Recent advances in the monitoring and management of diabetic ketoacidosis

QJM. 2004 Dec;97(12):773-80. doi: 10.1093/qjmed/hch132.


Diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) is still a major contributor to morbidity and mortality in diabetes. The triad of hyperglycaemia, ketosis and acidosis can be diagnosed within a few minutes of the patient presenting, by measuring blood glucose and ketones using a meter, and venous blood pH on a blood gas analyser. Quantifying ketosis allows accurate distinction between simple hyperglycaemia and metabolic decompensation. We review the management of DKA, and the emerging role of near-patient testing in diagnosing ketosis and monitoring its resolution.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Blood Glucose / analysis
  • Diabetic Ketoacidosis / diagnosis*
  • Diabetic Ketoacidosis / etiology
  • Diabetic Ketoacidosis / therapy*
  • Humans
  • Hypoglycemic Agents / therapeutic use
  • Insulin / therapeutic use
  • Ketone Bodies / blood
  • Long-Term Care
  • Potassium / administration & dosage


  • Blood Glucose
  • Hypoglycemic Agents
  • Insulin
  • Ketone Bodies
  • Potassium