High Blood Sugar (Hyperglycemia) (cont.)
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High Blood Sugar Symptoms
A high blood sugar level itself is a symptom of diabetes. However, an individual experiencing hyperglycemia may have no symptoms at all.
Common symptoms can include:
If hyperglycemia persists for several hours and leads to dehydration, other symptoms may develop, such as:
Left untreated, hyperglycemia can lead to a condition called ketoacidosis, also known as diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) or diabetic coma. This occurs because the body has insufficient insulin to process glucose into fuel, so the body breaks down fats to use for energy. When the body breaks down fat, ketones are produced as by-products. Some ketones are eliminated via the urine, but not all. Until the patient is rehydrated, and adequate insulin action is restored, ketones remain in the blood. Ketones in the blood cause nausea, headache, fatigue, or vomiting.
Ketoacidosis is life-threatening and demands immediate treatment.
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