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June 11, 2003


Question from Binghamton, New York, USA:

Four days ago, my 12 year old son (who is on Lente with Humalog) was hospitalized with a blood sugar of 973 mg/dl [54.1 mmol/L], and this morning he had 20 units of Lente with 30 units of Humalog, and his blood sugar is 320 mg/dl [17.8 mmol/L] at 1:00 PM. If a person is insulin resistant what else can be done? Is there a safe limit as to how much insulin a 12 year old can receive during a 24 hour period? I am scared and don't know if he needs to see another endocrinologist, but this city only has one pediatric endocrinologist. Could you please let me know what you advise? Is there someone you would recommend taking him to? I need to help him now!!


You should go back and talk to your endocrinology team about your concerns. They can tell you a specific treatment plan for your son and help you understand their plan. There is no exact amount of insulin for any individual. All such decisions are made based upon blood glucose levels and patterns.


[Editor’s comment: It’s unclear if your son has been discharged from the hospital and is back at home. I should point out that there’s always a concern that preteens and teens might not always give themselves their full and correct doses of insulin. You should plan to give him his shots for a while, and give him a rest from doing his own shots and from all the stress he must be feeling, and see if things dramatically improve.