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Health Tip: When Diabetics Get Sick

When you should call a doctor

(HealthDay News) -- Controlling illness is important for anyone, but prudent medical care is even more vital for diabetics. Hormones released during illness and other times of stress can affect blood sugar levels.

The American Diabetes Association suggests that diabetics should call the doctor if they aren't sure how to care for themselves, or if they have these warning signs:

  • If symptoms of illness, possibly including fever, have continued for a couple of days without improvement.
  • If diarrhea or vomiting has continued for more than six hours.
  • If there are moderate or large amounts of ketones in your urine.
  • If, even after taking enough insulin to account for your illness, your blood sugar is 240 or higher before meals and stays there for more than 24 hours.
  • If you have symptoms of ketoacidosis or dehydration, which may include chest pain, difficulty breathing, dry or cracked lips, and breath that smells like fruit.
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