Hypoglycemia In Infancy

WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW:

Hypoglycemia is a condition that causes your infant's blood glucose (sugar) level to drop too low. When your infant's blood sugar level drops too low, his brain cells and muscles do not have enough energy to work well. Glucose is needed to help an infant's brain grow normally. Hypoglycemia may be short-term or ongoing.

CARE AGREEMENT:

You have the right to help plan your baby's care. Discuss treatment options with your baby's caregivers to decide what care you want for your baby.

RISKS:

The medicines that are used to manage your infant's hypoglycemia may cause certain side effects. Some of these side effects include poor growth, pain at the injection site, vomiting, and diarrhea. If your infant continues to have hypoglycemia and it is not treated, his brain's growth may be affected. Hypoglycemia that occurs over a long period of time can lead to mental retardation, seizures, or both.

WHILE YOU ARE HERE:

Informed consent

is a legal document that explains the tests, treatments, or procedures that your child may need. Informed consent means you understand what will be done and can make decisions about what you want. You give your permission when you sign the consent form. You can have someone sign this form for you if you are not able to sign it. You have the right to understand your child's medical care in words you know. Before you sign the consent form, understand the risks and benefits of what will be done to your child. Make sure all of your questions are answered.

An IV

is a small tube placed in your vein that is used to give you medicine or liquids.

Heart monitor:

This is also called an ECG or EKG. Sticky pads placed on your child's skin record the electrical activity of his heart.

Vital signs:

Caregivers will check your child's blood pressure, heart rate, breathing rate, and temperature. They will also ask you or your child about his pain. These vital signs give caregivers information about your child's current health.

Medicines:

  • Glucose may be given through an IV if your child cannot eat foods that have carbohydrate.

  • Medicines may be given to help control hypoglycemia.

Tests:

  • A fasting test may be done. Caregivers watch your infant closely during a period of time in which your infant does not eat. This test is done to cause hypoglycemia to occur. When hypoglycemia occurs, caregivers will do tests to find the cause.

  • Blood tests are done to measure your infant's blood sugar levels and find the cause of his hypoglycemia.

  • Urine tests are done to check your infant's levels of ketones and sugar. This test tells caregivers how well his blood glucose is being managed, and if he needs more tests.

Treatment:

Your infant may be fed through a nasogastric (NG) tube if he cannot eat through his mouth. An NG tube is put in through his nose and goes down into his stomach.

© 2014 Truven Health Analytics Inc. Information is for End User's use only and may not be sold, redistributed or otherwise used for commercial purposes. All illustrations and images included in CareNotes® are the copyrighted property of A.D.A.M., Inc. or Truven Health Analytics.

The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

Learn more about Hypoglycemia In Infancy (Inpatient Care)

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