Why should near-normal blood glucose levels be maintained in medical and surgical patients with type 1 diabetes mellitus (DM)?

Updated: Sep 13, 2019
  • Author: Romesh Khardori, MD, PhD, FACP; Chief Editor: George T Griffing, MD  more...
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Answer

Much less is known about optimal blood glucose levels in hospitalized patients with preexisting diabetes whose hyperglycemia reflects both their diabetes and a stress response to illness. Nonetheless, it is clear that management of hospitalized patients with preexisting diabetes requires modification of treatment regimens to compensate for both the decreased caloric intake and the increased physiologic stress. Near-normal blood glucose levels should be maintained in medical and surgical patients with diabetes, for the following reasons:

  • To prevent the development of ketosis

  • To prevent electrolyte abnormalities and volume depletion secondary to osmotic diuresis

  • To prevent the impairment of leukocyte function that occurs when blood glucose levels are elevated

  • To prevent the impairment of wound healing that occurs when glucose levels are elevated


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