Tag Archives: Diabetes

Life is not over because you have diabetes. Make the most of what you have, be grateful.~ Dale Evans

Type 1 diabetics should be aware of DKA (diabetic ketoacidosis)

All those who have type 1 diabetes should know about a serious complication which can happen in type 1 diabetes, called DKA (diabetic ketoacidosis).

In this condition blood glucose levels shoots up, out of proportion, along with various other physical signs and symptoms. If not treated in time it can lead to loss of life. Hence knowing about DKA is wise and can be protective.

What are the causes?

Generally DKA happens when type 1 diabetic’s body goes through an insult like infection, surgery, heart attack, stroke, pregnancy, cocaine abuse, forgetting regular insulin doses frequently etc.

During illnesses like in case of infection, appetite goes down and therefore the affected individual decreases the dose of insulin he use to take regularly. Due to lack of proper insulin doses the fat in the body break down and make ketone bodies. The latter produces acidic environment in the body, hence it’s termed ketoacidosis (acidosis due to ketone bodies).

How does DKA presents?
It presents with wide range of symptoms, but some of the commons are- pain in abdomen, fast breathing, fruity smell from the mouth (due to ketone bodies), nausea (i.e. vomiting like sensation), vomiting, increased thirst, polyuria (passing large volume of urine) etc.

How to treat DKA?
DKA is a medical emergency. It needs proper medical attention at a well equipped health care center under trained medical staff.

Since DKA patients suffer from huge fluid loss, fluids through venous route is given. Besides fluids, insulin and potassium are also supplemented as required. Regular monitoring of various parameters are done, like blood sugar, body’s acidic situation, blood pressure etc. If treatment is instituted in time by expert DKA management team, the results can be good.

What can a type 1 diabetes patient do to avoid DKA?

Taking regular insulin doses as instructed by their treating doctor.

Consult the doctor in case of any illness even if it is a mild flu.

Keep telephone numbers of emergency services handy.

Ask your doctor, if any particular instruction they would like to give you in regard to your health.

RELATED: Type 1 diabetes


Why insulin requirement decreases in diabetes patients with long term kidney disease?

Those people who are suffering from diabetes and taking insulin probably become happy when their doctor decreases their dose of insulin or stops insulin.

But if a person is suffering from chronic kidney disease along with diabetes, decrease in insulin doses may not be something to be happy.

When chronic kidney disease deteriorates i.e. progresses to advanced stages, the requirement of insulin falls in diabetics.

Now the question is:

Why insulin requirement falls in advanced stages of chronic kidney disease?


  • In advanced stages of chronic renal failure, the kidneys excretion capacity of insulin molecules decrease, therefore more of the insulin remains in blood. Unless the insulin gets excreted normally the further requirement of insulin is less. In such scenario your doctor might decrease your insulin doses.

Ask you doctor today to be sure why your insulin dose was decreased.

Diabetes and urine microalbumin

Urine microalbumin is a test in which we look for microalbumin levels in urine. This test is commonly recommended for diabetic patients. Usual recommendations are to check its level every year.

Generally microalbumin to creatinine ratio less than 30 is considered normal and levels between 30 and 300 is considered as the range of microalbuminuria.

Microalbuminuria can proceed to kidney failure, so it should not be ignored. Consulting a doctor in this regard is probably the most wise thing to do.

Microalbumin levels can be raised in diseases like diabetes type one, diabetes type two, hypertension etc.

Some might ask if false rise of microalbumin level is possible (which are not directly indicating a kidney problem). Yes, such can happen, if someone exercised severely before going for the urine microalbumin test.

Other possible causes of falsely raised microalbumin are severe high blood pressure, some heart conditions, certain drugs that an individual might be taking, blood in urine, fever or infections. If such a condition preceded before a test an abnormal micoalbumin test result is possible, which warrants repeat testing.

However, single test showing microalbuminuria is generally not considered sufficient and repeat testing after 2 to 3 months are looked for.

In cases of real microalbuminuria, in diabetics, drugs belonging to the group called angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors or angiotensin receptor blockers are used. Which are commonly claimed as helpful, medical literature too votes for that. Besides that moderate bar on protein ingestion is also wise.

The issue needs guidance of a physician.