The performance of a glucose-ketone meter in the diagnosis of diabetic ketoacidosis in patients with type 2 diabetes in the emergency room.Diabetes Technol Ther. 2010 Jul; 12(7):529-35.DT
Diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) is a serious metabolic complication. One of its precipitating causes is insulin omission. DKA requires early diagnosis and strict glucose control, which increases the use of glucose meters in the Emergency Room (ER). We aimed to determine the performance of a glucose-ketone meter in the diagnosis of DKA.
From 450 type 2 diabetes mellitus insulin-treated patients attending the ER with a capillary glucose level >13.9 mmol/L, 50 patients (26 men and 24 women, mean age 60.2 +/- 8.2 years) had DKA. Capillary glucose and beta-hydroxybutyrate (beta-OHB) were measured with the Precision-Xtra device (Abbott Laboratories, Abingdon, UK). Serum glucose and biochemical parameters were measured on an automatic analyzer; serum beta-OHB was determined using an enzymatic end-point spectrophotometric method. Urine ketones were determined using a semiquantitative assay (Ketodiastix, Bayer Diagnostics, Stoke Poges, Slough, UK).
Serum and capillary beta-OHB values were highly correlated (r = 0.99, P < 0.001), and the mean difference between them was 0.49 mmol/L (95% confidence interval [CI], 0.35-0.95 mmol/L; P = 0.81). Similarly, serum and capillary glucose values were significantly correlated (r = 0.86, P < 0.001), and the mean difference between them was 0.43 mmol/L (95% CI, 0.82-0.93 mmol/L; P = 0.71). Patients with DKA were inadequately treated with insulin and missed clinic appointments: 80% of patients with DKA compared to 20% of patients without DKA. In all cases, DKA was attributed to insulin omission. Capillary ketonemia (beta-OHB >3.0 mmol/L) had the highest performance (sensitivity 99.87%, specificity 92.89%, positive predictive value 92.89%) for the diagnosis of DKA compared with serum ketonemia (sensitivity 90.45%, specificity 88.65%, positive predictive value 87.76%) or ketonuria (sensitivity 89.89%, specificity 52.73%, positive predictive value 41.87%).
Implementation of measures such as home glucose and ketone monitoring can possibly decrease the number of hospital admissions due to DKA.