Hypoglycemia Linked to Higher Risk of Death in ICU Patients

Hypoglycemia Linked to Higher Risk of Death in ICU Patients

A latest US study results have suggested that critically ill patients with mild to moderate hypoglycaemia are at almost twice as likely to die as critically ill patients with normal blood sugar.

The study is revealed to include 4,946 critically ill patients at six medical centers in Australia, Japan and New Zealand. Among the patients included, 1,109 experienced hypoglycemia while the remainder served as a non-hypoglycemic control group.

"Even after the adjustment for insulin therapy or timing of hypoglycemic episode, the more severe the hypoglycemia, the greater the risk of death", study co-investigator Dr. Rinaldo Bellomo, of Austin Health in Melbourne, posted in a news release.

The study revealed that patients suffering with hypoglycemia possessed a death rate of 36.6 percent, compared with 19.7 percent for those without hypoglycemia.

The researchers online in the journal Mayo Clinic Proceedings posted that regular monitoring of glucose levels in ICU patients might help prevent hypoglycaemia or assist diagnose it earlier.

"Our results suggest that any tolerance of mild to moderate hypoglycemia by intensive care clinicians may be undesirable. In this regard, newer technologies such as continuous glucose monitoring in the ICU setting might help avoid hypoglycemia or identify it earlier", Bellomo revealed.

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