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The Question
Wed Jun 11 05:17:03 EDT 2014

I just wondering what exactly the link between acetone and diabetes, is DKA happens in every diabetes patient? and could DKA be the first sign?
Asked By: curiousness  
Category: Prediabetes

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if there's a strong relation between acetone and diabetes, maybe we can detect diabetes through the acetone in a person
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Expert Answers (1)
2014-07-21 12:32:03.0


Thanks for asking dLife.

Ketoacidosis (or DKA) occurs when blood glucose become extremely high (250 mg/dL or higher). The body burns fat and muscle for energy, rather than glucose. This medical emergency results in a rise in ketone bodies in the blood and/or urine (called ketosis). A sign of DKA is a fruity acetone breath.

In fact, people with type 1 diabetes may be in DKA when they were first diagnosed. Acetone breath may be an indicator of type 1 diabetes. People in DKA are usually admitted to the emergency room for prompt and immediately treatment.

A variety of factors can cause high blood glucose (hyperglycemia). They include:

  • failure to take medication
  • extreme emotional stress
  • illness or injury.

    People with diabetes who control their blood glucose levels rarely if ever experience DKA.

    Read about managing high blood glucose.

    Take care.

  • Answered By: Liz Quintana
    Accreditations: EdD, RD, LD, CDE
    Sources Show

    Community Answers (2)
    2014-09-12 15:21:33.0

    Acetone is produced as a by-product from burning fat. Normally all people produce ketones (acetone is one of these) when they use fat for energy. We excrete acetone through our urine and it never becomes high in our blood. The real problem in DKA is not how high the blood sugar is, or even if there are a few ketones in our blood, but that people who are in DKA have a relative or absolute absence of insulin. The problem is not the blood sugar the problem is that they can't use any sugar to make energy from carbohydrate because they have little or no insulin to allow them to use glucose for energy. So they are forced to burn large amounts of fat to have energy, and therefore make large amounts of ketones. The body tries very hard to get rid of the ketones by putting them out in the urine. But people with higher sugars from lack of insulin are most often dehydrated (trying to get rid of the sugar) and they have trouble getting rid of the ketones too. When the ketones build up in their body that leads to DKA(ketones are acids).Sometimes people can develop DKA when they miss their insulin shots or if they are very stressed with an illness and need more insulin but can't make it. Those are the circumstances that lead to DKA and when it is treated the main focus is to use insulin to force the body to go back to burning glucose as its main source of energy. People who make no insulin like those who have type 1 are at a much higher risk for DKA. People with type 2 diabetes usually make enough insulin to avoid this problem unless they are quite ill. That is why we advise people who use insulin not to miss injections of long acting insulin even if they are not eating well because that provides the baseline insulin that would prevent DKA from happening.
    Answered By: auto1357248373767

    Sources Show

    2014-07-25 15:29:47.0

    As well as the excellent information offered by Ms Liz Quintana, it is NOT true that all diabetics experience DKA (Diabetic Ketoacidosis). DKA occurs more in type 1 diabetics. In people that suffer with type 2 diabetes, they are more likely to enter a condition called Hyperosmolar Hyperglycemic Non-ketotic Syndrome (HHNS), This occurs predominantly type 2 diabetics as they're still producing some insulin which, in many cases, prevents the lapse into DKA. It IS, though, still a life-threatening condition which often requires hospital admission for urgent medical attention. The following webpage, from the American Diabetes Association, offers more information about this.
    Answered By: micksmixxx

    Sources Show


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