Wed 17 Sep 2014 02:25:46 AM CDT : This site is about to be upgraded to a new software release. If you are in the process of entering information, please complete it in the next few minutes and then log off, to ensure that you are not interrupted. If you were about to start entering details, please wait until this message is removed. You may continue to browse content on the site during the upgrade if you wish. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.

Ask the Diabetes Educator Archive

5/3/04

Q:
What is the (average) blood sugar count for a person to go into a diabetic coma?

A:
I'm not sure if "average" is the right word, as I have seen people in diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) under 500 and over 800. On the flip side, others with blood sugars over 1000 are not in DKA; this is a condition abbreviated HHNK and generally is seen more in the elderly, particularly when dehydrated. 500-600 may be a more common range if a poll were taken. Those who have adapted to daily high blood sugars over the years may not experience a dramatic shift at 500. It is advised for all insulin-dependent, insulin-requiring people with diabetes to check for ketones when their blood sugars start elevating. This is particularly true when sick or infectious. DKA usually occurs for those who are not managing their diabetes. Correction involves saline/insulin/electrolytes drip. Consistent blood glucose monitoring is a good step towards prevention.



Get Our Newsletter

Accountability