Ketoacidosis and Diabetes

Diabetic ketoacidosis also referred to as DKA is most prevalent for those who have type 1 diabetes but in some cases type 2 diabetes. When there is not enough insulin to assist blood glucose to enter the cells for energy, your body will then break down fat and release ketones. High levels of ketones, band blood acid, will cause serious complications in those afflicted with type 1 diabetes. This complication can cause a diabetic coma or death.

Causes of Ketoacidosis regarding Diabetes

The common causes of ketoacidosis are illness or improper insulin therapy. An illness can cause the release of some hormones that can work against insulin which will result in low insulin levels and cause the body to break down fat for energy. Another cause is poor insulin therapy. For example, if you work outside in the heat and forget to take insulin your body needs energy therefore your body will break down fat and release ketones.


There are many symptoms of ketoacidosis but the most common are; dry mouth, frequent urination, fatigue, loss of appetite, confusion, and fruity breath. If you are a type 1 diabetic and you have a few of these symptoms, call your doctor immediately. He or she will instruct you on what to do. You may be instructed to go to the nearest emergency room. Ketoacidosis is treated for about 3 to 4 days to flush the toxins (ketones) out of your body and get your glucose level back to normal range.


The treatment that hospitals will implement will be electrolyte replacement, fluids (for dehydration), and insulin therapy. Electrolytes will keep your heart, muscles, and nerves working properly while being treated at the hospital. More than likely you will be dehydrated from frequent urination and vomiting which will assist in flushing toxins (ketones) from the body. And most importantly, insulin therapy will reverse the ketoacidosis and your body will return to normal levels.

Ketoacidosis is a serious complication more prevalent to type 1 diabetes. By knowing what causes this complication and what symptoms to look for then you will be better prepared for it. It is essential to inform your doctor when you notice the symptoms and he or she will instruct you on what to do. If diagnosed with ketoacidosis you will be admitted to the hospital so they can monitor glucose levels and flush toxins, ketones, from your body. In addition to bringing glucose levels to the normal range.

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