It has been associated with high levels of insulin or insulin resistance. It is usually short-lived and may be experienced by diabetics who have not replaced their fluids.
What is ketosis?
Ketosis is the state at which fat becomes the main source of energy for your body, rather than carbohydrates. If you are healthy, your body naturally turns to fat during times of starvation so that it may preserve glucose. Ketone bodies are created when fats are broken down in this way and their high concentrations in the blood can create a state of ketoacidosis.
What is diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA)?
Patients with type I diabetes who do not follow their insulin therapy regimes and those with either type II diabetes or late-onset type I may experience DKA as a result of missed or insufficient insulin injections. This is because sugars cannot enter cells without insulin and therefore build up in the blood. The absence of insulin causes fat to be broken down, which leads to an excess of ketone bodies that can cause DKA.
What causes diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA)?
Insufficient insulin: If a patient does not inject enough insulin, the cells cannot absorb glucose and this encourages ketone production.
If a patient does not inject enough insulin, the cells cannot absorb glucose and this encourages ketone production. Missed injection: If a patient misses an injection of insulin, blood sugar levels increase as they are unable to enter cells. This leads to an excess fat breakdown which releases more ketone bodies into the blood.
If a patient misses an injection of insulin, blood sugar levels increase as they are unable to enter cells. This leads to an excess fat breakdown which releases more ketone bodies into the blood. Medication interaction: Certain medications can lower insulin production and/or cause muscle weakness which may lead to missed or insufficient insulin injections.
How common is diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA)?
DKA is more common for individuals with type I diabetes who rely on insulin treatment, but it can also occur in those with type II diabetes. It can happen at any age and to anyone with diabetes.
How is diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) diagnosed?
A diagnosis of DKA will usually be made on the basis of the symptoms, although the presence of high blood glucose and ketones may indicate that it has occurred. Blood tests can also provide supportive evidence for a diagnosis of DKA.
Symptoms of DKA are stomach pains, fast breathing, fatigue, nausea, vomiting, confusion, and drowsiness.
The treatment for diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) includes measures such as:
-rehydrating the patient with intravenous fluids
-increasing their intake of calories by adding high-calorie liquids to their diet
-giving them more insulin to control their blood sugar levels.
If this is not effective, the patient may need to be admitted to the hospital for more intensive treatment. Symptoms of diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) can become life-threatening and so it must always be treated as a medical emergency. If you experience symptoms such as difficulty breathing, vomiting, or seizures, seek immediate medical attention.