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Hyperglycemia and diabetes: What to watch out forFrom MayoClinic.com
Special to CNN.com
You have diabetes. You're taking your medication and checking your blood sugar. But your mouth feels dry and you've been thirsty all day. When you check your blood sugar you discover it's a lot higher than your target range. This is known as hyperglycemia. It's serious — but you can take immediate steps to treat it.Why blood sugar rises
Your diabetes treatment plan is designed to help you avoid hyperglycemia. But everyone has occasional episodes of high blood sugar. The most common culprits include:
Paying attention to the early signs and symptoms of hyperglycemia can help you treat the condition promptly. Watch for:
Long periods of hyperglycemia can damage your nerves, blood vessels and various organs. Left untreated, high blood sugar may turn into diabetic ketoacidosis or diabetic hyperosmolar syndrome — both life-threatening conditions.What to do
If you have any signs or symptoms of hyperglycemia — even if they're subtle — check your blood sugar. If your blood sugar is higher than normal, use a home testing kit to check your urine for ketones. If the urine test is positive, your body may have started making the changes that can lead to diabetic ketoacidosis. You'll need your doctor's help to safely lower your blood sugar.
If there are no ketones in your urine, you may be able to treat hyperglycemia on your own.
Responding to changes in blood sugar can help you prevent long-term complications of diabetes. Work with your doctor to make sure your diabetes treatment plan is meeting your needs.
March 24, 2006