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April 11, 2008

Hypoglycemia, Other

Question from Richland, Washington, USA:

When a diabetic experiences a rebound caused by a low blood sugar, what would you think the range of those rebound blood sugars could be? I know some go up in the 300s mg/dl [over 16.7 mmol/L], even higher. I am wondering if it is possible that even a 180 mg/dl [10.0 mmol/L] to 225 mg/dl [12.5 mmol/L] could be a rebound. Could how much insulin your body is still producing be a factor in the rebound blood sugar? Also, do you think a rebound happens ONLY when your child is experiencing a dangerous low or could it happen when the blood sugar is just dropping to fast? There are times when my son eats like a growing teen and other times when he will eat hardly anything throughout the day. On days he eats hardly anything and has started off with a great blood sugar number and is high hours later, I am always questioning which one of those 100 causes might it be. I am wondering if it is possible that the body is picking up a quick drop, not necessarily a dangerous low, and causing a release of insulin which is acting like a rebound which is causing the body to be more resistant to the insulin by treating these highs in the day to follow. Is this possible?

Answer:

It is hard to know. Maybe it could also be there isn’t enough basal insulin and this is just a reflection of that. (I’m assuming there isn’t a bolus with no food). The easiest way to know is to follow the glucose at frequent intervals and look for the lows. Children do rebound after a low…sometimes I wonder if it isn’t also from the treatment.

LD