Hyperglycemia during acute illness could indicate risk for type 2 diabetes

A patient who experiences hyperglycemia during a critical illness may be in danger of developing type 2 diabetes. A new study published in the journal Critical Care has revealed that there may be a significant association between hyperglycemia during acute illness and the future development of diabetes or glucose intolerance.

Lead investigator Ivan Gornik and his research team from the University Hospital Centre Rebro in Crotia followed a large group of intensive care unit (ICU) patients for a period of five years after they were discharged from the hospital.

A total of 398 individuals were normoglycemic, and 3.5 percent of these people developed type 2 diabetes. Meanwhile, of the 193 patients who experienced hyperglycemia while hospitalized, approximately 17 percent developed the disease.

"Despite the fact that endocrine and metabolic changes probably occur in all acutely ill patients, evidence of hyperglycemia is not always present," Gornik said. "We hypothesized that hospital-acquired hyperglycemia can therefore reveal a patient's predisposition to impaired glucose control which could, in the future, lead to diabetes."

He added that the results emphasize the importance of appropriately monitoring and treating patients who present with hyperglycemia, as it may indicate a potential risk for the disease.
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