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Long Term Complications Of Dka

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How Does Ketoacidosis Affect The Human Brain?

Diabetic Ketoacidosis (DKA) is the body’s emergency reaction to glucose starvation in the absence of insulin. It is a disastrous reaction — in general, it makes things worse rather than better, and starts a vicious cycle of blood acidity, rising blood glucose, dehydration, and blood hyperosmolality (high concentration of dissolved stuff) that can be hard to break. One of the hardest-hit organs in DKA is the brain, due to the dehydration and acidic blood entering that sensitive organ. Severe DKA may lead to brain swelling (edema) which is life-threatening. But recent studies have shown that even a short, apparently fully-recovered stint of DKA leads to measurable brain injury. Diabetic Ketoacidosis (DKA) is a life–threatening consequence of diabetes. DKA occurs when there is a lack of insulin in the body causing hyperglycemia. As a result of the inability of glucose to enter the cells, the body must find other means to obtain energy. As such, fat breakdown occurs resulting in the accumulation of fatty acids. The fatty acids are metabolized to ketones that cause the blood to become acidotic (pH less than7.3). Because glucose remains in the blood, there is an increase in thirst Continue reading >>

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Popular Questions

  1. Christopher

    In another thread someone made the statement that kids who have DKA at dx are at "great risk for complications down the road". It was also said that those who have "profound" DKA at dx have more difficulty with blood glucose control.
    I have not heard this before and would like to see any studies that discuss these issues, or hear anecdotal evidence from those parents who may (or may not) have experienced this.

  2. Dvbo79

    I would like to read a study on this as well. My son was in severe DKA when diagnosed. We are almost but not quite a year in. He doesn't appear to have a harder time than any other type 1 toddler. Very curious about this...

  3. obtainedmist

    This totally goes against what happened to us! DD came back from a 5 month exchange in Italy having lost 32 lbs and in big-time DKA! However, she has had a relatively easy time maintaining her bgs and good A1C's. I really do think that there are so many variations of this disease (YDMV) that this kind of generalization misses the mark!

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