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PEP Talk

Diabetes Ketoacidosis - Know the Symptoms

Adapted from the Mastering Your Diabetes handbook


If you have type 1 diabetes, you need to monitor your urine or blood for ketones. 

Your body uses fat for energy when your blood sugar levels are high.  The break down product of fat is ketones.  Ketones become acid in the body and if severe, can affect the way your heart beats and the way you breathe. 

The combination of high blood sugars, ketones and acid is called diabetic ketoacidosis or DKA.  It is a very serious situation that requires immediate medical attention.  Symptoms of ketoacidosis include those for high blood sugar plus:

     • "Fruity" smelling breath

     • Nausea

     • Vomiting

     • Stomach Cramps

     • Confusion

     • Unconsciousness

Symptoms of High Blood Sugars include:

     • Increased urination

     • Increased thirst

     • Hunger

     • Feeling tired

     • Blurry vision

If you experience the symptoms of DKA, go to your closest Emergency Care Center.


If you experience the symptoms of DKA, go to the closest Emergency Care Center.  Better to be safe than sorry!


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