diabetic ketoacidosis

The diabetic ketoacidosis - A severe, acute complication of Type 1 diabetes mellitus, a condition in which the pancreas produces too little insulin. If levels of insulin are too low, the liver generates more glucose, but the tissues are unable to take up the glucose properly and have to break down fats to obtain energy, causing the production of acidic chemicals called ketone bodies.

Diabetic ketoacidosis may be the first sign that a person has insulindependent diabetes, or it may develop in a person known to have the condition who has taken insufficient insulin.

The features of diabetic ketoacidosis include nausea; vomiting; deep, rapid breathing; breath that smells of acetone (like nail polish remover); and confusion. The condition can progress to severe dehydration and coma.

Treatment of diabetic ketoacidosis involves giving insulin to correct the deficiency and fluids containing salts to relieve dehydration.


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