Critical illness

A high proportion of patients suffering an acute stress such as stroke or myocardial infarction may

develop hyperglycemia, even in the absence of a diagnosis of diabetes. (Or perhaps stroke or

myocardial infarction was caused by hyperglycemia and undiagnosed diabetes.) Human and animal

studies suggest that this is not benign, and that stress-induced hyperglycemia is associated with a

high risk of mortality after both stroke and myocardial infarction.

Somatostatinomas and aldosteronoma-induced hypokalemia can cause hyperglycemia but usually

disappears after the removal of the tumour.


The following conditions can also cause hyperglycemia in the absence of diabetes.

  1. Dysfunction of the thyroidadrenal, and pituitary glands
  2.  Numerous diseases of the pancreas
  3. Severe increases in blood glucose may be seen in sepsis and certain infections
  4. Intracranial diseases (frequently overlooked) can also cause hyperglycemia. Encephalitis, brain tumors (especially those located near the pituitary gland), brain bleeds, and meningitis are prime examples.
  5. Mild to high blood sugar levels are often seen in convulsions and terminal stages of many diseases. Prolonged, major surgeries can temporarily increase glucose levels. Certain forms of severe stress and physical trauma can increase levels for a brief time as well yet rarely exceeds.
  6. 6 mmol/l (120 mg/dl).

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