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From San Angelo, Texas, USA:

I have had diabetes for almost 15 years, and I just now had a recent episode with DKA. What would be a common sign that DKA is approaching? How would it be easily prevented (if at all) at home or where ever you are without going to the hospital?


The most obvious sign of impending DKA [diabetic ketoacidosis] is that your blood glucoses are elevated. I hope you are in contact with a diabetes team and can discuss with them how much extra insulin you need to take to cover a high blood glucose. Excessive thirst and feeling tired or just out of sorts can also be clues, but the best is an actual blood glucose and then you need to know how to interpret that through your team.


[Editor's comment: DKA is a preventable complication of diabetes. The most important thing to do is to monitor your blood sugar on a regular basis, increasing the frequency of monitoring to (every hour or two) if you see an elevated blood sugar until it reaches acceptable levels. You also need to be checking for urine ketones whenever your blood glucose is greater than 240mg/dl [13.3 mmol/L]. As Lois has said, your diabetes team should provide you with a correction dose of Humalog, Novolog or Regular insulin to get your blood sugar back down. If your short-acting insulin does not appear to have an effect on your blood glucose level, try a new unopened vial. Also see hyperglycemia and Sick Days. SS]

[Editor's comment: Any acute illness with recurrent vomiting (leading to dehydration), would be very worrisome for setting up a situation where DKA would be likely. WWQ]

Original posting 20 Jan 2002
Posted to Hyperglycemia and DKA


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Last Updated: Tuesday April 06, 2010 15:09:30
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