Diabetic Ketoacidosis is a serious complication of Diabetes.
It can also be referred to as DKA.
This is a serious and can be a life threatening aspect of diabetes.
Prior to insulin treatment of diabetes, DKA caused a large number of deaths.
When can it be seen?
- It is often seen in a patient who is unaware of their illness of diabetes.
- They often require an emergency visit and present with DKA symptoms
- May also be seen in someone who fails to take their prescribed insulin
- Can be seen with certain illnesses in a diabetic such as: infection, pneumonia
- High blood sugar
- Large amount of ketone bodies
Often a minimal amount of insulin is present in the blood stream
- Occurs in low insulin situations
- Liver believes it is starving
- Liver will then produce ketone bodies for fuel
- Increase urination
- Inability to drink enough water – always thirsty
- Fruity smell to breath
- Muscle pain
- Blood pH drops
- Muscle wasting
- Weight loss
Late stage symptoms:
- Extreme confusion
- Abdominal pain
- Vomiting (can occur in early stages as well)
- Difficulty or irregular breathing (may be very deep)
- Replacement of electrolytes
- Hospital stay
- Ventilation may be necessary
- Intubation may be necessary