high blood sugar (hyperglycemia)

High Blood Sugar (Hyperglycemia)


High blood sugar (hyperglycemia) is the stage the level of sugar in your blood is too high. It mostly affects people with diabetes and could be serious if not treated.

Blood sugar that is too low can also happen in diabetics. Hypoglycemia, or low blood sugar, is what this is.

Blood sugar or glucose provides energy for the body’s cells, but too much could be harmful. If a person notices they are urinating more or feeling uncommonly thirsty, they may have high blood sugar, also called hyperglycemia.

What is High Blood Sugar (Hyperglycemia)

Hyperglycemia (high blood sugar) is usual in people who have diabetes. If it’s left untreated, chronic hyperglycemia can lead to diabetes complications, such as nerve damage, eye infection, and kidney damage.

Hyperglycaemia (high blood sugar) can attack people with type 1 diabetes and type 2 diabetes, as correctly as pregnant women with gestational diabetes.

It can sometimes attack people who don’t have diabetes, but usually, only people who are seriously sick, such as those who have recently had a stroke or heart attack, or have a severe infection.

Hyperglycaemia shouldn’t be confused also hypoglycaemia, which is when a person’s blood sugar level decreases too low.

Hyperglycemia, or high blood sugar, is a matter that can affect people with type 1 or type 2 diabetes. There are two primary types, including:

  • Fasting hyperglycemia: happens when a person with diabetes has blood sugar levels above 130 milligrams per liter (mg/dl) after not eating or drinking for 8 hours or more.
  • Postprandial hyperglycemia: happens when someone with diabetes has blood sugar levels of 180 mg/dl or higher 1–2 hours after eating.

Having high blood sugar levels frequently or for prolonged periods can create several adverse symptoms and increase the risk of severe difficulty over time.

Hyperglycemia proceeds when there’s too much sugar (glucose) in your blood. It’s additionally called high blood sugar or high blood glucose. This process when your body has too little insulin (a hormone) or if your body can’t apply insulin properly (insulin resistance).

Hyperglycemia commonly means you have diabetes, and people with diabetes can experience hyperglycemia time frequently.

If you have hyperglycemia that’s untreated for long periods of time, it can injure your nerves, blood vessels, tissues, and organs.

What Blood Sugar Level is called Hyperglycemia?

For people under-treated with diabetes, hyperglycemia is blood glucose greater than 125 mg/dL (milligrams per deciliter) season fasting (not eating for at least eight hours).

A person keeps prediabetes if their fasting blood glucose is 100 mg/dL to 125 mg/dL.

When a person’s fasting blood sugar levels consistently exceed 125 mg/dL, they are often diagnosed with diabetes, most commonly Type 2 diabetes. At the time of diagnosis, Type 1 diabetics typically have blood sugar levels that are extremely high (over 250 mg/dL).

Hyperglycemia is often defined for diabetics as blood sugar levels that are 180 mg/dL or higher one to two hours after eating. But this can vary accessory to what your target blood sugar goals are.

How common is High Blood Sugar (Hyperglycemia)?

Hyperglycemia and diabetes are very frequent — about 1 in 10 people in the United States has diabetes. Hyperglycemia is also very common in people with diabetes.

Is High Blood Sugar (Hyperglycemia) serious?

The purpose of diabetes treatment is to keep blood sugar levels as near to normal as possible. But if you have diabetes, no situation how careful you are, you’re likely to experience hyperglycemia at some point.

It’s important to be able to make and treat hyperglycemia, as it can lead to serious health issues if left untreated.

Occasional mild episodes aren’t commonly a cause for concern and could be treated quite easily or may return to normal on their own. However, hyperglycemia could be certainly risky if blood sugar levels become very high or stay high for long periods.

Very high blood sugar levels can cause life-threatening difficulties, such as:

  • diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) – a condition produced by the body needing to break down fat as a source of energy, which can direct to a diabetic coma; this tends to affect people with type 1 diabetes.
  • hyperosmolar hyperglycaemic state (HHS) – People with type 2 diabetes are more likely to experience severe dehydration as a result of the body’s efforts to get rid of extra sugar.

Long-term (months or years) episodes of persistently high blood sugar levels can permanently harm organs such as the kidneys, blood vessels, eyes, nerves, and nervous system.

You may be required to change your treatment or lifestyle to keep your blood sugar levels within a healthy range.

What are the signs and symptoms of High Blood Sugar (Hyperglycemia)?

Early symptoms of hyperglycemia involve:

  • Increased thirst (polydipsia) and/or hunger.
  • Frequent urination (peeing).
  • Headache.
  • Blurred vision.

Symptoms of long-term hyperglycemia include:

  • Fatigue.
  • Weight loss.
  • Vaginal yeast infections.
  • Skin infections.
  • Slow-healing cuts and sores.

You should see your healthcare supplier if you or your child is experiencing these symptoms.

The glucose level at which people with diabetes begin to experience symptoms varies. Many people don’t experience symptoms up to when their blood sugar is 250 mg/dL or higher. People who haven’t yet been investigated with diabetes typically experience these symptoms at lower levels.

It’s especially important to know the early signs of hyperglycemia and to monitor your blood sugar regularly if you take insulin or other prescriptions for diabetes. If hyperglycemia is left untreated, it can progress into diabetes-related ketoacidosis (DKA), in which a lack of insulin and a high amount of ketones cause your blood to become acidic. DKA can also infect people who have undiagnosed Type 1 diabetes. This condition is an emergency situation that can show to coma or death.

Symptoms of ketoacidosis include:

  • Nausea and vomiting.
  • Dehydration.
  • Abdominal pain.
  • Fruity-smelling breath.
  • Deep labored breathing or hyperventilation (Kussmaul breathing).
  • Rapid heartbeat.
  • Confusion and disorientation.
  • Loss of consciousness.

What causes hyperglycemia?

Hyperglycemia most frequently results from a lack of insulin. This can happen due to insulin resistance and/or matter with your pancreas — the organ that creates insulin.

Other hormones can lead to the development of hyperglycemia as well. Excess cortisol (the “stress hormone”) or growth hormone, for example, can usher to high blood sugar:

Insulin resistance

A usual cause of hyperglycemia is insulin resistance. Insulin resistance, also known as damaged insulin sensitivity, occurs when cells in your muscles, fat, and liver don’t respond as they should to insulin.

When your cells don’t properly respond to insulin, your body needs more and more insulin to regulate your blood sugar. If your body is unable to create enough insulin (or you don’t inject enough insulin), it results in hyperglycemia.

Insulin resistance is the main produce of Type 2 diabetes, but anyone can experience it, involve people without diabetes and people with other types of diabetes. It could be temporary or chronic.

Common causes of insulin resistance include:

  • Obesity. Scientists consider obesity, especially overflow fat tissue in your belly and around your organs (visceral fat), as a primary cause of insulin resistance.
  • Physical inactivity.
  • A diet of highly processed, high-carbohydrate foods and soaked fats.
  • Certain prescriptions, including corticosteroids, some blood pressure medications, certain HIV treatments, and some psychiatric medications. These could cause temporary or long-term insulin resistance depending on how long you get them.

Certain hormonal conditions can direct to insulin resistance, such as:

  • Cushing syndrome (excess cortisol).
  • Acromegaly (excess growth hormone).
  • Pregnancy. During pregnancy, the placenta releases hormones that produce insulin resistance. For some people, this is related to gestational diabetes.

Certain inherited genetic conditions are also related to insulin resistance, including:

  • Rabson-Mendenhall syndrome.
  • Donohue syndrome.
  • Myotonic dystrophy.
  • Alström syndrome.
  • Werner syndrome.
  • Pancreas issues.
  • Damage to your pancreas can usher in a lack of insulin production and hyperglycemia.

Pancreatic conditions that can produce hyperglycemia and diabetes involve:

  • Autoimmune disease: In Type 1 diabetes, your immune system attacks the insulin-generative cells in your pancreas for unknown reasons. This means your pancreas can no longer create insulin, resulting in hyperglycemia. Latent autoimmune diabetes in adults (LADA) also results from an autoimmune reaction, but it progresses much more slowly than Type 1.
  • Chronic pancreatitis: This condition creates prolonged inflammation of your pancreas, which can damage the cells that create insulin. This can decision in a lack of insulin and hyperglycemia. Pancreatitis is a known generate of Type 3c diabetes.
  • Pancreatic cancer: Cancer in your pancreas can damage the cells that create insulin, resulting in a lack of insulin and hyperglycemia. About 25% of people with pancreatic cancer are investigated with diabetes 6 months to 36 months before the diagnosis of pancreatic cancer.
  • Cystic fibrosis: People who have cystic fibrosis develop extreme mucus, which can scar their pancreas. This can cause their pancreas to generate less insulin, resulting in hyperglycemia and cystic fibrosis-related diabetes (CFRD).

Temporary causes of hyperglycemia

Certain situations can temporarily increase your blood sugar levels and generate hyperglycemia in people with and without diabetes.

Physical stress, such as from an illness, surgery, or injury, can temporarily elevate your blood sugar. Acute emotional stress, such as experiencing trauma or work-related stress, can raise your blood sugar as well. This is due to the release of cortisol and/or adrenaline by your body.

Causes of hyperglycemia in people with diabetes

Several factors can lead to hyperglycemia in people with diabetes. It can progress if things like food and diabetes drugs are out of balance.

Common situations that can direct to hyperglycemia for people with diabetes involve:

  • Not taking enough insulin, injecting the wrong insulin or expired insulin, or any matter with the injection (such as from a site issue in insulin pump therapy).
  • Not timing insulin and carb intake correctly.
  • The amount of carbohydrates you’re consuming isn’t balanced with the amount of insulin your body can create or the amount of insulin you inject.
  • The dose of oral diabetes medication you’re taking is too low for your requirements.
  • Being less active than normal.
  • Dawn phenomenon.

How is Hyperglycemia diagnosed?

Healthcare providers order bloodwork to screen for hyperglycemia and find diabetes. These tests may involve:

  • Fasting glucose tests.
  • Glucose tolerance tests.
  • A1c test.

People with diabetes apply at-home blood sugar testing (using a glucose meter) to monitor their blood sugar and check for hyperglycemia. If you use continuous glucose monitoring (CGM), your device could alert you to high blood sugar.

As this technology can sometimes be inaccurate, it’s critical to check your blood sugar with a glucose meter if the CGM reading doesn’t match how you feel.

Risk factors

Risk factors that make you more likely to have high blood pressure involve:

Having biological family members with high blood pressure, cardiovascular disorder, or diabetes.

  • Being over age 55.
  • Being Black.
  • Certain medical conditions involve chronic kidney disease, metabolic syndrome, obstructive sleep apnea, or thyroid disease.
  • Having overweight or obesity.
  • Not getting enough exercise.
  • Eating foods high in sodium.
  • Smoking or using tobacco products.
  • Drinking too much.

Doctors do not know what exactly causes diabetes. However, some factors could increase the risk, including the below.

Type 1 diabetes

  • Researchers believe certain genetic or environmental factors could make people more likely to get type 1 diabetes.
  • certain genes play a role and other factors — similar to viruses and infections — could have significance.
  • The Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation states that there is nothing a person can do to avoid type 1 diabetes. Eating, exercising, or other lifestyle choices do not change the outcome.
  • Type 1 diabetes commonly starts during childhood or early adulthood, but it can happen at any age.

Type 2 diabetes

The following risk factors could increase the riskTrusted Source of developing type 2 diabetes:

  • having certain genes.
  • having overweight or obesity.
  • being physically inactive.
  • having a birth parent or sibling with type 2 diabetes.
  • being aged over 45 years.
  • receiving treatment for high blood pressure or having blood pressure above 130/80 millimeters of mercury (mm Hg)Trusted Source.
  • having high triglyceride levels or low levels of “good” high-density lipoprotein cholesterol.

What are the complications of hyperglycemia?

Prolonged (chronic) hyperglycemia over the years can injure blood vessels and tissues in your body. This can produce a variety of complications, including the following:

  • Coronary artery disease (CAD).
  • Stroke.
  • Heart attack.
  • Peripheral artery disease.
  • Kidney disease and kidney failure.
  • Difficulty during pregnancy.
  • Eye damage.
  • Vascular dementia.
  • Retinopathy.
  • Nephropathy.
  • Neuropathy.
  • Gastroparesis.
  • Heart disease.
  • Stroke.

It’s important to get that other factors can contribute to the development of diabetes complications, such as genetics and how long you’ve had diabetes.

Acute (sudden and severe) hyperglycemia can show to DKA, which is life-threatening.

Treatment of High Blood Sugar (Hyperglycemia)

If you have diabetes and notice any of the early symptoms of high blood sugar, test your blood sugar and call the doctor. They could ask you for the results of several readings. They could suggest the following changes:

Drink more water. Water assists in removing excess sugar from your blood through urine, and it supports you in avoiding dehydration.

Exercise more. Working out can assist in lowering your blood sugar. But under certain conditions, it can cause blood sugar to go even higher. Ask your doctor what variety of exercise is right for you.

Caution: If you have type 1 diabetes and your blood sugar is high, you are required to check your urine for ketones. When you have ketones, do NOT exercise. If you have type 2 diabetes and your blood sugar is high, you could also be sure that you have no ketones in your urine and that you are well-hydrated. Then your doctor might give you the OK to exercise with care as long as you feel up to it.

Change your eating habits. You may be required to meet with a dietitian to change the amount and types of foods you eat.


Unfortunately, it could be difficult to totally prevent high blood sugar when you have diabetes. However, you can adjust your diabetes management plan to try to decrease the number of hyperglycemia episodes you experience.

It’s easiest to do this when you and your healthcare provider know what causes your blood sugar to rise. Give your healthcare provider as much detail as possible about any high blood sugar episodes. Fixing the problem could be as simple as changing the times you take medication, eat, and exercise.

To help have your blood sugar within a healthy range:

  • Follow your diabetes feed plan. If you get insulin or oral diabetes medication, be consistent about the amount and timing of your feed and snacks. The food you eat may be in balance with the insulin active in your body.
  • Monitor your blood sugar. Depending on your treatment plan, you could check and record your blood sugar level sometimes a week or many times a day. Careful monitoring is the only method to make sure that your blood sugar level stays within your target range. Note when your glucose readings are above or under your target range.
  • Carefully follow your healthcare provider’s directions for how to get your medication. Modify your medication if you change your physical activity. The conversion depends on blood sugar test results and on the type and distance of the activity. If you have questions about this, talk to your healthcare distributor.

The following steps can assist in preventing high blood sugar:

  • Take all your medications as prescribed.
  • Follow your healthcare distributor’s instructions about food and exercise.
  • Examine your blood sugar regularly.


Can hyperglycemia cause high blood pressure?

The close connection of diabetes with hypertension is commonly thought to be due to underlying obesity, insulin resistance, and/or hyperinsulinemia. Hyperglycemia itself may also cause changes in vascular function and structure that direct hypertension.

What are the 4 symptoms of hyperglycemia?

Symptoms of hyperglycemia involve:
raised thirst and a dry mouth.
Frequent urination (peeing).
blurred vision.
unintentional weight loss.
recurrent inflammation, such as thrush, bladder infections (cystitis), and skin infections.

Does hyperglycemia cause hypertension or hypotension?

Significant hypercalcemia induces an elevation in blood pressure (BP), whereas extra parathyroid hormone (PTH) lowers BP. Hypertension caused by hypercalcemia is, however, more severe in patients with chronic renal failure (CRF) and secondary hyperparathyroidism.

Can hypoglycemia cause high blood pressure?

Yes, if your blood sugar is too low, it can usher to high blood pressure. When your blood
sugar is low, your body releases a hormone called adrenaline to assist in raising it. Adrenaline is responsible for raise your heart rate and constricting your arteries, which leads to even
higher blood pressure.

What are the danger levels of hyperglycemia?

Hyperglycaemia, or a hyper, can happen when your blood glucose (sugar) levels are too high usually above 7mmol/l before a feed and above 8.5mmol/l two hours after a meal.

What are the dangers of hyperglycemia?

Certain factors or conditions increase the risk for hyperglycemia, including:
Obesity or being overweight.
Family history of type 2 diabetes.
Personal history of gestational diabetes.
Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS).
Prediabetes (when blood glucose levels are high, but not high enough to be investigated as

Does hyperglycemia increase or decrease heart rate?

Some scholars confirm that hyperglycemia can raise systolic and diastolic blood pressure, HR, and plasma catecholamine levels and reduce leg blood flow.

Does high blood sugar affect sleep?

Your kidneys overcompensate for high blood sugar levels by making you urinate more frequently. These repeated trips to the bathroom throughout the night raise blood sugar levels, which can also result in headaches, increased thirst, and exhaustion which makes it difficult to fall asleep.

Who is at risk for hyperglycemia?

Certain factors or conditions raise the risk for hyperglycemia, involving Obesity or being overweight. Family record of type 2 diabetes. Personal record of gestational diabetes.

What is the fastest method to reduce hyperglycemia?

The preferred—and quickest—technique of treating hyperglycemia is to take rapid-acting insulin such as Humalog, Novolog, or Apidra.1 If you have type 1 diabetes, you could be able to get a correction dose through your insulin pump, decently.

Can you recover from hyperglycemia?

Hyperglycemic diabetic coma: The doctor will give hydration and insulin. The person does start to recover quickly after treatment starts. Most people create a full recovery.

What is the best treatment for hyperglycemia?

Changes to your insulin program or a supplement of short-acting insulin can assist control
of hyperglycemia. A supplement is an extra dose of insulin used to temporarily correct a
high blood sugar level. Ask your healthcare provider how often you require an insulin
supplement if you have high blood sugar.

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