Diabetic Coma

What is a Diabetic Coma?

A diabetic coma is the result of extremely high blood sugar levels. This usually means  600 mg/dL or higher. It can cause you to become dehydrated and is common among those with type 2 diabetes when it is not controlled.

Elderly people, disabled people, and those that are chronically ill are more likely to suffer from a diabetic coma. It sometimes happens when people are unable to get enough water to drink or just don’t realize that they are thirsty. A diabetic coma can be fatal so it is a very serious issue that requires particular attention.

What are the Symptoms of Diabetic Coma?

People with diabetes need to make sure their blood sugar levels are under control and at the correct levels. If you are going to the bathroom a lot and you find that you are very thirsty and you have diabetes, you should schedule an appointment with your doctor to make sure that your blood sugar level is under control.

Symptoms include

If your body is losing water and it continues for a period of time you may begin to experience frequent drowsiness and weakness. You may get headaches and fevers. Some experience and altered medical state and an inability to speak properly. Visual problems and hallucinations are also signs of a potential diabetic coma. Some even experience paralysis.

How is a Diabetic Coma Treated?

Doctors treat diabetic coma very seriously as it can potentially be fatal so if they suspect that this is the case and see the symptoms they will likely send you to the hospital. At the hospital, you will get an IV to help you replace important electrolytes like potassium. You may also get an insulin shot or other medications to get your blood sugar under control. Replacing lost fluids is essential.

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Last Reviewed:
October 05, 2016
Last Updated:
September 06, 2017