Hyperglycemia and insulin resistance are common among critically ill patients and occur in patients with or without a history of diabetes mellitus. All patients undergoing critical illness are at risk for stress-induced hyperglycemia. Some patients may be at greater risk for hyperglycemia than others when considering underlying disease states and iatrogenic factors. Many recent studies demonstrate that tight glucose control can decrease morbidity and mortality associated with critical illness. This article reviews the pathophysiology behind stress-induced hyperglycemia, the evidence to support tight glycemic control, and the importance of an intensive insulin therapy protocol to standardize treatment among critical care patients.
Endrocrine System| January 01 2006
Hyperglycemia in the Critically Ill Patient
Michelle M. Gearhart, PharmD;
From the Department of Pharmacy Services, University Hospital, Cincinnati (Dr Gearhart), and the Department of Pharmacy Services, Fort Hamilton Hospital, Hamilton, Ohio (Dr Parbhoo).
Reprint requests to Michelle M. Gearhart, Clinical Pharmacist, Critical Care, University Hospital, Department of Pharmacy Services, 234 Goodman Street, ML 0740, Cincinnati OH 45219 (firstname.lastname@example.org).
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Shilpa K. Parbhoo, PharmD
AACN Adv Crit Care (2006) 17 (1): 50–55.
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Michelle M. Gearhart, Shilpa K. Parbhoo; Hyperglycemia in the Critically Ill Patient. AACN Adv Crit Care 1 January 2006; 17 (1): 50–55. doi:
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