26, 2014.