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May 29, 2005

Other Illnesses

Question from Hanford, Connecticut, USA:

My four year old son was diagnosed with ketotic hypoglycemia six months ago by a metabolic/genetic specialist. His doctor started him on levocarnitine, 750mg, twice a day, even though he tested negative for both a carnitine deficiency or a fat oxidation disorder. Is this standard practice? Also, since his diagnosis, he has continued to have intermittent episodes of pallor, fine hand tremors, and frequent night wakenings despite following the recommended diet and medications. Does this sound like ketotic hypoglycemia? Should I seek a second opinion?


From: DTeam Staff

You should ask these questions to the pediatric endocrinologist since they would know many more details than you have provided in your question. If the hypoglycemia persists while on carnitine, this would suggest that either the carnitine is not being given, not being absorbed, the dose is too low or this is not the correct treatment/diagnosis. If you are still not happy with the answers to these questions from your endocrinologist, then go get a second opinion from another pediatric endocrinologist and have with you all the detailed testing so that the second specialist does not necessarily have to repeat the testing.