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How Does Ketoacidosis Cause Confusion

Diabetic Ketoacidosis

Diabetic Ketoacidosis

Print Overview Diabetic ketoacidosis is a serious complication of diabetes that occurs when your body produces high levels of blood acids called ketones. The condition develops when your body can't produce enough insulin. Insulin normally plays a key role in helping sugar (glucose) — a major source of energy for your muscles and other tissues — enter your cells. Without enough insulin, your body begins to break down fat as fuel. This process produces a buildup of acids in the bloodstream called ketones, eventually leading to diabetic ketoacidosis if untreated. If you have diabetes or you're at risk of diabetes, learn the warning signs of diabetic ketoacidosis — and know when to seek emergency care. Symptoms Diabetic ketoacidosis signs and symptoms often develop quickly, sometimes within 24 hours. For some, these signs and symptoms may be the first indication of having diabetes. You may notice: Excessive thirst Frequent urination Nausea and vomiting Abdominal pain Weakness or fatigue Shortness of breath Fruity-scented breath Confusion More-specific signs of diabetic ketoacidosis — which can be detected through home blood and urine testing kits — include: High blood sugar level (hyperglycemia) High ketone levels in your urine When to see a doctor If you feel ill or stressed or you've had a recent illness or injury, check your blood sugar level often. You might also try an over-the-counter urine ketones testing kit. Contact your doctor immediately if: You're vomiting and unable to tolerate food or liquid Your blood sugar level is higher than your target range and doesn't respond to home treatment Your urine ketone level is moderate or high Seek emergency care if: Your blood sugar level is consistently higher than 300 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL), or 16.7 mill Continue reading >>

Diabetic Ketoacidosis

Diabetic Ketoacidosis

Diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) is a potentially life-threatening complication of diabetes mellitus.[1] Signs and symptoms may include vomiting, abdominal pain, deep gasping breathing, increased urination, weakness, confusion, and occasionally loss of consciousness.[1] A person's breath may develop a specific smell.[1] Onset of symptoms is usually rapid.[1] In some cases people may not realize they previously had diabetes.[1] DKA happens most often in those with type 1 diabetes, but can also occur in those with other types of diabetes under certain circumstances.[1] Triggers may include infection, not taking insulin correctly, stroke, and certain medications such as steroids.[1] DKA results from a shortage of insulin; in response the body switches to burning fatty acids which produces acidic ketone bodies.[3] DKA is typically diagnosed when testing finds high blood sugar, low blood pH, and ketoacids in either the blood or urine.[1] The primary treatment of DKA is with intravenous fluids and insulin.[1] Depending on the severity, insulin may be given intravenously or by injection under the skin.[3] Usually potassium is also needed to prevent the development of low blood potassium.[1] Throughout treatment blood sugar and potassium levels should be regularly checked.[1] Antibiotics may be required in those with an underlying infection.[6] In those with severely low blood pH, sodium bicarbonate may be given; however, its use is of unclear benefit and typically not recommended.[1][6] Rates of DKA vary around the world.[5] In the United Kingdom, about 4% of people with type 1 diabetes develop DKA each year, while in Malaysia the condition affects about 25% a year.[1][5] DKA was first described in 1886 and, until the introduction of insulin therapy in the 1920s, it was almost univ Continue reading >>

Diabetic Ketoacidosis (dka)

Diabetic Ketoacidosis (dka)

Diabetic Ketoacidosis (DKA) Diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) occurs when the body does not have enough insulin. Insulin is what breaks down sugar into energy. When insulin is not present to break down sugars, our body begins to break down fat. Fat break down produces ketones which spill into the urine and cause glucose build up in the blood, thus acidifying the body. Because sugar is not entering into our body’s cells for energy breakdown, the sugar is being processed by the kidneys and excreted through the urine; as a result, we become dehydrated and our blood becomes even more acidic. This leads to sickness and hospitalization if not treated. If a person’s blood sugar is over 240, they should start checking their blood for ketones. If you have diabetes, or love someone who does, being aware of warning signs of diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) can help save a life. Early Symptoms of DKA: High blood glucose level, usually > 300 High volume to ketones present in blood or urine Frequent urination or thirst that lasts for a day or more Dry skin and mouth Rapid shallow breathing Abdominal pain (especially in children) Muscle stiffness or aches Flushed face As DKA Worsens: Decreases alertness, confusion – brain is dehydrating Deep, labored, and gasping breathing Headache Breath that smells fruity or like fingernail polish remover Nausea and/or vomiting Abdomen may be tender and hurt if touched Decreased consciousness, coma, death If you think you might have DKA, test for ketones. If ketones are present, call your health care provider right away. To treat high blood sugar, hydrate with water or sugar free, caffeine free drinks. Sugar free popsicles and snacks are also good alternatives. Always call the doctor if vomiting goes on for more than two hours. Symptoms can go from mild Continue reading >>

What Is The Difference Between Hyperglycemia And Hypoglycemia?

What Is The Difference Between Hyperglycemia And Hypoglycemia?

By Debra A. Sokol-McKay, MS, CVRT, CDE, CLVT, OTR/L, SCLV What Is Hyperglycemia? In relation to diabetes, hyperglycemia refers to chronically high blood glucose levels. Most medical professionals define hyperglycemia by using the blood glucose goals that you and your physician have established and combining those goals with the blood glucose target ranges set by the American Diabetes Association. It's important to understand that you'll probably experience high blood glucose levels from time to time, despite your best efforts at control. As with any chronic disease, talk with your physician and diabetes care team if the pattern of your blood glucose readings is consistently higher or lower than your blood glucose goals. Complications from Hyperglycemia Persistent hyperglycemia can cause a wide range of chronic complications that affect almost every system in your body. When large blood vessels are affected, it can lead to: Stroke (cerebral vascular disease) Heart attack or Congestive Heart Failure (coronary heart disease) Circulation disorders and possible amputation (peripheral vascular disease) When smaller blood vessels are affected, it can lead to: Kidney disease (nephropathy) Nerve damage (neuropathy) Diabetic eye disease (retinopathy) Joseph Monks: Writer, Producer, and Film Director Joseph Monks, who has diabetic retinopathy, creates and produces films for his production company Sight Unseen Pictures. He is also the first blind filmmaker to direct a feature film. Says Joe, "I'm not uncomfortable with the term 'blind.' I'm not thrilled about it, of course, but it's accurate. The lights went out for me in early 2002 as a result of diabetic retinopathy—the death of my retinas. It is what it is, so when it happened, I decided that I wasn't going to let it put an en Continue reading >>

The Emedicinehealth Doctors Ask About Diabetic Ketoacidosis:

The Emedicinehealth Doctors Ask About Diabetic Ketoacidosis:

A A A Diabetic Ketoacidosis (cont.) A person developing diabetic ketoacidosis may have one or more of these symptoms: excessive thirst or drinking lots of fluid, frequent urination, general weakness, vomiting, loss of appetite, confusion, abdominal pain, shortness of breath, a generally ill appearance, increased heart rate, low blood pressure, increased rate of breathing, and a distinctive fruity odor on the breath. If you have any form of diabetes, contact your doctor when you have very high blood sugars (generally more than 350 mg) or moderate elevations that do not respond to home treatment. At initial diagnosis your doctor should have provided you with specific rules for dosing your medication(s) and for checking your urinary ketone level whenever you become ill. If not, ask your health care practitioner to provide such "sick day rules." If you have diabetes and start vomiting, seek immediate medical attention. If you have diabetes and develop a fever, contact your health care practitioner. If you feel sick, check your urinary ketone levels with home test strips. If your urinary ketones are moderate or higher, contact your health care practitioner. People with diabetes should be taken to a hospital's emergency department if they appear significantly ill, dehydrated, confused, or very weak. Other reasons to seek immediate medical treatment include shortness of breath, chest pain, severe abdominal pain with vomiting, or high fever (above 101 F or 38.3 C). Continue Reading A A A Diabetic Ketoacidosis (cont.) The diagnosis of diabetic ketoacidosis is typically made after the health care practitioner obtains a history, performs a physical examination, and reviews the laboratory tests. Blood tests will be ordered to document the levels of sugar, potassium, sodium, and oth Continue reading >>

Diabetic Ketoacidosis Clinical Presentation

Diabetic Ketoacidosis Clinical Presentation

History Insidious increased thirst (ie, polydipsia) and urination (ie, polyuria) are the most common early symptoms of diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA). Malaise, generalized weakness, and fatigability also can present as symptoms of DKA. Nausea and vomiting usually occur and may be associated with diffuse abdominal pain, decreased appetite, and anorexia. A history of rapid weight loss is a symptom in patients who are newly diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. Patients may present with a history of failure to comply with insulin therapy or missed insulin injections due to vomiting or psychological reasons. Decreased perspiration is another possible symptom of DKA. Altered consciousness in the form of mild disorientation or confusion can occur. Although frank coma is uncommon, it may occur when the condition is neglected or if dehydration or acidosis is severe. Among the symptoms of DKA associated with possible intercurrent infection are fever, dysuria, coughing, malaise, chills, chest pain, shortness of breath, and arthralgia. Acute chest pain or palpitation may occur in association with myocardial infarction. Painless infarction is not uncommon in patients with diabetes and should always be suspected in elderly patients. A study by Crossen et al indicated that in children with type 1 diabetes, those who have had a recent emergency department visit and have undergone a long period without visiting an endocrinologist are more likely to develop DKA. The study included 5263 pediatric patients with type 1 diabetes. [15] Continue reading >>

Ketones: Clearing Up The Confusion

Ketones: Clearing Up The Confusion

Ketones, ketosis, ketoacidosis, DKA…these are words that you’ve probably heard at one point or another, and you might be wondering what they mean and if you need to worry about them at all, especially if you have diabetes. This week, we’ll explore the mysterious world of ketones, including if and how they may affect you. Ketones — what are they? Ketones are a type of acid that the body can form if there’s not enough carbohydrate to be burned for energy (yes, you do need carbs for fuel). Without enough carb, the body turns to another energy source: fat. Ketones are made in the liver from fat breakdown. This is called ketogenesis. People who don’t have diabetes can form ketones. This might occur if a person does extreme exercise, has an eating disorder, is fasting (not eating), or is following a low-carbohydrate diet. This is called ketosis and it’s a normal response to starvation. In a person who has diabetes, ketones form for the same reason (not enough carb for energy), but this often occurs because there isn’t enough insulin available to help move carb (in the form of glucose) from the bloodstream to the cells to be used for energy. Again, the body scrambles to find an alternate fuel source in the form of fat. You might be thinking that it’s a good thing to burn fat for fuel. However, for someone who has diabetes, ketosis can quickly become dangerous if it occurs due to a continued lack of insulin (the presence of ketones along with “normal” blood sugar levels is not necessarily a cause for concern). In the absence of insulin (which can occur if someone doesn’t take their insulin or perhaps uses an insulin pump and the pump has a malfunction, for example), fat cells continue to release fat into the circulation; the liver then continues to churn Continue reading >>

The Scary Experience Of Diabetic Ketoacidosis

The Scary Experience Of Diabetic Ketoacidosis

Today, we’re excited to share with you another guest blog from Katie Janowiak, who works for the Medtronic Foundation, our company’s philanthropic arm. When she first told me her story about food poisoning and Diabetic Ketoacidosis (DKA), I knew others could benefit from hearing it as well. Thanks Katie for your openness and allowing us to share your scary story so that the LOOP community can learn from it. Throughout this past year, I’ve had the honor of sharing with you, the amazing LOOP community, my personal journey and the often humorous sequence of events that is my life with T1. Humor is, after all, the best (and cheapest) therapy. Allow me to pause today to share with you the down and dirty of what it feels like to have something that is not the slightest bit humorous: diabetic ketoacidosis.You are hot. You are freezing. You are confused. You are blacked out but coherent. You go to talk but words fail you. Time flies and goes in slow motion simultaneously. You will likely smell and look like death. In my instance, this was brought on by the combination of excessive vomiting and dehydration caused by food poisoning and the diabetic ketoacidosis that followed after my body had gone through so much. In hindsight, I was lucky, my husband knew that I had food poisoning because I began vomiting after our meal. But I had never prepped him on diabetic ketoacidosis and the symptoms (because DKA was for those other diabetics.) Upon finding me in our living room with a bowl of blood and bile by my side (no, I am not exaggerating), he got me into the car and took me to emergency care. It was 5:30 p.m. – and I thought it was 11:00 a.m. The series of events that led up to my stay in the ICU began innocently enough. It was a warm summer night and my husband and I walke Continue reading >>

Department Of Emergency Medicine

Department Of Emergency Medicine

Lehigh Valley Health Network LVHN Scholarly Works Department of Emergency Medicine Continued Confusion After Resolution of Diabetic Ketoacidosis Ryan Rogers DO Lehigh Valley Health Network, [email protected] Gretchen A. Perilli MD Lehigh Valley Health Network, [email protected] Philip Dunn DO Lehigh Valley Health Network, [email protected] Follow this and additional works at: Part of the Emergency Medicine Commons, and the Endocrinology, Diabetes, and Metabolism Commons This Poster is brought to you for free and open access by LVHN Scholarly Works. It has been accepted for inclusion in LVHN Scholarly Works by an authorized administrator. For more information, please contact [email protected]rg. Published In/Presented At Rogers, R., Perilli, G., Dunn, P. (2015, April 30). Continued Confusion After Resolution of Diabetic Ketoacidosis. Poster presented at: POMA Annual Clinical Assembly, King of Prussia, PA. Lehigh Valley Health Network, Allentown, Pennsylvania Continued Confusion After Resolution of Diabetic Ketoacidosis Ryan Rogers, DO, Gretchen Perilli, MD, and Philip Dunn, DO Introduction Case Presentation Diabetic Ketoacidosis (DKA) is a complication of an uncontrolled type I diabetic. After resolution of the ketosis, the polyuria, polydipsia, nausea and encephalopathy usually subside. DKA poses risks for developing several cerebral complications including cerebral edema, seizure activity and CVA but intracranial hemorrhages (ICH) have been reported in rare case among children. Discussion: © 2015 Lehigh Valley Health Network References: 1. Levin, Daniel L., MD. “Cerebral Edema in Diabetic Ketoacidosis.†Pediatric Critical Care Medicine 9.3 (2008): 320-26 2. Hatun, Sukru, Filiz Cizmecioglu, and Demet Toprak. “Cerebral Complication Continue reading >>

How Does Ketoacidosis Affect The Human Brain?

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 and drinking to eliminate the solute load of glucose, which also results in increased urination (polyuria and polydipsia). Thus, the combination of increased serum acidity, weight loss, polyuria, and polydipsia may lead to extreme dehydration, coma, or brain damage. Without a doubt, the most severe acute complication of DKA is cerebral edema. Many cases of new onset type 1 diabetes present DKA (15-70 percent depending on age and geographic region, according to multiple studies), hence the importance of an early diagnosis of diabetes in order to avoid potential consequences. Much research is be Continue reading >>

Ketosis Vs. Ketoacidosis: What You Should Know

Ketosis Vs. Ketoacidosis: What You Should Know

Despite the similarity in name, ketosis and ketoacidosis are two different things. Ketoacidosis refers to diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) and is a complication of type 1 diabetes mellitus. It’s a life-threatening condition resulting from dangerously high levels of ketones and blood sugar. This combination makes your blood too acidic, which can change the normal functioning of internal organs like your liver and kidneys. It’s critical that you get prompt treatment. DKA can occur very quickly. It may develop in less than 24 hours. It mostly occurs in people with type 1 diabetes whose bodies do not produce any insulin. Several things can lead to DKA, including illness, improper diet, or not taking an adequate dose of insulin. DKA can also occur in individuals with type 2 diabetes who have little or no insulin production. Ketosis is the presence of ketones. It’s not harmful. You can be in ketosis if you’re on a low-carbohydrate diet or fasting, or if you’ve consumed too much alcohol. If you have ketosis, you have a higher than usual level of ketones in your blood or urine, but not high enough to cause acidosis. Ketones are a chemical your body produces when it burns stored fat. Some people choose a low-carb diet to help with weight loss. While there is some controversy over their safety, low-carb diets are generally fine. Talk to your doctor before beginning any extreme diet plan. DKA is the leading cause of death in people under 24 years old who have diabetes. The overall death rate for ketoacidosis is 2 to 5 percent. People under the age of 30 make up 36 percent of DKA cases. Twenty-seven percent of people with DKA are between the ages of 30 and 50, 23 percent are between the ages of 51 and 70, and 14 percent are over the age of 70. Ketosis may cause bad breath. Ket Continue reading >>

Metabolic Acidosis

Metabolic Acidosis

Metabolic acidosis occurs when the body produces too much acid. It can also occur when the kidneys are not removing enough acid from the body. There are several types of metabolic acidosis. Diabetic acidosis develops when acidic substances, known as ketone bodies, build up in the body. This most often occurs with uncontrolled type 1 diabetes. It is also called diabetic ketoacidosis and DKA. Hyperchloremic acidosis results from excessive loss of sodium bicarbonate from the body. This can occur with severe diarrhea. Lactic acidosis results from a buildup of lactic acid. It can be caused by: Alcohol Cancer Exercising intensely Liver failure Medicines, such as salicylates Other causes of metabolic acidosis include: Kidney disease (distal renal tubular acidosis and proximal renal tubular acidosis) Poisoning by aspirin, ethylene glycol (found in antifreeze), or methanol Continue reading >>

Acute Confusion In A Diabetic Patient

Acute Confusion In A Diabetic Patient

OVERVIEW The causes of confusion or altered LOC in a middle aged diabetic male are numerous. Most causes could be delineated by a thorough history, examination and a few simple investigations. IMPORTANT CAUSES Hypoglycaemia – history of hypo’s, episode in relation to taking medications, BSL. Diabetic ketoacidosis – history of DKA, polyuria, polydipsia, thrist, compliance with medications, type I or II diabetes, ABG, BSL, dehydration on examination. Hyper-osmotic hyperosmolar syndrome (HHS) – unwell with concomitant infection, severe dehydration, severe hyperglycaemia, hyperosmolality (plasma). Hyperglycaemia – history of control, compliance, BSL. Lactic acidosis – type II diabetics on metformin (biguanides) -> sepsis or renal failure. Cerebrovascular accident – TIA or stroke – DM is a risk factor for vascular disease, history of focal neurological symptoms, brainstem or cortical infarct/bleeding. Sepsis with encephalopathy – the diabetic patient is at risk of systemic infections from a number of sources. Continue reading >>

Type 2 Diabetes: 4 Signs Of Trouble

Type 2 Diabetes: 4 Signs Of Trouble

If your glucose levels get out of control, it can lead to serious diabetes problems. Knowing the signs of these diabetes conditions can help you take quick action to resolve them. Diabetes complications can occur if you don't regulate your blood sugar (glucose) levels properly. Blood sugar is produced in your liver and muscles, and most of the food you eat is converted into blood sugar. This is your body's source of energy, but when your blood sugar gets too high, diabetes is the result. Your pancreas produces the hormone insulin, which then carries blood sugar into your cells, where it’s stored and used for energy. When you develop insulin resistance, high levels of sugar build up in your blood instead of your cells and you start to experience signs and symptoms of diabetes. You may notice fatigue, hunger, increased thirst, blurred vision, infections that are slow to heal, pain and numbness in your feet or hands, and increased urination. For awhile, your pancreas will work to keep up with your body’s sugar demand by producing more insulin, but eventually it loses the ability to compensate and serious diabetes complications — including blindness, kidney failure, loss of circulation in your lower extremities, and heart disease — can develop. For most people with diabetes, the target blood sugar level is 70 to 130 mg/dL, but your doctor will work with you to pinpoint your individual target range. Your doctor can also help you learn what to eat and how to keep your blood sugar within a healthy range. Joel Zonszein, MD, director of clinical diabetes at Montefiore Medical Center in New York City, says it’s very important to work with and see your doctor regularly and to consult a diabetes educator. If your diabetes is well-controlled and you're monitoring your bloo Continue reading >>

When There Are Acute Changes In Mental Status In Patients With Diabetes

When There Are Acute Changes In Mental Status In Patients With Diabetes

Author(s): Adam Lang, BS, and Kathleen Satterfield, DPM, FACFAOM As podiatric physicians in 2010, we are better trained than ever to manage patients’ problems. Even more importantly, we are well versed in making appropriate, well-timed referrals when needed. In the following case study, that particular acumen was critically important. A 78-year-old male with type 2 diabetes underwent resection of the first metatarsophalangeal base and debridement of an underlying ulcer, which has at times been infected. The plan was to inspect the bone for osteomyelitis, place the patient on oral antibiotics and not primarily close the plantar lesion, but pack it open instead. Resection of the phalangeal base would ease the deforming hallux interphalangeus. Examination revealed a hallux limitus and the physician determined that at the patient’s age and activity level, a Keller arthroplasty would serve him well, preventing further breakdown and possible osteomyelitis. The plantar lesion did not undergo primary closure but physicians packed it instead. The hospital discharged the patient within a week after bone cultures and histology showed no evidence of osteomyelitis. He received a prescription for oral antibiotics and received instruction to keep a clinic appointment in 48 hours. However, he was a no-show for his appointment. Phone calls to his home, all of which were documented, went unanswered over a period of two weeks. About a month after his discharge from the hospital, the patient went to the emergency department of the hospital accompanied by his wife. His extremity was in the same dressing he received upon preparation for discharge although now it was soiled and loose. His wife reported that they had never filled the prescription for antibiotics because they “did not und Continue reading >>

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