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Diabetic Ketoacidosis (DKA)

 

DKA is a condition of chemical imbalance in the body due to lack or absence of insulin causing inability to convert glucose into energy leading to breakdown of fat and thereby release of organic acids and ketones.

Causes

  • Infection
  • Missed insulin
  • Undiagnosed or recently diagnosed diabetes
  • Heart attack
  • Stroke
  • Injury
  • Stress
  • Cocaine
  • Surgery

Symptoms

  • Fatigue
  • Excessive thirst and fluid intake
  • Excessive urination
  • Severe dehydration
  • Fruity or sweet smelling breath
  • Breathing difficulty
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Abdominal  discomfort
  • Weight loss
  • Confusion
  • Blurred vision
  • Drowsiness

Treatment

  • Intravenous fluids
  • Rehydration and correction of electrolyte imbalance
  • Insulin administration

Prevention

  • Monitoring and controlling diabetes
  • Avoiding exercising when blood sugar is high
  • Regularly taking diabetes medication or insulin
  • Monitoring ketone levels during periods of stress, infection or injury