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Hypoglycemia in Infancy


Hypoglycemia is a condition that causes your infant's blood glucose (sugar) level to drop too low. When this happens, his or her 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.


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.


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:

Healthcare providers 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 information about your child's current health.


  • Glucose may be given through an IV if your infant cannot eat foods that have carbohydrate.
  • Medicines may be given to help control hypoglycemia.


  • A fasting test may be done. Healthcare providers 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, healthcare providers 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 or her hypoglycemia.
  • Urine tests are done to check your infant's levels of ketones and sugar. This test tells healthcare providers how well his or her blood glucose is being managed, and if he or she needs more tests.


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


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 or her brain's growth may be affected. Hypoglycemia that occurs over a long period of time can lead to delayed development, seizures, or both.


You have the right to help plan your infant's care. Learn about your infant's health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your infant's pediatrician to decide what care you want for your infant.

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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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Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.