Diabetic Ketoacidosis

  • William J. Martin

Diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) is caused by a deficiency in insulin combined with an increase in the counterregulatory hormones such as glucagon, catecholamines, cortisol, and growth hormone. These hormonal alterations lead to a state of severe volume depletion, acidemia, ketonemia, and electrolyte abnormalities that are fatal in up to 5% of patients. About 10% of diabetics will make their initial presentation while in DKA. It is most commonly associated with Type 1 (insulin-dependent) diabetes but may develop in Type 2 diabetes as well. Although poor compliance is a common cause of DKA, in most cases severe stress, such as sepsis, trauma, surgery, drugs, pregnancy, or myocardial infarction, is the initiating factor.


Serum Potassium Ketone Body Diabetic Ketoacidosis Regular Insulin Serum Osmolality 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • William J. Martin
    • 1
  1. 1.Aspen Institute of Plastic and Reconstructive SurgeryAspen Valley HospitalAspenUSA

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