How often should I plan on seeing my doctor if I have diabetes?

Elaine Koontz
Nutrition & Dietetics

The following guidelines might help you to better plan your appointments and tests:

  • A1c test (if your blood glucose is not stable), blood pressure check, weight check, and foot check every three months
  • A1c test (if your blood glucose is stable) and dental exam every six months
  • Physical exam, comprehensive foot exam, blood cholesterol and blood fat tests, kidney tests, dilated eye exam, and flu shot annually


The frequency of medical visits required for your diabetes will vary according to how long you've had diabetes, your ability to adjust your treatment regimen effectively to maintain good blood glucose control, and whether you have diabetic complications or other medical problems that may interfere with your diabetes management.

At a minimum, all patients with diabetes should plan on seeing a doctor twice a year. Recharging your motivation to achieve good blood glucose control is an important part of every visit. You should have an A1C test done then, or if you are on insulin, you should have the test done quarterly to see how your blood glucose control is doing.

In addition, every patient with diabetes should have someone he or she can contact on short notice to discuss problems as they arise, such as unexplained high blood glucose or sudden illness. This person need not be a physician but may be a certified diabetes educator (CDE), registered dietitian (RD), nurse practitioner, or nurse case manager.

Continue Learning about Diabetes


Diabetes mellitus (MEL-ih-tus), often referred to as diabetes, is characterized by high blood glucose (sugar) levels that result from the body’s inability to produce enough insulin and/or effectively utilize the insulin. Diabetes ...

is a serious, life-long condition and the sixth leading cause of death in the United States. Diabetes is a disorder of metabolism (the body's way of digesting food and converting it into energy). There are three forms of diabetes. Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease that accounts for five- to 10-percent of all diagnosed cases of diabetes. Type 2 diabetes may account for 90- to 95-percent of all diagnosed cases. The third type of diabetes occurs in pregnancy and is referred to as gestational diabetes. Left untreated, gestational diabetes can cause health issues for pregnant women and their babies. People with diabetes can take preventive steps to control this disease and decrease the risk of further complications.

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.