Hyperglycemia: High Blood Sugar

Hyperglycemia: High Blood SugarHyperglycemia is the flip side of hypoglycemia. It occurs when the blood sugar is too high, and usually develops much more slowly. Again, thanks to UCSD for the information below on treating hyperglycemia.

How does hyperglycemia kill you?

High levels of sugar in your blood make it corrosive, turning the life-sustaining soup into a killing battery acid circulating throughout your body. Sustained high blood sugar levels will destroy your kidneys, cause blindness, and kindle nerve damage.

Normal Glucose: 70 -130.

High blood sugar: 250-350

Symptoms: extreme thirst; frequent urination; fatigue; vision changes; dry skin and mouth.

Causes: Too much food; wrong kinds of food; illness, injury or infection; emotional stress; too little diabetes medication; previously undiagnosed diabetes.

Treatment: Follow meal plan; take medication properly; notify doctor to treat underlying illness or infection or adjust amount of medication. Administrator’s note: I have also dropped low level hyperglycemia (230 minus) with exercise, such as a 25 minute walk on a treadmill. Do this only, of course, with a physician’s recommendation, and testing glucose before and after exercise. We were also taught in diabetes class (Source: Kaiser Permanente) that drinking water was also helpful to flush out excess blood sugar. I find exercise more effective.


Very high blood sugar: (over 350)

Symptoms: Same as for high blood glucose and possibly: nausea; stomach cramps; dry mouth, dehydration; fruity breath; ketones in urine; weight loss; deep and rapid breathing; drowsiness; unconsciousness.

Causes: Same as for high glucose.

Treatment: Test urine for ketones (use Ketostix, available at any pharmacy); notify your doctor, who can tell you how to treat yourself or where to find treatment QUICKLY.

Again, this emergency material is not intended to diagnose a condition, but is intended to assist you in an emergency situation. Consult a physician for further information.

Source: The UCSD Healthy Diet for Diabetes, by Susan Algert, M.S., R.D.; Barbara Grasse, R.D., C.D.E.; Annie Durning, M.S., R.D.