Case No. 72

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Case No. 72


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Chief Complaint:

Diabetic Ketoacidosis

Published: Aug. 8, 2017
Author: jason.lopez

A 23year old female with a history of type 1 diabetes present to the Emergency Department with lightheadedness, polyuria, polydipsia, and generalized weakness. She ran out of her insulin several days ago and has been unable to see primary doctor or call for a refill. The patient has been checking her fingersticks at home and states her glucometer has been reading >500 for the past 1-2 days. She has mild abdominal discomfort and has had several episodes of vomiting. No fevers, chills, cough, diarrhea, or dysuria. On examination she is noted to have dry mucous membranes. She is alert and oriented x 3 and vital signs are notable for tachycardia only. Her lab workup is notable for positive serum ketones, anion gap of 28, pH 7.11, HCO3 12, FS >500, K 5.2. She is given several liters of NS and is started on an insulin drip. Several hours later her AG is 24, FS 200, pH 7.32, K 4.7.


What is the next best step in management?

  • continue the current management
  • start D5 1/2 NS
  • increase the insulin drip
  • decrease the insulin drip
  • switch to subcutaneous insulin
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