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Podcast # 456 Hypoglycemia: Not feeling so sweet

Emergency Medical Minute

Release Date: 04/12/2019

Author: Jared Scott, MD

Educational Pearls:

 

  • Beta-blockers can mask the effects of hypoglycemia
  • Prolonged/refractory hypoglycemia should raise a suspicion for sulfonylurea (or other oral hypoglycemic) overdose
  • Interventions to reverse hypoglycemia include feeding the patient, IV dextrose, glucagon
  • Octreotide can be used as an antidote with sulfonylurea ingestion 

Editor’s note: Here is an interesting case report on using steroids for severe hypogylcemia caused by insulin overdose. Perhaps another treatment modality to keep in your back pocket?

References

Alsahli M, Gerich JE. Hypoglycemia. Endocrinol Metab Clin North Am. 2013 Dec;42(4):657-76. doi: 10.1016/j.ecl.2013.07.002. Review. PubMed PMID: 24286945.

Moore C, Woollard M. Dextrose 10% or 50% in the treatment of hypoglycaemia out of hospital? A randomised controlled trial.Emerg Med J. 2005 Jul;22(7):512-5. PubMed PMID: 15983093; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC1726850.

Fasano CJ, O'Malley G, Dominici P, Aguilera E, Latta DR. Comparison of octreotide and standard therapy versus standard therapy alone for the treatment of sulfonylurea-induced hypoglycemia. Ann Emerg Med. 2008 Apr;51(4):400-6. Epub 2007 Aug 30. PubMed PMID: 17764782.

Summarized by Will Dewispelaere, MS3 | Edited by Erik Verzemnieks, MD