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Diabetic Hyperglycemic Hyperosmolar Coma


Diabetic Hyperglycemic Hyperosmolar coma is a condition that arises due to complication of type 2 diabetes. This condition is characterized by high levels of blood sugar without the existence of keotones. In simple words, it can be said that the Diabetic Hyperglycemic Hyperosmolar coma is a situation that involves:

  • Extremely high sugar level
  • Extreme dehydration
  • Decreased consciousness

Some of the alternative names of the condition are Diabetic Hyperglycemic Hyperosmolar syndrome, Hyperosmolar nonketotic coma (HONK) and Nonketotic hyperglycemic hyperosmolar coma (NKHHC).

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The condition is commonly caused by type 2 diabetes. Therefore, those people who are suffering from type 2 diabetes or unable to control their diabetes are commonly affected from the condition most. Infection, administration of medications that increases fluid loss from the body or lowers glucose tolerance, etc are considered as the possible causes of the condition.  In the human body, kidneys perform the function to control the high glucose levels in the blood by allowing excess glucose to pass out from the body through urine. If a person does not drink enough fluids or drink excessive fluids that contain sugar, the kidneys will never remain devoid of excessive glucose. It is due to the reason; the glucose levels become very high in the blood that eventually results in making blood much more concentrated than normal level.

When the blood in the body contains high concentration of glucose, salt or other substances, it causes water to transfer into the bloodstream. This condition is known as Hyperosmolarity and it results in draining water out from the various bodies’ parts, including brain. Hyperosmolarity, normally, develops the cycle of dehydration and increasing level of blood sugar.

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Signs & Symptoms

Some of the common symptoms of Diabetic Hyperglycemic Hyperosmolar coma are:

  • Coma
  • Weakness, lethargy
  • Increased thirst
  • Convulsions
  • Increased urination
  • Speech impairment
  • Dysfunctional movement

It is important to disclose the fact that the symptoms of the condition get worse with the time.

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Keep a check over type 2 diabetes, detecting early signs of any infection and dehydration helps in preventing the condition of Diabetic Hyperglycemic Hyperosmolar coma.

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Conservative Treatment Modern Medicine

The main treatment of the condition revolves around treating the dehydration. If dehydration improves, automatically improvement will be observed in urine output, blood pressure level and overall circulation of the body. High levels of the glucose are treated by giving intravenous insulin. Similarly, potassium and fluids are given intravenously into the body.

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