Diabetes and Ketones

There are many complications associated with diabetes. Sometimes, diabetics have a problem with ketones in the bloodstream. Left untreated, this turns into a condition known as ketoacidosis. A ketone is an acid that is left in the body after the body has burned its own fat. The body burns fat in diabetics when it can not get enough glue to use for energy. If the body has to use too much fat, ketones appear in the bloodstream.

If the level of keytones in the bloodstream becomes too high, ketoacidosis occurs. This happens in diabetics simply because when diabetes is being controlled, there may not be enough glucose left in the bloodstream. Ketoacidosis is a very serious condition, and it can lead to coma and death.

Ketoacidosis occurs in patients who suffer from Type 1 diabetes more than it occurs in Type 2 diabetes. This is not to say, however, that it will not occur in a Type 2 diabetic. It does. The symptoms of ketoacidosis include breathlessness, nausea, vomiting, foul or fruity-smelling breath, and stomach pains.

Again, ketoacidosis is life-threatening, and if you suspect that you have it, you should contact your doctor immediately for treatment. You should also be tested for ketones. Your doctor will determine when you should be tested. Testing is very easy, and is done with urine strips. You should not eat or drink anything approximately eight hours before ketone testing.

You should absolutely be tested for ketones if your blood sugar is higher than 250 mg / dl, if you become ill, or if you are vomiting or experience diarrhea. Depression and stress are also an indication that ketone testing should be done, and diabetic women who become pregnant should also be tested regularly. Ketone testing can be done in your doctor's office or in your home with over-the-counter test strips. When testing at home, if your ketone test is positive, you should contact your doctor right away.