Can hypoglycaemia be avoided by constant high blood glucose levels

Having persistently high blood glucose levels will avoid hypoglycaemia, but unfortunately it dramatically increases the risk ofdeveloping the long-term complications of diabetes. Maintaining the balance between risky hyperglycaemia and troublesome hypoglycaemia can be very difficult for patients on insulin, but is much easier these days with the different preparations and injection devices available. If you are having troublesome hypo attacks, followed by high blood glucose levels, please consult your diabetes care team as it may mean that your treatment needs to be adjusted or changed (Box 3).

Key points about hypoglycaemia.

• Hypoglycaemia can occur in any individual taking insulin or sulphonylurea tablets.

• Individuals differ in their warning signs of hypoglycaemia.

• If you think a hypo may be coming on, try to confirm with a blood test first.

• If this is not possible, take some fast-acting carbohydrate such as Lucozade or lemonade (not low calorie).

• Milk and biscuits are not ideal because they are not rapidly absorbed.

• If hypoglycaemia is a recurrent problem, seek advice from your diabetes care team.

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