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Wilderness: Diabetic Reaction (cont.)


What is the treatment for diabetic reaction?

Patient Comments

Low Blood Sugar Treatment

  • Provide the hypoglycemic person with low blood sugar with juice, candy, or any other sweet substance. If the person responds to treatment, further food will be required.
  • Wilderness trips should be carefully planned. Blood sugar monitors and adequate medication supplies (including refrigeration for insulin) should always be available.

NOTE: When in doubt, any person with diabetes who appears to be having a reaction should be treated as if he or she has low blood sugar until a blood sugar can be measured.

High Blood Sugar Treatment

  • Encourage clear liquids with low or no sugar content.
  • Administer IV fluids as soon as possible vomiting for the presence of ketoacidosis in the blood or urine. The person with high blood sugar may need extra insulin doses in a monitored medical setting.

When should I seek medical care for a diabetic reaction?

Low Blood Sugar

  • Seek medical treatment if the person with low blood sugar fails to respond quickly (within 15 minutes).
  • Ensure appropriate food intake to prevent further attacks.

High Blood Sugar

  • Consult your health-care professional about extra doses of insulin.
  • Seek medical treatment as soon as possible for loss of consciousness, presence of ketoacids in blood, urine, or vomiting.

Medically reviewed by John A. Seibel, MD; Board Certified Internal Medicine with a subspecialty in Endocrinology & Metabolism


MedscapeR. Hypoglycemia.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 6/23/2016

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