Navigation Links
Low Blood Sugar in Hospital Tied to Higher Death Risk for Diabetics
Date:6/29/2009

Hypoglycemia likely a sign of additional illness, suggest experts,,

MONDAY, June 29 (HealthDay News) -- Being a diabetic and having just one episode of low blood sugar during a hospital stay was associated with a significantly increased risk of dying, both in the hospital and up to a year later, new research shows.

In a study that included almost 2,600 people with diabetes who were hospitalized for a variety of ailments, researchers found that low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) occurred in nearly 8 percent of the patients, and that each additional day with a hypoglycemic episode was associated with an 85 percent increase in the risk of death while hospitalized. The study also found a 66 percent increased mortality risk for one year following discharge in patients who'd had hypoglycemia.

"We think hypoglycemia likely was a marker for severity of illness," explained study author Dr. Alexander Turchin, an assistant professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School and an associate physician at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston. "A patient gets admitted to the hospital, becomes more ill and stops eating. If they're using the same anti-diabetes regimen they do at home, they'll develop hypoglycemia."

Results of the study were published in the July issue of Diabetes Care.

Because high blood sugar levels are associated with numerous adverse health outcomes, researchers began investigating if lowering high blood sugar levels in critically ill patients would improve outcomes. An initial study found positive results for aggressively lowering blood sugar. However, since that time several studies have questioned this practice because they found an increased risk of mortality, possibly due to lowering blood sugar too much.

Most of the research was done in patients in intensive care, but the current study focuses on people hospitalized in the general wards for numerous different reasons -- from elective surgeries to infectious diseases.

Turchin and his colleagues analyzed data from 4,368 non-critical hospital admissions. Of these, 2,582 were people with diabetes -- both type 1 and type 2. About one-third of the people with diabetes received treatment with insulin.

Hypoglycemia was defined as a blood sugar reading of less than 50 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dl). The researchers found that 7.7 percent of the hospitalized people with diabetes had at least one episode of low blood sugar.

The researchers controlled the data for a number of factors, including the presence of other illnesses, and predicted what a normal length of stay for that condition should be.

"Even after including all of that, low blood sugar still gave us additional information about the prediction of mortality that we're not capturing with all the other metrics," said Turchin.

The risk of inpatient death jumped 85.3 percent for each additional day with hypoglycemia, the team found. Up to one year later, the risk of death was still increased by 65.8 percent for each additional day someone experienced hypoglycemia. The researchers also found that the length of a hospital stay increased by 2.5 days for each day there was at least one low blood sugar reading.

"If patients develop low blood sugar, they should be closely monitored for clinical deterioration," said Turchin. "Keeping blood sugar high doesn't have a benefit, but being too aggressive in lowering it may not be such as a good idea either."

Dr. Joel Zonszein, director of the clinical diabetes center at Montefiore Medical Center in New York City, said that his sense is that the higher risk of mortality in people with hypoglycemia is a result of underlying disease, rather than from aggressive treatment.

"There's no question that hypoglycemia is associated with a high mortality rate, but it's an association; there's no direct evidence of causality," he said.

Turchin said the researchers weren't able to do a comprehensive analysis to determine if a hypoglycemic episode that occurred for an obvious reason -- such as a late meal in someone who's been given insulin -- had the same increased risk that a spontaneously occurring low blood sugar episode did.

No matter what the cause, however, Turchin recommended that these patients be "more closely monitored to prevent low blood sugar, which can only exacerbate their problems."

More information

To learn more about hypoglycemia, visit the U.S. National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases.



SOURCES: Alexander Turchin, M.D., assistant professor, medicine, Harvard Medical School, and associate physician, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Boston; Joel Zonszein, M.D., director, clinical diabetes center, Montefiore Medical Center, New York City; July 2009 Diabetes Care


'/>"/>
Copyright©2009 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Specific antagonism lowers blood pressure
2. Restricting Blood Flow May Help Heart Bypass Patients
3. FDA Updates Prescription Guidelines for Blood Thinner
4. Doctors Often Miss High Blood Pressure in Kids
5. Back to School Means Return of School Blood Drives
6. Blood-flow detector software show promise in preventing brain damage
7. FDA Approves New Roche West Nile Virus Blood Screening Test
8. Australian-led international study shows blood pressure drugs cut death rate in type 2 diabetes
9. Laser blasts viruses in blood
10. Study Demonstrates Marteks Algal DHA Oil Improves Blood Triglyceride Lipid Levels
11. LifeMasters Provides Tips for Maintaining a Healthy Blood Cholesterol Level
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Low Blood Sugar in Hospital Tied to Higher Death Risk for Diabetics
(Date:6/26/2016)... ... 2016 , ... On June 10-11, 2016, A Forever Recovery, a holistic treatment ... Longest Breakfast Table in Battle Creek, MI, where the rehabilitation facility is located. This ... of the world’s leading providers of cereal and other breakfast foods. Its residents often ...
(Date:6/26/2016)... Clarkston, Michigan (PRWEB) , ... June 26, 2016 ... ... respect to fertility once they have been diagnosed with endometriosis. These women need ... but they also require a comprehensive approach that can help for preservation of ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... "With 30 hand-drawn hand gesture ... said Christina Austin - CEO of Pixel Film Studios. , ProHand Cartoon’s package ... Final Cut Pro X . Simply select a ProHand generator and drag it ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... On Friday, June 10, Van Mitchell, ... at Work award to iHire in recognition of their exemplary accomplishments in worksite health ... annual Maryland Workplace Health & Wellness Symposium at the BWI Marriott in Linthicum Heights. ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... June 19, 2016 is World Sickle Cell Observance ... and the benefits of holistic treatments, Serenity Recovery Center of Marne, Michigan, ... Disease. , Sickle Cell Disease (SCD) is a disorder of the red blood cells, ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/26/2016)... VEGAS , June 26, 2016 ... to value-based care operating models within the health care ... enable greater financial efficiency , Deloitte offers a ... the key business issues impacting efficient cost optimization: labor ... , These services facilitate better outcomes and better ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... 24, 2016 ... the addition of the " Global Markets for ... This report focuses on ... updated review, including its applications in various applications. The ... which includes three main industries: pharmaceutical and biotechnology, food ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... , June 24, 2016 Research ... World Market for Companion Diagnostic Tests" report to their ... Market for Companion Diagnostics The World Market ... and personalized medicine diagnostics. Market analysis in the report includes ... Test Market (In Vitro Diagnostic Kits) by Region (N. America, ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: